An introduction to Twice Nightly by Tony Gareth Smith
Tony is a friend and work colleague of mine. He flatters me by saying it was discovering and reading one of my novels (tactically left in the office kitchen!) which inspired him to take his own writing more seriously, and complete the novel he had been working on for a while. He is now a true indie author, having self-published both paperback and ebook. But he hasn't yet found his way onto forums and social media, so I am flying the flag for him!
Twice Nightly is a mystery set around a summer theatre show in Great Yarmouth in 1969. Much of it is drawn from Tony's own memories of living then and there, so the characters all sound charmingly believable with some great dialogue, and a few laugh-out-loud lines!
I've convinced Tony to keep the ebook price low as an introductory measure, so if the book appeals to anyone, I'd urge you to pick it up now: Twice Nightly on Amazon UK
Twice Nightly is the first published work by Tony Gareth Smith, but one of the lovely surprises for me was that it feels like the more accomplished work of a seasoned novelist.
The story takes place in Great Yarmouth in 1969, and is so evocative of that place and time it feels as vibrant as the present day. Centred around a summer show being put together at an end-of-pier theatre, the central mystery is a good one. Why does an ex-West End star want to come out of retirement for such a show? Is she as good as her legend, or is there more to her than meets the eye?
For me, it was the characters rather than the plot which made this such an enjoyable read. Each of them has their own arc, each speaks with believable Norfolk lingo and each gets their fair share of camp, witty or dramatic lines. It's like having a Great Yarmouth version of Coronation Street playing inside your head!
Although Tony is a friend, that is no way guarantees that I will like his work. Fortunately I can remain honest and state that this is a good, solid first novel. There are already signs that Tony's writing will evolve and that the next book will be even better, whether a sequel or an entirely different book. But I'm sure it's not just me who'd love a bit of 'Thrice Nightly'!