The inimitable crime writer speaks to World of Cruising.

Star on board: Lynda La Plante

Author: Kaye Holland

Published on:

Bestselling crime writer, Lynda La Plante, on the joys of cruising, her dislike of airports and why you can’t beat a full English breakfast

Lynda La Plante, one of the country's best known crime writers, took time out from her busy schedule to speak with World of Cruising...

What was your first cruise holiday and where did you go?

My very first cruise was onboard Queen Mary 2. However, as a teenager I spent a summer crewing on luxury yachts around the Mediterranean.

What do you love most about cruise holidays?
I think it's that you get to visit a number of different ports and destinations in just one trip.

Can you share with us what will you be talking about on your forthcoming Cunard Literary cruise?
My long career as an actor, screenwriter, producer and author; the characters I’ve played on stage; and those I have created for my books and TV series. There’s a lot to cover and I hope it will be entertaining.

What sort of books do you like to read at sea?
I mostly read non-fiction, but on the upcoming QM2 transatlantic cruise, I’ll be reading my fellow shipmate Val McDermid’s new book Past Lying. I’ll also take the manuscript of my own memoir – it's going to published next year, and I need to edit it.

Queen Mary 2 is a British transatlantic ocean liner. Credit: Cunard

Have you ever seen someone reading one of your books on a cruise?
Not yet, but I hopefully one day. I don’t think you ever get over the thrill of seeing someone holding and reading a copy of a book you have written. I also love hearing feedback from readers through my website or via Twitter @laplantelynda

Do you get recognised when you sail?
Sometimes – people usually ask me if I was in Rentaghost, which I was. I also get asked what colour dye I use for my hair!

What’s your top travel tip?
Always ask for a room away from the elevators, and make sure you have a good pillow.

Is there one thing that would make your travel life easier?
That's easy: avoiding airports. I don’t like all the queuing and faffing – by the time I land, I just want to get home.

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What do you like to eat and drink at sea?
A full English for breakfast, followed by light lunch, and then G&T around 4pm. In the evening, I like steak and chips accompanied by a nice glass of wine. Perfect.

Which destinations are still on your bucket-list and why?
Where do I start... Sydney, Hawaii, Alaska, Panama, and Tuvalu are all high on my bucket list. Looking for any speakers for these destinations, Cunard?

Who would be your ideal cruise travelling companion and why?
My Borzoi, Hugo. I’d definitely bring Hugo onboard a Cunard ship – I hear the kennels are wonderful and that the dogs are really pampered.

If I were to host a fantasy dinner party with famous guests onboard, I’d invite Hedy Lamar, Patricia Cornwell, Joan Rivers, Ann Mitchell, Napoleon and Queen Elizabeth II.

Lynda La Plante will be taking part in Cunard's Literature Festival At Sea. This seven night cruise departs November 19, 2023 and sails from Southampton to New York. Fares from £629 per person.

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About Kaye Holland

Kaye is a London-based wordsmith who has written for a range of publications including The Times, The Independent, The I, Culture Trip, The Sun, and ABTA among others. In June 2022, Kaye joined the Real Response Media where she looks – together with Lucy Abbott – after the World of Cruising website. Want to get in touch? Kaye can be reached at: [email protected]