Heather Rosser

Novelist, Memoirist and Educational Author

© 2013 Heather Rosser


In the Line of Duty

This First World War novel was published by New Generation Publishing in May 2014. ISBN 978-1-910266-07-6

The title reflects the romance of railway journeys as well as the conflicts between duty and desire ever prevalent in war-time. It is partly based on my mother’s memories of the family’s Welsh holiday home built by my great-grandfather who was a railway police detective with offices in Euston and Llandudno Junction. His son, my grandfather, was a locomotive engineer until he enlisted as a seaplane pilot with the Royal Naval Air Service.

It was only after she died I discovered my mother had only told me part of the story and there were questions I should have asked.

* Who was her older half-brother, indulged by their grandmother, but side-lined by the rest of the family? My mother once whispered that he was ‘a product of the First World War’ but the words meant nothing to me then.

* What was the reason behind the sudden termination of my grandfather’s service as a seaplane pilot in 1917?

As I learned more about using seaplanes for aerial reconnaissance, I glimpsed the nightmare world my grandfather inhabited and the grimness of everyday life for those left struggling at home. My novel is no longer my family’s story. It is woven around characters of my own creation and is a tale of love, duty, betrayal and, ultimately, redemption.

In the Line of Duty was short listed for the Joan Hessayon award for debut novelists who have been through the RNA New Writers Scheme.

The author’s grandparents

ISBN 978-1-910266-07-6