Unemployed and penniless, Stephen Jones accepts an offer to move to London to work for his brother’s furniture restoration business. But when he arrives, he learns his brother, Peter, is dead, and he inherited the business, including all his brother’s assets. Determined to find answers, Stephen sets out to keep his Inheritance afloat and find his brother’s killer.

But the deeper he delves into Peter’s affairs, the more Stephen begins to unravel the web of lies covering the shady underside of the business and the truth of who his brother was. Torn between vengeance and protecting his new livelihood, With the help of his newfound love Tara, Stephen must learn to distinguish between friend and foe before he shares his brother’s fate.

Harmful Inheritance is a gripping mystery about the secrets hidden in shadows and the fine line one walks between vengeance and justice.

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Excerpt from Harmful Inheritance © Copyright 2023 John T Peters


Blue lights flashing and police tape obstructed my path to enter my brother Peter’s flat above his antique and furniture restoration business in West Hampstead, London. He had kindly rescued me from unemployment and offered me a job as his assistant.

I tried to gain entrance by the side door, but a sternlooking police constable stopped me. ‘You are not allowed to enter. There has been a shooting.’ He must have realised I was no casual spectator from my suitcase and immediately asked. ‘Who are you, and what do you want?’

I explained, flashing my passport. ‘I am Peter’s brother from South Africa. I am coming to stay with him.’

The constable asked me to wait while he reported to his senior officer. A somewhat friendlier man dressed in a plain suit came over and introduced himself. ‘I am Chief Inspector Metcalfe. I am sorry to inform you that someone murdered your brother last night. You better come in. Please be careful of the areas taped off. We are still doing a thorough search.’

I placed my suitcase in the spare bedroom. The whole apartment was in shambles, but there was no point in tidying up until the police had completed the forensic work. The intruder was looking for something. I wondered what it was and who would want to murder my brother; he was the kindest and friendliest person I knew. It must have been a burglary gone wrong.

I arrived earlier that day on Flight BA054 at Heathrow Airport, London. It was my first trip to England–to anywhere, for that matter. I felt exhausted and needed a shave. My battery razor was on the brink.

After leaving the plane, my first stop was immigration. Thanks to my father, who comes from Llansteffan in Wales, I had a British passport and did not have to join the queue for foreign travellers.

Next was customs clearance. I had a single suitcase and walked through the green exit as I had nothing to declare.

I lost my job with Telkom in South Africa at thirty. They laid off twenty per cent of the workforce.

Finding decent work was nearly impossible for white South Africans due to a new policy aimed at rectifying past apartheid wrongs called Black Economic Empowerment.

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