James Andrew

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Body under the sands.jpg
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See here for a report of an author event with James, held on July 21st, 2020.


I am a teacher by profession and spent much of my career working abroad, particularly in Turkey.

I have retired to Nairn where I am working on  further poetry collections and crime novels.


I have had three books of poetry published, one by Dionysia Press called Sailing the Sands which won a Scottish Arts Council Award, and one by KT Publishing called Birdsong and Flame


The third poetry book is called The City That Moved and is published by Dionysia Press.  Says James:  'It is mostly about my inter-reaction to Istanbul where I lived and worked at the time - a song to Istanbul in a way! '


My trilogy of crime novels set just after the First World War is now completely published. They have been published by The Book Folks, and are available on Amazon and Kindle. The first two are already also available on audio.  They are The Body Under the Sands, Death Waits For No Lady, and The Riddle Of The Dunes. All feature Inspector Blades. A new novel in the series, The Suitcase Murderer was published in April 2020, available initially on Kindle.


Body under the sands was also shortlisted in the Hastings Lit Festival Crime Novel Competition. 


[As part of the July 2020 HighlandLIT online, James prepared two short videos for HighlandLIT’s Vimeo channel in the first of which he discusses and reads from his poems (from The City that Moved, his recent release from Dionysia Press) and in the second of which he introduces us to his crime novels set in the aftermath of World War I (with particular reference to The Suitcase Murderer, published in April 2020.)  See links below. ]

Settled-in by James Andrew

As I stroll up the drive,

my eyes turn up

to the squatters on my roof,

long-faced, beaked ones:

herring gulls.


One rests on the nest

made of foliage

gathered from the trimmed hedge,

her smugness resplendent

as her body shelters the hidden egg.


Her mate lounges further up the roof

and glints at me

with eyes

that threaten

to be threatening.


That nest flounces

so leafily solid

just above my front door

which is now

beside their front door,


but I go in mine anyway

and search for

pest control

in Yellow Pages,

though I know,


in their beaky brains,

I’m the pest

that they just

haven’t deigned

to acknowledge yet.