Thoughts and news from the author:
On Sunday 28th June 1942 F/Sgt Dennis Copping took off from an RAF landing ground near Alexandria in northern Egypt for a short flight east and
was never seen again. In March 2012 his aeroplane, Kittyhwawk ET574 was found virtually intact 300 miles into the Sahara desert but there was no sign of the pilot.
Why did Copping, an experienced fighter pilot, fly so far off course and what happened to him?
My forthcoming book 'Kittyhawk Down - Dennis Copping & ET574' suggests reasons for this in a fascinating tale of wartime mystery and human
endeavour. From extensive research Jonathan Nicholas has pieced together the last twelve months of Copping's life before his disappearance and using real places, names and incidents it becomes clear
exactly what happened.
'Kittyhawk Down' will be published in 2020.
Cherry Picking - Life between the Sticks' Steve Cherry with Jonathan Nicholas
'Cherry Picking - Life between the Sticks' is now available on Amazon after being taken on by traditional
publisher The Book Guild, in both paperback and ebook format.
Steve was a top goalkeeper for thirty years at Derby County, Notts County, Walsall and Plymouth Argyle amongst many others,
capped for England Youth several times and played under Brian Clough and Neil Warnock. Steve was at Notts County in their recent glory days between 1989 and 1995 when Neil Warnock took them from the
bottom of Division Three to the top table of English football. Neil is currently in the news as you know, following his success at Cardiff City.
'Cherry Picking' has been written for general football readers but it will also appeal to
non-football fans, aspiring youngsters, and the rapidly growing women's football market. It is not therefore exclusively a man's book; there is no sexism, no violence, no boring football statistics,
and no gratuitous swearing. His story takes him from the very start, detailing his life between the sticks until he hangs up his boots, with some of his best games picked for inclusion in the book.
Sadly far too many football biographies suffer from frequent info dumps which are clearly nothing more than padding. This book is different. It is unique.
'Active' was released in 2017 under the pen name of Dan Hastings. A dark dystopian thriller with a warning about extremism and subjugation, inspired by Orwell's '1984', Atwood's 'The Handmaid's
Tale' and Bradbury's 'Fahrenheit 451'.
Very pleased with this CBS Reality clip. It can be viewed by copying the following link:
The incident in this clip is described in detail in the book 'Who'd be a copper?'
''Cherry Picking' - #1 on Amazon in Hot New Releases in Football Books, Feb & March 2019
CBS Reality TV have started broadcasting short pieces between programmes from emergency service workers in Britain called 'This is my reality'. There are representatives from the RNLI, ambulance paramedics, firemen etc. I recorded a few pieces about some of the incidents I dealt with in my police career, all of which are described in detail in my books 'Hospital Beat' and 'Who'd be a copper?'
Channel 146 on Sky, 148 on Virgin, and 135 on Freesat.
29th September 2015
A reasonable pose... but dog remains unimpressed!
On the Halfpenny Bridge over the Liffey, Dublin.
Trying to get animals to pose for photographs..!
A fine sunny day in O'Connell Street, Dublin! I have been contacted by several Garda in Ireland praising 'Who'd be a Copper?' Thank you!
'Kibbutz Virgin', read on a boat in France. Thanks Martin!
A brilliant reader's photo - from the Colosseum in Rome - Thanks Nick!
Another reader's photo, this one from the set of 'Coronation Street' - Thanks Trevor!
Readers sometimes send me photos of them on holiday reading my books. Thanks Andy!
(You can see others on Facebook and Twitter @JonathanNichol4)
An email recently from Sir Tom Winsor, the current HMCIC, Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Constabulary. He's the chap appointed by the UK government to review policing in the UK. He might want to start his review all over again if/when he reads 'Who'd be a copper?'
I'm certain he won't have read anything like it before!
Wednesday 10th June 2015:
'Who'd be a copper?' at #1 and 'Hospital Beat' at #2 in Police Biographies. Thank you!
'Who'd be a copper?' went straight to #1 in police biographies on
Amazon as soon as it was released, and has stayed at or close to the top ever since. A huge and very humble thankyou to all concerned!
March 11th 2015
The launch party and book signing for this book on Saturday 7th March 2015 at The Galleries of Justice Museum, Nottingham, was a great success. It was a truly humbling experience to see so many people there! It was a wonderful day. I bored people for a while with a bit of a speech, but despite this a lot of people still bought a book!
