Today I’m welcoming Lee Cockburn to the blog to discuss ‘Porcelain’.

This is Lee’s second crime story featuring Detective Sergeant Taylor Nicks and this post is part of the blog tour.

Want to know more? Here’s the blurb:

High-powered businessmen are turning up tortured around the city of Edinburgh with one specific thing in common — a sinister double life involving paedophilia. Leaving his ‘victims’ in a disturbing state, the individual responsible calls the police and lays bare the evidence of their targets’ twisted misdemeanours to discover, along with a special memento of their own troubled past — a chilling calling card.

Once again heading the investigation team is Detective Sergeant Taylor Nicks, along with her partner Detective Constable Marcus Black, who are tasked not only with tracking the perpetrator down but also dealing with the unusual scenario of having to arrest the victims for their own barbarous crimes.

But with the wounded piling up the predator’s thirst for revenge intensifies and soon Nicks discovers that she is no longer chasing down a sinister attacker but a deadly serial killer.

Lee Cockburn Photo

E Hamilton:

Welcome to Buried Under Books and congratulations on the publication of your second book.

The opening chapter of ‘Porcelain’ is an upsetting scene involving sexually abused and physically neglected young children. How do you cope with the traumatic scenes you encounter in your working life? And what made you decide to choose this particular topic for your fiction?

Lee Cockburn:

I don’t think I could work in that specialist department and deal with cases involving children 24/7. I wouldn’t be able to detach my
personal feelings and emotions from each case. I would get upset, too emotionally involved with the people and this may affect my judgement and performance. I always look at the human side of each situation and just want to save everyone from the harsh reality of certain aspects of life. Sadly sometimes this can’t be done, and that hurts me.  Anything involving children at work is extremely traumatic, you cope, but never want it repeated, ever!!  I don’t really know why I chose this harrowing topic, maybe to highlight it does happen behind closed doors (more than people like to think) to make people more aware, to watch for the signs/changes in children, in order to save them! The main point is that children aren’t children forever, and the damage they carry & conceal both mentally and physically never leaves them!

E Hamilton:

Very true. It’s an area I could never work in either.

What made you decide to give your detective a female partner in her love life and a male partner in her working life?

Lee Cockburn:

The main female character is gay because I can relate to her, more than I’d like to say.  Her partner is male because at work you are usually paired with someone of the opposite sex, and my favourite partner in my service is male.  Re the book, I wanted an honest, good looking male, polar opposite of Taylor that many women could be attracted to and want someone like that in their lives. Marcus would be my perfect man if I was that way inclined.

‘I…can’t really explain where the darkness in my books comes from.’

E Hamilton:

‘Porcelain’ is a sequel to ‘Devil’s Demise’, published in 2014. What did you learn from writing and publishing the first book that you have taken with you to bring to this book?

Lee Cockburn:

I have learned that not everyone will like it and you can’t please everyone, although many really do like my books and find them thrilling and a little arousing, some that you never imagined would!  I know the first chapter of book one was a bit too brutal, although it was a female colleague of mine that suggested it wasn’t brutal enough, so I regretfully changed it, and it made me uncomfortable reading it, and I wrote it.  Porcelain’s first chapter is shorter, equally horrific to imagine, but let’s the reader know what a tragic and sad start to life these little mites had, and why things happen later on. 

E Hamilton:

Yes, it’s a very sad opening, and it’s immediately obvious that such horrific trauma will have consequences.

Your chapters are very short and focused on intense dramatic scenes. Is this the kind of writing you like to read yourself?

Lee Cockburn:

I would love to read books like that, but other than the Da Vinci code, there aren’t many, so far that is, although there are many enjoyable books out there.

E Hamilton:

This is a very challenging case, complete with personal trauma for your officers. What will come next for Detective Sergeant Taylor Nicks?

Lee Cockburn:

Now that would be telling, but book three is well under way, another unfortunate tale of human cruelty and greed, with a thread following through from the first two books. A little insight into Taylor, and maybe some happier story lines for many of the main characters.

I hope this explains me a little, I am a happy go lucky fun loving humorous lass, and can’t really explain where the darkness in my books comes from.

E Hamilton:

I think your characters have definitely earned a little happiness!

Many thanks for answering my questions and giving your readers a deeper insight into ‘Porcelain’.

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‘Porcelain’ by Lee Cockburn is published by Clink Street Publishing.