A Delingpole Mystery
Size: 5.00 x 8.00 in
Award winner in the 2017 FAPA President’s Awards
for Adult Suspense and Thrillers.
A young man. Unconscious in a hospital bed. His life is in the balance from a drugs overdose.
Attempted suicide or attempted murder?
British lawyer Dominic Delingpole investigates, with the help of his larger than life partner Jonathan McFadden.
Compromising photographs of senior politicians and business chiefs are discovered.
Is the young man a blackmailer?
Dominic and Jonathan uncover a conspiracy reaches into the highest levels of government and powerful corporations.
Three people are murdered, and Dominic and Jonathan struggle for their very survival in this gripping thriller.
- 4 To Be Read lists
- 1 Read list
Publisher: Park Creek Publishing
Heat Level: 3
Romantic Content: 3
Ending: Click here to reveal
Character Identities: Gay
Protagonist 1 Age: 26-35
Protagonist 2 Age: 26-35
Word Count: 61000
Setting: London UK
Languages Available: English
Series Type: Continuous / Same Characters
“Mrs. Gregory,” said Dominic. “I would be very happy to have you as a client, but I’m not sure in what way I can act for you.”
Samantha smiled. “And neither am I just at the moment. Let’s call you a professional friend. I have no one else who I can turn to, and your legal mind will help me to see things a little more clearly. As you can tell, I’m a little emotional just now.” She turned away to wipe a tear from the corner of her eye. Then she looked at him steadily.
“Simon and I are very close. Ever since Richard, his father, died in a climbing accident, we have been a very tight family unit. I’d like to think Simon and I can tell each other everything.”
Dominic wondered if she was keeping up a brave front, or whether she really believed Simon told her everything. Her comments clearly contradicted what Simon’s housemate Jay had said an hour ago.
Dominic decided that, as she was his client, he owed her the duty of honesty, and he should tell her about what he had learned in the last few hours.
“Samantha, I’m afraid I believe Simon may not have confided everything in you in recent times. I went to see John this morning before coming here. He told me about their relationship and how Simon was not yet ready to tell you.”
“Dominic, I’m his mother. Do you think that I didn’t know?” She sighed. “I knew he was finding it difficult to tell me, and I was waiting for him to pick the right time. I didn’t want to rush him.” She paused. “But yes, you’re right, and I am wrong. Simon hasn’t confided everything to me; I merely know and am waiting for him to tell me. John is a lovely boy, and I was just pleased to know that Simon is happy.”
Samantha narrowed her eyes slightly as she asked, “But why do you think that means he must have kept other secrets from me? Surely you of all people must know how difficult it is to come out?”
Dominic blushed briefly. “Everyone’s circumstances are different, of course, and for young people it really is much easier....”
“Oh nonsense! Can I just say that I think it’s a bit rich for you to judge Simon when you’re so secretive about yourself? We spent nearly three hours in the car together last night, and I still don’t know whether or not you have a boyfriend!” This time Dominic’s face turned crimson.
“Samantha, could we just get back to—”
“Well, do you?”
Dominic sighed. “I think it’s my turn to acknowledge that I am wrong. Yes, I do have a partner, and no, I am not very open about it. In this day and age, it probably is unnecessary for me to be quite so discreet. But after a while, it gets to be almost a habit.”
Samantha giggled. “Oh, Dominic, how delightfully bashful you are! I imagine that it’s rare you have a conversation like this with your clients.”
Dominic smiled. “Samantha, I can tell you truthfully that I have never had a conversation like this with my clients. You must meet Jonathan some time. I think you two would get on like a house on fire.”
Mel on Alpha Book Club wrote:
Set mostly in Brighton, England, this is a fascinating murder mystery, character study, and an intriguing look at what happens when young people get involved in drugs – and not just the recreational kind. In fact, the young journalism student who prompts the investigation into his attempted suicide - or murder? - is only the beginning of a trail leading to a conspiracy worthy of a thriller. The main character investigating the situation and uncovering a lot of the clues is not a detective, but a lawyer who wants to help out his neighbor, the student’s mother. I love “amateur” detectives like that and thoroughly enjoyed finding out more about Dominic and his quirky lover, Jonathan. But the mystery and dark goings-on at the center of this novel thrilled me in equal measure. As far as I am concerned, ‘The Necessary Deaths’ is a very successful blend of human interest and captivating, modern-day action adventure with political and international business conspiracies to keep me glued to the pages.
Dominic is a lawyer, likes his life to be orderly and organized, and has withdrawn from “the big city” because he prefers the more sedate pace of practicing in a smaller town. He has heard enough homophobic comments, even in mostly tolerant Britain, that he keeps his sexuality pretty close to his vest where he works. It’s different when he visits his long-distance partner, but neither Dominic nor Jonathan are ready to commit full-time. It makes Jonathan insist on an open relationship that makes Dominic very uncomfortable, and this underlying difference will need to be resolved at some point if the two of them ever want to deepen their relationship. They do end up working well together solving the case of the unconscious student, even though their investigative methods are very different and Jonathan is much too adventurous and daring for Dominic’s taste.
