Character study

Simon Kernick on Tina Boyd

Tina Boyd is a maverick detective who may or may not have a death wish. The thriller master explains how he created his much-loved protagonist

Tina Boyd has gone from a very minor character in my novels – a detective at Islington nick who was the girlfriend of one of my early protagonists – to one of my most important characters and, incredibly, it’s happened almost by accident. She just seemed to develop naturally, her roles getting bigger and bigger until she finally came into her own in my seventh book, Deadline. I remember that moment. One minute I was writing about a detective with a very small role, the next I was chronicling the life of an addictive alcoholic with a powerful sense of justice. It happened just like that.

Risk taker

I love writing about Tina because she’s the type of detective who sniffs out danger and seems to get a perverse excitement from throwing herself right into it. At times it feels like she has a death wish. She’s also prepared to risk everything to get the result she needs and, as such, she does tend to solve the crimes she’s investigating, but in a way that makes her a lot of enemies.

Why’s she like that? In her early days in the police force, Tina was a fairly run-of-the-mill detective. Not exactly an idealist but no cynic either. The turning point was when she lost the man who was her true love ten years ago, the details of which are covered in my fifth book, Relentless. Although his death was classed as a suicide, it was actually murder, and it affected Tina hugely. She left the Force and turned to drink before finally pulling herself together and rejoining.

Don’t trifle with Tina

Since then, she’s been kidnapped, shot, fired twice (the second time permanently), and had to deal with some of the nastiest people out there, even managing to kick the booze in the process.

Thankfully, the experiences haven’t broken her but instead made her tougher, braver and more resourceful. She’s definitely not a woman to be trifled with but, even so, she’s got a hugely vulnerable side and, deep down, I think she’d like to settle down and learn to love life again.

Whether that happens or not, of course, is anyone’s guess.

The Final Minute

Simon Kernick

Featuring Simon Kernick's maverick detective, TINA BOYD, this is the gripping new race-against-time thriller by the best-selling author of Relentless, The Last 10 Seconds and Stay Alive.

‘It’s night, and I’m in a strange house.

The lights are on, and and I’m standing outside a half-open door.

Feeling a terrible sense of forboding, I walk slowly inside.

And then I see her.

A woman lying sprawled across a huge double bed.

She’s dead. There’s blood everywhere.

And the most terrifying thing of all is that I think her killer might be me …’

A traumatic car-crash. A man with no memory, haunted by nightmares.

When the past comes calling in the most terrifying way imaginable, Matt Barron is forced to turn to the one person who can help.

Ex Met cop, turned private detective, Tina Boyd.

Soon they are both on the run .….

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