Alan Watson started life in a small southern UK town, Swindon. “Not at all exciting,” he tells the Reporter, “unless you like trains, car factories and real ale pubs.”
A sales director position in a London advertising agency took Alan to every European capital and most of the Middle East; at age 33, he trained as a money manager: “The investment world was still in the grey old days of offshore banking, no questions asked. Clients seriously gave a handful of cash to be invested, and the bank took it without questions. Dull under-performing funds and the euro were far-off prospects.”
Some 25 years later, with a Dutch wife and two teenage sons, Alan now runs his business from his home in the Savoy region of France. It’s no coincidence then that Alan’s thriller Hidden Assets (CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform), about a group of wealthy expats living in a château, who are being targeted as tax dodgers by the French fisc, takes place near the French Alps.
“Yes, the international characters, the château, location and even the nasty bits have been experienced,” he explains, “but it’s a hot topic, something readers can immediately relate to.”
Working through the 252 pages, I kept asking myself: “What do I want to happen to these characters? Should I feel sympathetic towards these guys who, like so many others, are playing the system?”
Surely that’s the sign of an ample storyteller, when the plot outcome consumes the reader’s thoughts outside of reading time.