Julia Chapman and The Dales Detectives

I was so delighted when I spotted that Carnforth Bookshop was hosting An Evening with Julia Chapman.

I've loved all of Julia Chapman's The Dales Detective series, and was looking forward to publication day of the latest novel Date with Justice.

So, the chance to meet the author and purchase her latest novel, was too much to resist. On Friday evening we were sipping wine, eating Fat Rascals and surrounded by quite of crowd of Julia Chapman fans. Carnforth Bookshop was full to bursting and the audience was extremely enthusiastic!

One of the main reasons I love The Dales Detective series is because of the author's use of landscape in the novels. The books are all set in Settle, and the surrounding countryside and villages. The landscape feels, to me, like one of the main characters in the novels and I was so pleased that Julia Chapman spoke about how much this sense of place matters to her in her writing. The books are all firmly rooted in this lovely Yorkshire town and Julia told us how she creates her storylines whilst out running on the fells around Malham Cove.

Julia Chapman says about the setting "but while Bruncliffe may be fictional, the world it’s set in isn’t. The Three Peaks of Pen-y-ghent, Ingleborough and Whernside feature heavily. The limestone pavement patterns the fells. Swaledale sheep outnumber people. And the locals are as blunt and sharp-witted as their real-life counterparts."

I was also fascinated by the research and detail that goes into the planning of the novels. In the series, Settle becomes Bruncliffe and Julia explained how and why she chose this name. She wanted to express the beauty of the sun setting on the fells around Settle and chose "brun" from its original meaning of shining brown. She even contacted an Anglo-Saxon specialist to make certain that she had chosen correctly! This is the amazing level of detail which goes into the books.

I left with a copy of the new, and penultimate, book Date with Justice. I'm really looking forward to diving back into Bruncliffe and catching up with the doings of Ida Capstick, Samson and Delilah, and all the locals at the Fleece.