A is for Anna. Tourist guide in London by day, jazz pianist and vocalist by night, trudging from club to club, hoping for that one breakthrough that will change her life.

Careful what you wish for.

B is for Books, the only true companions Jon Kavanagh has ever found in life. People lie. People cheat. Books provide a refuge, a world to which he can retreat when life lets him down . . . which it does repeatedly.

Bomb blast. It nearly took Kavanagh’s life, it may yet take his sight, even 30 years later. Time is not on his side

Barney the dinosaur. Don’t ask. You’ll need to read it to find out.

C is for Cristianos or Cristi’s to use its more familiar shortened form. Fictitious restaurant and night club on the outskirts of Praia D’El Rey on Portugal’s Silver Coast. The resort is real and a wonderful holiday destination, the last place you’d ever come across someone like Vic Abraham.

Cristi’s was invented to provide a stark contrast to the natural beauty and tranquility of the surroundings.

D is for Durdle Door in Dorset, part of the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site. Many people will either have visited it or seen photos of the iconic rock formation and the paths that lead up from Lulworth Cove and over the hill.

Some people actually run up the series of steps to the top. Others prefer to smile and say they could have done it when they were younger. It’s not far from Wareham where Jon Kavanagh now owns a bookshop, having left behind his life in London.


E is for Enforcer. This used to be Kavanagh’s role in the Syndicate once he’d left the army. He’s followed Maurice there, in search of family, a place where he belongs. He thinks he’s found it. He’s wrong.

F is for Family. There is a large hole in Kavanagh’s life, hollowed out by a series of tragedies and betrayals. It’s only when he leaves London and arrives in Wareham that he realises he’s been looking in the wrong place all this time.

Fast-tracked. Kavanagh’s rapid progress through the ranks of the Syndicate to a position of trusted lieutenant is viewed by Vic Abraham as misplaced loyalty bordering on nepotism. He is not someone you upset without consequences.