Anne Summer: An Inspirational Woman by Hannah Howe
Below is a photograph of Anne Summer taken from her autobiography, ‘But I Couldn’t Do That!’ Anne was a private detective in the 1960s and she is one of the real- life inspirations behind my fictional detective, Sam Smith.
A convent-educated girl (an education she loathed) Anne married a London lawyer, only to separate in 1964. She was twenty-seven at the time and the pressures of the separation, along with her husband gaining custody of her son, led to serious physical and emotional health problems for Anne. She sought professional help and embarked upon the road to recovery.
Laura is a romantic detective story with an original plot. It is also one of my favourite films. The film was released in 1944 with a storyline adapted from Vera Caspary’s (1899 – 1987) novel.
The plot centres on hard-boiled detective Mark McPherson and his attempts to solve the murder of Laura Hunt, whose face has been rendered unrecognisable after a shotgun blast. The suspects are wealthy snobs who annoy McPherson as much as he annoys them. Apart from their wealth, the one thing these suspects have in common is that they all loved Laura.
Carpal tunnel is a condition where structures of the carpal tunnel put pressure on the nerves. The carpal tunnel is a narrow passageway in the wrist, about an inch wide. The floor and sides of the tunnel are formed by small wrist bones called carpal bones. The median nerve and flexor tendons that bend the fingers and thumb run through this structure.
Tingling, pain, numbness, and burning can all be felt when pressure is put on the median nerve. This can vary in severity from mild discomfort to fiery pain and total loss of function. So how does this happen? Usually it’s caused from inflammation and irritation in that area. The carpal tunnel is small, so it does not take a lot of irritation to start putting pressure on the median nerve. Every time you grip something, use your thumb, or bend the wrist you are moving those flexor tendons. Now imagine the fan belt, or any belt for that matter, in your car. It’s made to move, constantly. But it can fray and sometimes wear down and become damaged if it’s been used a long time. The same goes for the flexor tendons. Overuse often cause irritation, inflammation, and sometimes damage can occur. When this happens, increased pressure is put on the median nerve causing the symptoms of carpal tunnel.
Daniel Morgan, my advocate in Saving Grace, was influenced by Sir William Garrow, pictured (13th April 1760 – 24th September 1840). Garrow was a barrister, politician and judge who radically reformed the judical system. Indeed, his reforms ushered in the adversarial court system used in most common law nations today. He introduced the phrase “presumed innocent until proven guilty”, and insisted that defendants’ accusers and their evidence should be thoroughly tested in court.
The 1960s opened with the Shadows and Cliff Richard dominating the charts. The Shadows, who began as the Drifters, only to change their moniker because of the American band of the same name, had their first hit with Apache. However, even that success pales when compared to Cliff Richard, who had six hits in 1960. A year later Elvis Presley had five top twenty hits, including four number ones, and Chubby Checker got everyone on the dance floor doing the Twist. By now, trad jazz was in full swing with hits for Acker Bilk, Kenny Ball and Dave Brubeck.
WOMEN AND WEIGHTLIFTING – WHAT ARE WE SO AFRAID OF BY CHRISTINE ARDIGO
Many years ago, I belonged to an all woman’s gym. I’d strut in with my fluorescent orange leotard, tie dye bike shorts and perfect white Reeboks and head straight to the aerobics room. My friend and I parked ourselves in the front of the class to get a good view of the teacher. Freestyle music blasted from her Boombox and after carefully following her choreographed dance steps, our arms flailing overhead, we left thinking we transformed our bodies. One day, after many years, I strolled towards the aerobics room ready for my step class and spied the weight machines in the adjoining room. They laid there untouched, alone and abandoned. Why wasn’t anyone using them?
I looked around, no one was watching, and crept over to a funky machine with a bar dangling from the top. Dust consumed the seating bench and also the black rectangular weights that encompassed this massive machine. A small card demonstrated the procedure for performing this exercise.
All of my writing has horses in there somewhere and that’s not just because of a lifelong obsession with them! I have worked for a long time in horse based therapy and they do indeed reflect how we are feeling.
In Challenger, Joanna, Diane and Ray find the answers to a lot of their problems and begin healing the rifts between them on an equine-assisted therapy weekend. But is this really true? Can this happen?