Contact the Author |

A Sixth Sense

What would you do to escape the grinding poverty of life in a Dublin slum in the 1930s? What chance do you have to break out of its debilitating and mind-numbing hold on you? Would you kill to survive?

 This is the dilemma facing Francis Reagan. He has a run-in with a paedophile priest whose subsequent murder unleashes for him a lifelong odyssey. Wherever he goes, he can’t find peace as his past continuously haunts him and further crimes entrap him. He trusts only his instincts– A Sixth Sense – which enable him to keep one step ahead of his pursuers, or does he?

 In order to escape the hangman in Ireland, Francis volunteers as an ambulance driver for the Republican Army in Spanish Civil War. He is recruited by the Germans and reconnoitres the poor air-raid defences in Belfast. A significant German bombing raid occurred in April 1941, when some 1,000 people lost their lives and thousands were displaced. Francis was devastated and blamed himself for the many city-wide deaths, particularly those of his close friends. A disillusioned Francis escapes from the clutches of the Abwehr and from a suspicious British military intelligence officer by moving to Britain’s Lake District.

 Francis finally finds a peaceful oasis as a Church of England vicar first in the racial cesspool that is Notting Dale, London, in the late 1950s, and then in quiet Branton, Devon. His first fifteen years there sees him at peace with his past, but his paranoia grows with the arrival in the village of the same intelligence officer who had been tasked to capture him during the war.

 Francis’s life finally begins to unravel. A series of murders leads the police to focus on the amiable vicar and his past.