Skip navigation Dying in the Wool A Medal for Murder Murder in the Afternoon A Woman Unknown Murder on a Summer's Day Death of an Avid Reader

Frances Brody comes from a great family of story tellers, though she's the first in the family to write professionally. "On the screen of my imagination," she says, "I can conjure aunts and uncles from years gone by, and the word pictures they painted of people from earlier generations."

She gives a glimpse of the writing life in The Leeds Big Bookend blog.

Murder on a Summer's Day

She is the author of five Kate Shackleton mysteries, of which the latest is Murder on a Summer's Day, published in the UK on 3rd October 2013.

"The series began," explains Frances, "with a picture in my head of a man trapped behind a high wall, unable to return home. Someone needed to discover who and where he was. Along came Kate Shackleton, sleuth extraordinaire. She stepped from our family album like the genie summoned from the lamp."

Click any cover to read more about that novel, or click here to learn more about Kate and the series as a whole. (The first three of the series are now published in the US, and others will follow).

And make sure you visit Frances's blog for the latest from her in her own words!


Frances's diary is filling up for the spring and summer 2014; if you are at any of these events, do come and say hello!:

Wednesday, April 23, 6.30 pm
World Book Night
Talking about 'what inspires us to write' Poulton-le-Fylde Library, Blackpool Old Rd, Poulton le Fylde, Blackpool, Lancashire, FY6 7DH, with Zoë Sharp, Chris Simms and a new local author, Alan Veale.
The talk is followed by a pie supper at 8.30 pm.
For more information telephone the library on 01253 888900.
Friday, May 2 - Sunday, May 4
Malice Domestic, Hyatt Regency, Bethesda, Maryland, USA
Don't miss the panel discussion on Saturday morning, at 10 am: Rosie Put Down Your Rivets: Sexism in Mysteries with Sasscer Hill, Catriona McPherson, Kathryn O'Sullivan and Patti Ruocco.
Sunday, May 4, 7.00 pm
Frances will be one of Six Deadly Dames - with Mary Ellen Hughes, Sujata Massey, Hank Phillipi Ryan, Marcia Talley and Elaine Viets - at Eastport Yacht Club, 317 First Street, Annapolis, MD 21403
Monday, May 5, 7.00 pm
The Six Deadly Dames at The Ivy bookstore, 6080 Falls Road, Baltimore, MD.
Thursday, May 15 - Sunday, May 18
Crimefest, Bristol Marriott Royal Hotel
On Saturday, 17 May, 11.20 am - 12.10 pm, find Frances at a panel on: The Unprofessionals, when your character isn't qualified to solve crimes with Janet Laurence, Kate Griffin, Neville Fountain and David Thorne
Saturday, June 7, 12.00 noon - 1.30 pm
Leeds Big Bookend festival
A Time for Crime at Leeds Central Library: Panel Discussion with Steve Mosby and Chris Nickson about the challenges of writing Crime Fiction set in different time periods.
Tickets £3

Before creating the Kate Shackleton mystery series, Frances wrote many stories and plays for BBC radio, scripts for television and four novels (as Frances McNeil), one of which, Somewhere Behind the Morning, won the HarperCollins Elizabeth Elgin Award. Visit to learn more.

Her stage plays have been toured by several theatre companies and produced at Manchester Library Theatre, the Gate and Nottingham Playhouse, and Jehad was nominated for a Time Out Award.

Frances lives in Leeds where she was born and grew up, and then travelled, including a spell in the USA. Time spent in Bradford, heart of the woollen industry, gave her a valuable insight into the background for Dying in the Wool, the first Kate Shackleton mystery.

Header photograph, Ingenues arrive, Central Station, Sydney, 1928-1929, by Sam Hood from the collection of the State Library of New South Wales.

Frances Brody is a participant in the Amazon EU Associates Programme, an affiliate advertising programme designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

Frances Brody is a member of the Crime Writers' Association Cornwell Internet

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Last update: 21st April 2014.

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