Just received the sad news that my agent, Carolyn Whitaker, passed away last Friday after a long illness. In a long career Carolyn discovered and represented many fine writers, always offering sound editorial advice – if she didn’t like some aspect of a manuscript she wasn’t afraid to tell it straight! Which, of course, is exactly what a writer needs in order to polish a story and make it as good as possible (Picking up the phone, I was always ready to take it on the chin). I shall always be grateful to her for taking me on back in 2004 and subsequently placing my debut novel, Resistance, with Random House and the terrific commissioning editor Charlie Sheppard (now Anderson Press) and editor Shannon Cullen (Penguin-Random House). In recent years, I also always enjoyed hearing about Carolyn’s other passion – horse racing – and getting the latest info on how her nags were doing.