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Peter Walker

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Nicolas Rhea "is only one of the six pseudonyms under which Peter Walker has written around 130 books in the last 40 years. This amazing career is rooted in the application of his own experience - whether it is from being a village bobby, a Yorkshire villager, a police press officer or a father of four. Nicholas Rhea was born the son of an insurance agent and a teacher in 1936 in the North York Moors village of Glaisdale. The oldest of three children, he won a scholarship to Whitby Grammar School but left at 16 to become a police cadet. In 1956, he joined the North Yorkshire force as a beat bobby in Whitby. He also began to write seriously after years of casual interest, having his first short story published in the Police Review.

 

Three years later he moved to the region's Police Headquarters at Northallerton before being posted to Oswaldkirk, about 20 miles north of York, as the village bobby in 1964. He then became an instructor at the police training school in 1967, the same year as his first novel, Carnaby and the Hijackers, was published. He was promoted to sergeant in 1968 and inspector in 1976, when he was also appointed Press and Public Relations Officer. He retired in 1982 after 30 years' service to concentrate on his writing, encouraged by an interest in his Constable books from Yorkshire Television. Now in his late 60s, Nicholas Rhea still writes full-time. He has four children and seven grandchildren, and lives with his wife in a quiet North Yorkshire village.

Peter Walker as Nicholas Rhea has authored, among others, Constable Along the Highway, Death of a Princess, Constable Goes to Market, Constable Over the Stile, Constable in Control, Dead Ends, Self-Assured, Heartbeat: Constable Across the Moors, The Curse of the Golden Trough, Superstitious Death,  Constable in the Farmyard, Constable in the Wilderness, Constable Under the Gooseberry Bush, Constable Versus Greengrass, Constable at the Dam, Constable Along the River-bank and Some Assured.

 

According to the book description of Some Assured, "A brand new series about an insurance man in the Yorkshire Dales from the author of the Constable / Heartbeat books. Matthew Taylor was an apprentice butcher in the village shop at the outbreak of war. Not much call for that in the Army, who re-trained him as a qualified motor mechanic. But neither profession appealed as much as the chance to be the local insurance man with the task of persuading hard-hearted Yorkshire folk to part with their money for ""summat thoo can't see."" In the late forties and early fifties in the north of England his work was varied and always fascinating as he encountered some wonderful characters on his rounds. These stories take us back to a time before cars and telephones were owned by every household; a trusting time when people would leave their payment in sheds or on window ledges, and a time when, if people were short of cash, Matthew found himself accepting goods in place of premiums a sort of bartering system."

 

According to the book description of Constable Along the River-bank, "Most police officers contemplate promotion, and Constable Nick of Aidensfield is no exception. As he ponders leaving the village in a bid for higher rank, his wife begins her new job but she doesn't want to leave their happy moorland home. Despite Nick's personal dilemma, his rustic constabulary duties continue apace. There is drama when children go missing - 14-year-old Emily vanishes from home and, in a separate incident, young Craig plays truant from school - and there is more alarm when a man disappears in the river. Cars get stuck in the river too. Twin artists, Prudence and Priscilla, who share the painting of watercolours, find their precious motor car in the river and it requires a hearse to rescue it while a newcomer thinks local elves have helped recover his car from the beck. Then when old Zachariah Isaac Pentecost (Zip for short) is taken ill, Nick discovers he has a long-lost son, but where is his son now? And what is the secret of the toy railway which is always set out in Zip's house? As ever, Claude Jeremiah Greengrass causes problems, not only with his illegal egg delivery service but also when his house key is stolen and when his bus driving leads to a mini-riot in the pub. And how does Nick persuade a Pyrenean mountain dog to vacate a chair? It's all part of the daily routine for Constable Nick of Aidensfield."

 

According to the book description of Constable Versus Greengrass, "Television''s loveable rogue, Greengrass, fac es more problems with the constabulary in this new collection of tales from Aidensfield."

 

According to the book description of Constable Under the Gooseberry Bush, "When it comes to growing prize-winning gooseberries, the village of Aidensfield has always been surpassed by nearby Egton Bridge. As the annual show approaches, the rivalry between the two villages intensifies."

 

According to the book description of Constable in the Wilderness, "The wild and rugged North York Moors remain one of the unexploited and least explored areas of England. In the depths of winter, with dark days, villages cut off by snowdrifts and animals marooned amongst the heather, it has all the appearance of a true wilderness. For Constable Nick of Aidensfield, however, the fierce weather and wild terrain must not interfere with his police work. But the superintendent is not pleased when he catches Nick building a snowman in the midst of a blizzard and Nick faces more resistance when he considers evacuating a market town because a farmer on the moors reckons there'll be a devastating flood within hours. How can Nick convince the authorities the wise old farmer is right? Nick copes with Claude Jeremiah Greengrass almost killing himself on a runaway double bass, ponders why an ageing widower would want a beauty contest in Aidensfield and wonders why a beautiful Spanish senorita has come to visit a confirmed bachelor farmer on the moors. There is crime too - a young boy's precious bicycle is stolen, there is a cruel burglary in an elderly lady's home while a fake policeman is 'fining' people for traffic offences. Nick is also faced with identical twins who commit clever crimes; there are ominous goings-on in a remote churchyard too and Nick has to cope with a spillage of mysterious liquid which threatens the water supply. It's all part of constabulary duties for Constable Nick of Aidensfield."

