Simon has been a published author in the UK and the USA since the late 1980s (St Martins Press, WH Allen, Grafton Press and others). He also has experience writing for the screen. Simon is today probably most recognisable as the author of the best-selling Charles Holborne thriller series published by Sapere Books. The series features his antihero barrister, an East End villain made good, battling the prejudices of the 1960s, the Kray twins and the corrupt Metropolitan Police. Frequently called ‘the British John Grisham’, the Charles Holborne series draws from the headlines of the day, the criminal cases in which Simon was instructed and his own family history. Refugees from the Spanish Inquisition, the Michael family arrived in the Port of London in 1492 and remained in the East End for the next 450 years. Simon believes himself to be the only member of the Honourable Society of the Middle Temple formerly to have been a council labourer, a van driver and a gardener. Having been called to the Bar, he practised as a barrister for 37 years, working at the Old Bailey and other criminal courts, defending and prosecuting a wide selection of murderers, armed robbers, con artists and other assorted villainy, gathering enough real life stories to populate an entire series of crime fiction.
Simon also writes in other genres and has written romantic fiction, including the Cosmopolitan Short Story Prize shortlisted ‘Split’, and speculative fiction. He performs his one-man show, My Life in Crime, approximately 50 times a year at literary festivals, libraries and to Women’s Institutes, Probus, U3A and Rotary groups.
I’ll be talking to Simon about the Charles Holborne series, and about his writing, inspirations and influences. And, of course, he’ll be sharing her selections for this week’s Apocalypse Books.
Catch the show on Saturday at 2pm on 106.6FM (if you’re in the North Manchester area) or listen online (if you’re further afield).
Missed the show? You can catch it again here: