Trailblazer Novel For Fire HQ Office Worker

Fire service colleagues take a peek at Jenny Blackhurst's debut novel: left to right Maxine Titley, Jenny, Rachel Harrison and Dan Adams

An admin assistant at Shrewsbury fire HQ is all “fired up” after her debut crime novel hit number one in the Amazon e-book best seller list.

Author Jenny Blackhurst’s fast paced psychological thriller HOW I LOST YOU has been a sure fire hit with work colleagues at Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service and the wider reading public after staying in the number one spot for nearly a month.

“It has all been quite exciting,” said Jenny, who has a Master’s degree in occupational psychology.

Colleagues have been snapping up copies of the “unputdownable” book praised on Amazon as a “brilliant, compulsive, thought provoking thriller,” which keeps the reader guessing right to the end.

She began writing the book - about a young mum jailed with no memory of killing her baby - after being made redundant as manager of a women’s clothing store.

“I had a month old baby and needed to get my identity back. I’ve always loved writing so I picked up a pen,” said Jenny (31), an ex pupil of Sundorne School, Shrewsbury.

She began her first book during national novel writing month and made a second attempt at writing for Debut Dagger, a competition by the Crime Writers’ Association for new, unpublished writers.

Despite “not getting anywhere,” Jenny persevered and later received interest from two publishers for her first completed novel.

Now putting the finishing touches to her second novel and with a book deal for a third from Headline Publishing Group, Jenny said she is more than content to carry on working in admin support in the Community Fire Risk Management Systems department.

“I don’t think I want to be a full time writer. I enjoy coming to work at Shrewsbury fire HQ and having a steady income. I’d be frightened to death that my books wouldn’t sell.”

Colleagues are also wondering if they may end up as characters in the next novel.

“Because I studied psychology at university, I am a good judge of character and I do watch people for inspiration but hopefully nobody will recognise themselves in future books,” said Jenny, a mother of two boys, aged four and 12 months, who lives with her husband in Shrewsbury.

HOW I LOST YOU can be viewed at







12th November, 2015