 

According to the book description of Constable in the Farmyard, "There is crime to solve when a smallholder gets his wages stolen, raiders are disturbed on a lonely farm, and garden equipment is being stolen. Constable Nick copes with it all. Part of the Constable series which inspired the largely successful TV series Heartbeat."

 

According to the book description of Superstitious Death, "A second lighthearted crime novel featuring the superstitious Detective Inspector Montague Pluke of Yorkshire's Crickledale CID, whose investigation into the discovery of a young woman's body in a shallow grave is brought to an abrupt halt by the security services."

 

According to the book description of The Curse of the Golden Trough, "When Montague Pluke takes a holiday abroad in the Italian medieval town of Siena, he is dismayed to discover the authorities there deny the existence of the world famous Golden Trough. Even though the Golden Trough of Siena has not been seen for 600 years, Pluke is determined to find it."

 

According to the book description of Self-Assured, "More stories of the Man from the Pru Matthew and Evelyn have now bought their new home ? and are worried about the cost of maintaining it as well as providing the family with food and clothing. So there's no alternative but to work harder than ever before selling premiums for the Premier Assurance Association. But the business is expanding and life is hard but happy and warm-hearted, until a chance encounter threatens to remove Matthew from his livelihood."

 

According to the book description of Dead Ends, "When a clever young criminal disappears, his family refuse to help the police. Mark Pemberton starts an official search, but every lead produces a dead end, though evidence suggests he was kidnapped by bogus police. The trail leads to a drugs baron - or is that just another dead end?"

According to the book description of Constable Over the Stile, "In this collection of rustic tales, Constable Nick continues his fascinating duties in the peace of Aidensfield, deep in the North York Moors. There is a hint of unexpected wealth for Claude Jeremiah Greengrass when he finds a cache of silver coins and worries for Nick when a lad loses his doting grandad's silver whistle. When Claude Jeremiah's dog, Alfred, gets bitten by an adder, Britain's most loveable rogue rings the local search and rescue team - and gets Sergeant Blaketon instead. But when a Girl Guide tumbles down a waterfall, Nick has to organize a speedy rescue attempt. We encounter a frightened lady who hides in her garden shed and a wronged lady who wreaks vengeance upon an unfaithful husband while some menfolk use their own methods to deal with a thief who is stealing ladies' underwear. There is serious crime too. A convicted murderer comes to live in Aidensfield, but Nick and Sergeant Blaketon have a major problem when they hear that an escaped Great Train Robber is hiding on Nick's patch."

 

According to the book description of Death of a Princess, "Accident or murder? That question confronts Detective Superintendent Pemberton as he investigates the death of a woman nicknamed ''The Princess"

 

According to the book description of Constable Along the Highway, "There are changes in Aidensfield as Constable Nick continues his rural duties on the edge of the North York Moors. With ex-Sergeant Blaketon occupying the village post office, and a new sergeant in Ashfordly to keep the constables in order, everyne must now adapt to a different regime."


Constable Along the Highway
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Death of a Princess (Constable Crime)
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Constable Over the Stile
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Constable Goes to Market
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Constable in Control
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Dead Ends (Constable Crime)
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Self Assured
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Constable Across the Moors
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

The Curse of the Golden Trough
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Superstitious Death (Constable Crime)
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Constable in the Farmyard
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Constable in the Wilderness
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Constable Under the Goosebury Bush (The Constable Series)
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Constable Versus Greengrass
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Constable at the Dam
Nicholas Rhea  More Info
Yorkshire Days
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Constable Along the River-Bank
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

Some Assured
Nicholas Rhea  More Info

According to the book description of Constable in Control, "From the TV series, "Heartbeat", comes a story of tragedy and humour set in the dramatic landscape of the North York Moors. Featuring PC Nick Rowan, Dr Kate Rowan and the rogue Claude Jeremiah Greengrass, the story ranges from Claude's mysterious grass-cutting errands to reckless driving."

 

According to the book description of Constable Goes to Market, "For the villagers of Aidensfield and district, the market towns provide a focus for their business activities as well as their social outings, and Ashfordly is no exception. Normally quiet and peaceful, it comes alive with traders and customers on market day - and such gatherings are never without problems for Constable Nick. As he goes about his rustic constabulary duties, he sympathizes with members of the Thumbstick Club when someone steals their precious sticks, copes with a wandering flock of geese on the village green and deals with near disaster when Greengrass's dog, Alfred, demolishes market stalls in his quest to catch a white rabbit and wonders how a live hand grenade came to be left among the potatoes. The area continues to reveal eccentric characters, like old Mr Galbraith whose ambition is to freewheel as far as possible in his car, or Twelve-pint Pete who can't resist the challenge of drinking a yard of ale in record time. Sightings of an Arab, an American Indian, a Laughing Cavalier, a city gent and a UFO cause some puzzlement. There are linguistic misunderstandings, people behaving with typical British stupidity and even a crime or two - it's all in a day's work for Constable Nick of Aidensfield, the policeman who inspired Heartbeat."

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