Laura Jessop is a successful Headmistress running a large girls’ independent day school on the outskirts of Newcastle.
She and her husband Robert love the North-East, enjoying the tranquillity of the beautiful Northumbrian countryside, the thriving city centre with its mix of culture and commerce, and the proximity to some of the most amazing coastline and beaches in England. Robert, a successful artist, gains much of his inspiration from the local landscapes.
Her working life is fairly uneventful apart from the ordinary crises of school life; girls who panic because they haven’t revised for an important examination; the fall-out from a divorce or separation; having to appoint a replacement teacher at short notice; coaxing the nervous child to her first public performance.
She enjoys her job, combining the joys and anguish of working with youngsters with the pleasure she gains from being able to organise. She loves planning and solving problems and counts herself very lucky to have a job that allows her to indulge her passions. Laura expects things to continue in much the same vein until her retirement a few years ahead.
And then she receives the telephone call, and everything changes.
When a body is discovered in the school grounds, the resulting scandal could destroy her school. DI Dave Jenkins from the Northumbrian Police arrives to take charge of the investigation and fails to impress Laura.
She is determined to save her school’s reputation, and turns detective in an attempt to solve the mystery as quickly as possible. Her investigation uncovers more secrets and Laura realises that people are not always what they seem to be.
Under Mary’s Oak tells of Laura’s first foray into detective work, and introduces Laura to DI Jenkins.
In You Know What They Say About Lightning Laura crosses paths again with DI Jenkins when a second body is discovered.
The third book, Two Late, brings the two detectives together again when a teenage party turns to tragedy.