December, 2012. From a quaint little bookshop in Camden, it should have been just another routine job, a day like any other; simply visit the dying boy in Great Ormond St Hospital and leave with his soul. Only it wasn’t to be. Leaving the boy still alive, Thanatos – Death, The Grim Reaper – decides enough is enough – and quits to devote more time to his hobbies. His dislike of man makes the job more bearable, but with the realisation that man is now not likely to pass on, Thanatos is left with a tricky decision – to go on strike with his long-term colleagues, Harry the Ferryman and Peter the Saint, or continue with his work? Boredom soon sets in, and when a series of murders occur the fingers begin to point. What is Thanatos to do? Why had things gone awry since he’d visited the boy? And just who is doing all the killing?
Mixed with supernatural goings-on, Death & Taxes is a modern tale of woe, humour, deception, love, friendship, miracles – and butterflies.
English author Simon Whitmore was born in Leicester, and spent his youth watching all the late night horror double-bills on TV and reading some of the many tales of Agaton Sax by Swedish author Nils-Olof Franzén. During his formative years he dragged himself through the 1980s to the tunes of The Smiths, Madness, New Order, The Human League, Yazoo, Heaven 17, OMD and Japan amongst many others (some good, some bad).
In 1996, he moved to New Zealand where he worked in the security industry. It was during his time in NZ he stepped up his reading, in particular the many theories surrounding the Jack the Ripper case of 1888. After seven years, he returned to the UK with a passion for writing.
Some of his favourite reads include Neverwhere & The Graveyard Book, both by Neil Gaiman, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak, I am Legend by Richard Matheson and Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks.
He has recently read and enjoyed My Dear, I wanted to tell you by Louisa Young and he harbours a dream one day to write a novel about the Great War.
Death & Taxes is his first novel.
Partnership from Hell is his second novel, spawned from his interest in JTR and love of vampires.