As for the case – it is very cleverly put together. The student who ends up in a coma due to a drug overdose is only the first riddle Dominic needs to solve. Did he overdose or attempt suicide? A housemate and the student’s mother are both convinced he is not the type to do drugs at all, and this fact plus a murder attempt while the student is in hospital open up other possibilities. Incriminating photographs point at blackmail, but who is doing the blackmailing? And who is behind the other murders that happen while Dominic and Jonathan do their best to uncover the truth? I was as full of questions as Dominic and loved how he was able to find out things that remain hidden to the police. Much of the tension comes from him not always being comfortable with what he is doing and from the “discussions” he and Jonathan have about how to proceed.
If you like crafty mysteries without obvious solutions, unpredictable outcomes and very high stakes, if the “seedy” underbelly of business and politics is a favorite subject of yours, and if you’re looking for an exciting read with complex characters who end up in mortal danger, an engaging story with more than a few twists and turns, multiple points of view that add sometimes unexpected layers to the story, and a very surprising yet satisfying ending – for now. I am already looking forward to more stories about Dominic and Jonathan!
Meredith King on Diverse Readers wrote:
The title of the book didn’t quite show itself until later on… but it definitely fit the bill. The Necessary Deaths was suspense and thriller from… well, almost the beginning. When we meet Dominic, he’s presented as a boring lawyer in a long distance relationship, going about his day when he hears a commotion outside of his apartment. On the floor, his neighbor has fainted and is being treated by EMS, only to learn that his neighbor’s son is in the hospital following a suicide attempt and his mom needs to get there. It just so happens, and lucky for all of us, that it’s in the same town where his lover lives!
As the investigation unfolds, we learn more about Dominic and his boyfriend Jonathan – and it was definitely not as expected. While Dominic’s character started out quite dry, he developed and grew into an interesting and smart man throughout, with a keen penchant for finding (and following) clues. This story is written with the focus on the suspense.
Overall, it was a fun and quick read, especially if you like figuring out a who done it – with some twists and turns that got better as the story unfolded. I will say though, that if you love a super strong mystery (as in, not having a clue as to who the bad guys are).
Natosha on Gay Book Reviews wrote:
The Necessary Deaths is a mystery and a romance. Sometimes these clash and sometimes they don't. This book there was a lot of push and pull with that.
The relationship part of this story features Dominic and Jonathan. Now, in my opinion I felt Dominic and Jonathan really didn't connect for me perfectly. I did like Jonathan though. He was my favorite of the couple.
I will tell you this is a bit of a crazy ride. But I'll encourage you to stick with it. This isn't a flawless mystery. There's some holes in the plot. There is an overabundance or characters and that is a bit overwhelming. Secondary character wise I liked Simon for sure. He wins that award.
It's an outlandish story but it's action packed and that is what really keeps the story going. You have to step away from the "This all comes together and makes sense," mentality. Do that and you'll be quite entertained.
This is the first of a series and I hope we can develop more connections to some of the characters and even see more of others that didn't get a lot of page time.
This book is so different from any other murder mystery that I have read that I had no choice but to give it a four and half rating. It is not often that a serious matter such as murder is written about but with the twist of some major humor and one of the main characters being a horn dog to top it off even though he has a long term boyfriend.
I have to admit that if I was ever in need of someone to solve a mystery for me, I definitely would want these men to be in my corner. They may not be police officers or even private investigators but once the mystery behind how Simon ended up in the hospital in what looked like an attempted suicide but then turned into attempted murder on more then one occasion, Dominic felt the lawyer in him wanting to know more behind what was really going on. Which led Jonathan wanting to help out for the adventure sake. Then in turn leads more people to helping to try an figure out exactly what is going on and who is involved.
Dominic in my opinion is very reserved. I honestly believe that he has real issues with Jonathan flirting constantly with whomever is around. Dominic tried not to be jealous but he is in love with Jonathan and wants more than a weekend here and there long distance relationship.
Jonathan is my opinion is one of those people that wants his cake and to be able to eat it too. I can honestly say that as far as his out going humorous nature I liked his character but on the flip side I did not really like him as far as a partner because I do not think that he will ever quit truly playing the field per day. Most of the time I really felt like he was throwing all the other men in Dominic’s face and that is not a very good thing.
In the end I think all the danger and almost losing everyone may have opened Jonathan’s eyes as to what he was wanting because for the first time in his life he was actually concerned about someone else’s well being.
As far as the other characters goes I found that I really liked Steve. He may be a hacker but he went above and beyond for all of these men in this book. Miles was another character I really liked and respected. He proved he is super smart and he would do anything for his friends.
This book really was an enjoyable read. Even though it was a serious situation the characters was able to humor where they could and that made the read that much more interesting.
David C. Dawson definitely put an amazing spin on this book and he did it in a way that made this book that much better.