Lincolnshire Echo

Cold Heart, Cruel Hand

Author - Laurence J Brown

Hollywood Hopes for County Author

10:30 - 20 July 2004

It started as a way of relieving stress but the lurid pen and vivid imagination that spawned the latest novel from lawyer Laurence Brown could lead to a Hollywood blockbuster.

I'm told that the books Housecarl and Cold Heart, Cruel Hand, written by Laurence, have been sent to film producer Barry Spikings, who says they have potential.

Set in the Fens, the books tell stories of blood, battles, and treachery and are billed as being for fans of history but presented in a new millennium style.

The action in the second book of the series takes place in the years 1070-1072 and sees hundreds of men dying when the Bailey bridges and causeways of reed beds and bridges were cut away or burned across treacherous marshes. Horses are tipped into bogs and Normans are sent to the mist-shrouded marshland. Crowland in Lincolnshire is mentioned, along with neighbouring towns, villages and cities in Cambridge and Norfolk such as Wisbech, Ely, Peterborough and Wroxham.

Laurence's first novel called Housecarl introduces us to the hero, King Harold's elite guard Ranulf Redbeard, and his family, along with a host of other colourful characters.

His new work called Cold Heart Cruel Hand follows on from Housecarl and tells of the carnage that occurred in the five weeks of 1066 which changed the course of British history forever.

Packed with intrigue, sex, romance, and drama, Ranulf is a daring fighter who teams up with the charismatic Hereward the Wake.

I'm told that Boston publisher Paul Mould has contacts in Hollywood and that's how both books ended up in the lap of film moguls.

Former Boston Grammar School student Barry Spikings has replied to Paul's letter, saying there could be films in the books.

Laurence (47), who began writing to relieve the stress of the legal profession, is delighted at the latest twist in the novels' tale, but the jury is still out as to whether they will be on the big screen soon.

Trevor Reynolds of The Lincolnshire Echo