Keep Her Silent by Theresa Talbot | Blog Tour Extract | #Crimeseries

Keep Her Silent (Oonagh O’Neil #2)

Published by Aria

Available in ebook and paperback (21 August 2018)

301 pages


|   About the Book   |


‘Do that which is good and no evil shall touch you’

That was the note the so-called Raphael killer left on each of his victims. Everyone in Glasgow – investigative journalist Oonagh O’Neil included – remember the murder of three women in Glasgow which sent a wave of terror through the city. They also remember that he is still at large…

When the police investigation into the Raphael killings reopens, Oonagh is given a tip off that leads her straight to the heart of a complex and deadly cover-up. When history starts to repeat itself, it seems the killer is closer than she thinks. Could Oonagh be the next target…?

Authentic and gritty, Keep Her Silent is a gripping and page-turning thriller that will leave you breathless. Perfect for fans of Susie Steiner, and Karin Slaughter, Patricia Gibney.




Glasgow 2002

Oonagh scanned the faces but couldn’t pick out Alec. If she were on an identity parade she’d be snookered by now. All the men looked the same; some had kilts, others wore black tie, but they all had regulation copper haircuts and seemed to morph into each other. The women were more easily defined.

Oonagh was glad she’d plumped for the long sleeveless black dress, cut away at the shoulders with a mother-of-pearl choker-style collar, which hid her scar. It was a good choice for the event, and the only decent one she’d had which wasn’t in storage or at the cleaners.

At last she saw a face she recognised. DS McVeigh was waving frantically as he squeezed his way towards her. He looked as though he’d had his hair cut that very afternoon, but still it stuck out in wiry ginger tufts from his head. And he’d grown a moustache. Oonagh stretched out her arms. ‘Jim.’ She hugged him and kissed him on both cheeks, leaving a slight smudge of lipstick. ‘You scrub up well.’

He tugged at the cuffs of his white shirt, James Bond style. ‘D’you think?’

She stood back slightly. ‘You’re actually bordering on handsome.’

He blushed and laughed. ‘You looking for the boss?’ Jim McVeigh never referred to his superior officer by his first name, even when he was out of earshot.

‘Either that or a drink.’ A waiter passed and slowed down enough for them to each take a glass from his tray.

‘Quite an event.’

Jim looked around and sort of tipped his head in agreement. These charity balls were getting more and more lavish each year. ‘So tell me, Jim…’ Oonagh took a sip, looking over the top of her glass ‘… is it true Glasgow coppers have the most impressive balls in Scotland?’ They both burst out laughing. She liked Jim.

He was a good laugh. He suddenly straightened his face and smoothed down his jacket; Oonagh turned round to see Alec negotiate his way through the crowd towards them. ‘His bark’s worse than his bite, Jim.’

He raised his eyebrows. ‘Really? His bite’s pretty bloody lethal, believe me.’

‘I’ve been looking everywhere for you.’ Alec bent to kiss her cheek and she stood on tippy-toe to meet his embrace. ‘This guy bothering you?’ He tipped his head in McVeigh’s direction. Oonagh knew he was just teasing, but she also knew he was still easily irritated by his partner that he’d been assigned over two years ago.

‘He’s looking after me, now leave him alone.’ She slapped Davies affectionately on the shoulder. ‘You’re both off duty.’

Alec did a slight double take. ‘What the hell’s that on your top lip?’

McVeigh shuffled slightly. ‘It’s a moustache.’

‘I can see that, but have we not already had this conversation?’

‘I grew it on holiday. I can do what I like on holiday.’ He looked to Oonagh for backup. ‘Within reason.’

‘Get rid of it – you look like a twat.’

‘I think it makes you look distinguished.’ Oonagh brushed an imaginary piece of fluff from McVeigh’s shoulder; she caught Davies watching and wiped the smear of lipstick off his cheek with her thumb.

Davies raised one eyebrow and McVeigh picked up the cue, made his excuse and left.

‘Why d’you do that with him?’

She linked his arm. ‘Do what?’

‘The Doris Day routine.’

‘Oh, behave. You need the love of a good woman. Alec. You’re too flipping grumpy.’

‘Can I start with a few bad ones first, then move on to the good ones when I’m a bit older?’ Someone in the distance suddenly caught his eye. ‘Here…’ he guided Oonagh through the crowd there’s someone I want you to meet.’

He was the only man in the room in full uniform. A row of medals decorated his left breast, scrambled-egg braiding adorned his hat, which he held tucked under his arm. She recognised Gordon Threadgold immediately – Chief Constable of Strathclyde Police. Oonagh had had cause to interview him enough times when she was a reporter; he was a high-profile public figure. Alec reached out his hand as they drew near. ‘Sir,’ was all he said as the men shook hands. His face beamed. It was the first time Oonagh had heard him address anyone as sir; she’d never seen him be subservient to anyone in fact.   ‘May I introduce you to
‘Oonagh O’Neil.’  Threadgold clasped Oonagh’s hand and held it in both of his. ‘ What a pleasure to meet you.’

Oonagh didn’t have the heart to tell him they’d met several times in the past fifteen years, but long before she was a well-known face on the box every night.

‘Pleasure’s all mine, Chief Constable.’

‘Only for another,’ he made a big deal of looking at his watch, ‘twenty seven days, then I’ll be picking up my gold clock.

‘I thought it was a bit like being the president…’ Oonagh looked him in the eye to see how far she could take this ‘… or the Pope – they could never take the title away from you.’ Alec looked mortified then instantly relieved when Threadgold threw his head back and laughed at Oonagh’s quip.


* * *

My thanks to Veronica for the extract and for the tour invitation.



|   Author Bio   |

Theresa Talbot is a freelance writer, journalist and radio presenter, perhaps best known as the voice of Traffic and Travel on BBC Radio Scotland and as the host of The Beechgrove Potting Shed. Prior to working with the BBC she was with Radio Clyde and the AA Roadwatch team. Theresa worked in various roles before entering the media as an assistant in children’s homes, a Pepsi Challenge girl and a library assistant. She ended up at the BBC because of an eavesdropped conversation on a no.66 bus in Glasgow. Her passions include rescuing chickens, gardening, music and yoga



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