Despite 'Who'd be a copper?' being my fifth book, this was the first time I have held a book launch. In typical Gestapo style the police banned me from any such public celebrations while still a
Amazon UK link to buy the paperback:
Amazon link to buy the ebook:
7th November 2014:
'Who'd be a copper?' now has an initial entry on my publisher's website at www.troubador.co.uk/matador, listed with my other books.
October 23rd 2014:
Further extracts from 'Who'd be a copper?' added to the excerpts section. Thoughts of idiot gaffers, mindless paperwork, bizarre political correctness, and eating my cereal in the gent's toilets (yes, there was a good reason for it!)
September 24th 2014
I've listed the excerpts of 'Hospital Beat' the police didn't like, and which caused the book to be banned for fifteen months. Have a look and see if you agree! They are listed with the details of the book in the Books section of this website.
My second visit to Oradour-sur-Glane in central France. This sleepy village in beautiful countryside a few miles north west of Limoges stands as a permanent reminder of what hatred can do. A group of German SS troops came by on the afternoon of June 10th 1944 and killed all the villagers in cold blood, 642 people, including 196 children. The French preserved the scene in its entirity and rebuilt a new village nearby. The car belonged to a doctor who drove down to investigate the noise and was also shot.
At the entrance to the village, Oradour-sur-Glane.
'Oz - A Hitchhiker's Australian Anthology'
is now available, in both Kindle and paperback versions!
On a recent return visit to Israel I recovered this jagged piece of steel rocket shrapnel from the roof terrace of our hotel in Tel Aviv, just after one of the many 'alerts'. Memories of the first time
I was subjected to such rocket attacks back in 1978, as detailed in my book Kibbutz Virgin. A very unusual holiday souvenir!
A visit to Jersey in the British Channel Islands was extremely interesting. It was the only part of Britain occupied by the Nazis in World War Two, and a clear taste of what could have happened to the rest of the UK.
Fifty British police officers worked with the Nazis on Jersey in WW2.
Life under Nazi occupation.
Some of the extensive tunnel network in Jersey built by the Germans using forced labour.
Sifting through yet more source material for my forthcoming book about my 30 years as a constable in the British police, 'Who'd be a Copper?'
A return visit to northern Germany where I once lived in this huge old house with Polish and Irish workers. I spent a crazy summer here and intend writing about the experience soon.
The house was known locally as : Die Irische Tollhaus
(The Irish madhouse)
I spent a few interesting weeks in Australia in connection with
my new book 'Oz- A Hitchhiker's Australian Anthology'. I have included more photographs in the New Books section of the website.
Saturday 13th April 2013:
I had a phone call earlier this week from a man I've met before and I arranged to see him yesterday. He wanted me to sign a copy of 'Kibbutz Virgin' which had just arrived. What an absolute honour and privilege it is to do this. Such things never cease to amaze and flatter me. It doesn't often happen, as on the few occasions when people grab my hand and shake it, telling me how much they enjoyed reading one of my books. A lovely experience every time.
Kibbutz Dafna revisited, November 2013:
Walking into Kibbutz Dafna, Israel, November 2013, 34 years since I left.
The view from just outside the back gates of Kibbutz Dafna. The hills are the Golan Heights and just the other side is Damascus and Syria. November 2013
The Old Bridge over the River Dan between Kibbutz Dafna and Kibbutz Dan, then and now. November 2013
The room I shared with John, Graham, Chris and Barclay. Now with a beautiful huge flowering tree growing over the miklat. Kibbutz Dafna, November 2013.
Looking down into the miklat nearest to our room. Kibbutz Dafna, November 2013
The room I rented in November 2013 on Kibbutz Dafna. It is a refurbished volunteer's room. My bed was under the window at the far side and there would have been two or three more beds in this room, and no TV or air conditioning!
No doubt this might be a sad sight for some of Kibbutz Dafna's ex-volunteers: Demolition of 'Volunteer's Row', otherwise known as 'Death Row'. If walls could talk.... April 2014.
Waiting for the 842 Egged bus north to Kiryat Shmona from Tel Aviv bus station.
Sunset at the back of Kibbutz Dafna just outside the top gate. As the sun sinks below the Naftali Hills and Kiryat Shmona, The Platters start to sing Twilight Time on the Voice of Peace.
Some of the old volunteer's quarters, Kibbutz Dafna. Nov 2013.
The place of arrival and departure: Kiryat Shmona bus station, where friends left and hearts were broken.