Norfolk author’s robot butler gets caught up in an underworld of crime

Martin Ungless receives first proof of Duck Egg Blues (a)

Prize-winning author Martin Ungless, from Kenninghall near Diss, has just published his first book, Duck Egg Blues, on Amazon.

Cover, Duck Egg Blues (a)

The architect-turned-writer won an Escalator Prize from the Writers' Centre in Norwich and was shortlisted twice for a Debut Dagger by the Crime Writers' Association.

His self-effacing robot butler character first surfaced when the writer entered a short story competition.

Such was the robot detective's popularity that the Kenninghall resident went on to use him in his thriller.

'The robot butler sees everything and is only trying to do his best but somehow gets implicated in a murder,' Mr Ungless explained.

'You live with a novel for a long time so I feel a sense of satisfaction, exhilaration and excitement at finishing the book.

'At the same time I felt exhaustion and relief after a six-month editing process.

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'Almost from the beginning I imagined it as a series. In fact I'm now busy plotting the next book.

'My wife also writes and we sit opposite each other - its useful to have a first reader who's an expert critic.

'Sometimes you feel huffy with the comments but you realise they were right all along - we are not harsh in offering our critiques.

'The book is selling well and the great thing about the Amazon route is you can track your sales.'

PArdew the robot yearns to perform his robot butler duties but soon finds himself thwarting car thieves, helping track a fugitive and even rescuing a puppy for a little girl.

At the same time he must make sure he does not get kidnapped, and must keep his master safe from thugs and government agencies.

The author says Duck Egg Blues was written as a light-hearted adult thriller but is proving particularly popular with older teens.

And if you like Raymond Chandler, PG Wodehouse, Isaac Asimov or Douglas Adams the book is definitely the thriller you've been waiting for.