In January 2010 Janet Holt contacted me in my capacity as a ghostwriter to ask if I would help her write her life story.
She told me that her life as a farmer in Derbyshire had been full of “funny stories and amusing anecdotes” but, after talking to her on the ‘phone, it quickly transpired that her story was touched with tragedy.
‘This must have been a difficult process and it’s apparent from other reviews that it wasn’t only for Janet that this was difficult. But sometimes a story has to be told and my overwhelming feeling, having read this book, is one of profound respect for Janet and her co-author.’
When Janet first called me she had no idea why she had been suffering horrific nightmares for 34 years; nightmares that left her sobbing in her bed and she also had no idea why she ‘lost’ five days of her life in March 1976.
When she woke up on 19 March, 1976 her business partner, Fred Handford, had disappeared.
‘A fabulously written memoir’
Our book, The Stranger In My Life, which was written over two and a half years, is a piecing together of what actually happened to Fred Handford using archived newspaper reports, interviews with police, relatives, friends and Janet’s ex-boss and lover of 17 years. There are detailed discussions with Fred’s daughter (now aged 60) and Fred’s sister (93) both of whom had reason to believe Janet may have murdered Fred.
THE BLOG ON THIS WEBSITE IS TAKEN FROM MY ACTUAL NOTES, STEP BY STEP AS JANET’S STORY UNRAVELLED