Anna Smith’s Partner in Crime

Every superhero needs a sidekick so why not every detective? In our PARTNER IN CRIME feature authors tell us who they would pair their lead character up with. Anna Smith tells us who she think the perfect partner for Rosie Gilmour would be...

Posted on January 12, 2016 in Guest Author
Tags: Irish Crime, anna smith, partner in crime

IT’S not everyone who gritty journalist, Rosie Gilmour, can work with. She’s tough and uncompromising, has a fixed disregard for authority, and has spent much of her life tearing down the walls of the establishment in the pursuit of truth. So she wouldn’t be an ideal partner in crime to work with a detective, given that she’s exposed a few corrupt ones in the front page of her daily newspaper, the Post. But the one fictional detective she could do business with is DCI Andy Gilchrist, from the fantastic crime series by TF Muir.

Set in the picturesque seaside town of St Andrew’s, it’s a different and surprising backdrop from the usual crime thrillers, based in drug infested, crime ridden cities. But it’s a refreshing twist, and the Gilchrist character who drives Muir’s stories, is hugely appealing. He and Rosie just might get along. They are both workaholics, with troubled personal lives, and a history that leaves them cynical as well as vulnerable.

Rosie has her childhood demons – continually haunted by the nightmares of how she lost her mother so cruelly. She seems to immerse herself in work as a some form of escape so she doesn’t have to look inside herself, therefore her personal relationships are pretty messed up.

The same goes for Gilchrist.

The detective has two grown up kids, a failed marriage, and has had to watch from the sidelines as his ex wife dies of cancer, and he faces the slow realisation that he wasn’t there enough for his children throughout their lives. He is plagued with regret and recrimination.

Rosie grew up in the streets of Glasgow, and as a rookie journalist watched the city ravaged by the heroin epidemic, as gangsters ran and ruined communities. She punched above her weight in the male dominated editorial floor of a daily newspaper and is the Post’s Investigations Editor – but still a reporter at heart, so ends up at the frontline of all her stories, often just escaping death by the skin of her teeth.

Gilchrist battled through the ranks to become a top detective, despite the backstabbing along the way, and is therefore a cynical, watchful figure. He is constantly falling out with his bosses –  pushes back the boundaries during and investigation, just like Rosie. He doesnt always play by the book, and neither does she as she often doesn’t tell her editor, Mick McGuire what she’s doing until she’s done it!

She is fiesty, and a law unto herself. She makes her own rules, decides where the line is drawn.

The sparks would fly if Rosie worked with Gilchrist, because a police investigation is different from a newspaper investigation. With the police, there is a different burden of proof. They have to build up a case that they can be able to prosecute, and the goal is to get a conviction in court.

In Rosie’s case, a newspaper story has to be true, and she must be able to stand it up. So I can see how they could clash if they worked together. But they are both committed to their work and throw themselves at it with a passion. Rosie and Gilchrist are a little bleak and gloomy by nature and life experience, but they would recognise that in each other, and I could see them working well together in between the fiery clashes!

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