Friday, June 9, 2017

Bloody Murder Marys with Peter James

International bestselling thriller writer, Peter James, joins us today to make Blood Murder Marys to accompany his new book, Need You Dead. His novels have been published in 37 languages and his DS Roy Grace crime novels have sold 18 million copies worldwide. His novels have won many awards and most recently he was awarded the 2016 CWA Diamond Dagger for sustained excellence. 

Here's a synopsis of the book: 

Roy Grace, creation of the CWA Diamond Dagger award winning author Peter James, faces his most mysterious case yet in Need You Dead.

Lorna Belling, desperate to escape the marriage from hell, falls for the charms of another man who promises her the earth. But, as Lorna finds, life seldom follows the plans you’ve made. A chance photograph on a client’s mobile phone changes everything for her.
When the body of a woman is found in a bath in Brighton, Detective Superintendent Roy Grace is called to the scene. At first it looks an open and shut case with a clear prime suspect. Then other scenarios begin to present themselves, each of them tantalizingly plausible, until, in a sudden turn of events, and to his utter disbelief, the case turns more sinister than Grace could ever have imagined.


Serves one reader – or author!

My best writing time is 6pm-9.30pm, always kicked off by a blast of rocket fuel.  A vodka martini most nights, but sometimes I have a Bloody Mary instead.  And the great thing is, with all that tomato juice, it has to be healthy 

My latest novel Need You Dead is centred around a woman in an abusive relationship, who has a secret lover who has lied to her about his identity and who has pretended to her for eighteen months that he is unhappily married, and is going to leave his wife for her.  But then she when she discovers who he really is, and that he is happily married, with no intention of ending his marriage, she turns on him in blind fury.  The following day she is found dead in their secret love-nest apartment.  But her lover is not the only suspect: another is her husband, who has a history of violence, and there are three more suspects, each with a good reason to have wanted her dead, needed her dead.  Another brutal and bloody murder follows.  

You would think that with a career of investigating brutal murders like these that Detective Superintendent Roy Grace wouldn’t want to touch a “Bloody Mary,” but gallows humour is an escape valve for many police officers, especially homicide investigators, along with alcohol.  So really, in so many ways, a Bloody Mary is actually the perfect drink for such a detective.


A good quality highball glass.  A glass that is both attractive to look at and to hold enhances any drink.

Tomato juice – organic if you can get it.
Neutral flavoured vodka – such as Stolichnaya, or gin – I think Bombay Sapphire is great in this drink.
Amontillado sherry
Worcester sauce
1 lemon
1 pinch of chili powder
Cubed ice
1 bowl of salted nuts.


1. Pour three fingers of vodka or gin into glass.

2. Add six fingers height of ice cubes.  A Bloody Mary should be very cold!

3. Fill to an inch below rim with tomato juice.

4. Add a single shot of sherry.

5. Squeeze in juice of a quarter of a lemon

6. Add seven drops of Worcester sauce

7. Add six drops of Tabasco.

8. Stir well, then leave five mins for ice to properly chill it.

9. Add once slice of lemon for garnish.

Salted nuts on the side really bring out the flavour of this drink to its best.

Enjoy!  And remember the wise words of my late father, who said, Never trust a man who doesn’t drink.  And those of Dean Martin:  I feel sorry for those who don't drink, because when they wake up in the morning that’s as good as their day’s going to get…  


  1. I love Peter's comments in this post. I couldn't agree more - A cold Bloody MURDER Mary with a bowl of salted nuts, Need You Dead and sunshine in the summer. What more could you want.

  2. A perfect drink from the sound of it. The book is intriguing, and now on my TBR list!

  3. Nothing like a great Bloody Mary - nice job Mr James!