Hugh Ashton was born in the UK in 1956, and after graduation from university worked in the technology industry around Cambridge (the first personal computer he used was Sir Clive Sinclair’s personal TRS-80) until 1988, when a long-standing interest in the country took him to Japan.
There he worked for a Japanese company producing documentation for electronic instruments and high-end professional audio equipment, helped to set up the infrastructure for Japan’s first public Internet service provider, worked for major international finance houses, and worked on various writing projects, including interviewing figures in the business and scientific fields, and creating advertorial reports for Japanese corporations to be reprinted in international business magazines.
Along the way, he met and married Yoshiko, and also gained certificates in tea ceremony and iaidō (the art of drawing a sword quickly).
In 2008, he wrote and self-published his first published novel, Beneath Gray Skies, an alternative history in which the American Civil War was never fought, and the independent Confederacy forms an alliance with the German National Socialist party. This was followed by At the Sharpe End, a techno-financial-thriller set in Japan at the time of the Lehman’s crash, and Red Wheels Turning, which re-introduced Brian Finch-Malloy, the hero of Beneath Gray Skies, referred to by one reviewer as “a 1920s James Bond”.
In 2012, Inknbeans Press of California published his first collection of Sherlock Holmes adventures, Tales from the Deed Box of John H. Watson M.D., which was swiftly followed by many other volumes of Holmes’ adventures, hailed by Sherlockians round the world as being true to the style and the spirit of the originals by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Inknbeans also published Tales of Old Japanese and other books by Ashton, including the Sherlock Ferret series of detective adventures for children. He and Yoshiko returned to the UK in 2016 for family reasons, where they now live in the Midlands cathedral city of Lichfield.
In December 2017, Inknbeans Press ceased to be, following the sudden death of the proprietor, chief editor and leading light. Since that time, Ashton has reclaimed the copyright of his work, and has republished it in ebook and paper editions, along with the work of several other former Inknbeans authors.
He continues to write Sherlock Holmes stories, as well as various other fiction and non-fiction projects, including documentation for forensic software, and editing and layout work on a freelance basis, in between studying for an MSc in forensic psychological studies with the Open University.
Science fiction, set Paris in the 1890s. Jules Gauthier and his love Agathe Lamartine explore the mysterious state beyond time and space discovered by her father, Professor Rémy Lamartine.
But they are not alone there – monsters beyond all imagination lurk in the Untime.
Orphaned Jane Machin journeys across late eighteenth century Europe, in an attempt to discover her true nature, and to seek revenge on the being from the other side of the sky who claims to be her father. On The Other Side of the Sky blends real historical personages and events with alchemy, traditional folklore, the Rosicxrucian tradition, and Kabbala.
Eleven stories in a darker mood from Hugh Ashton, the acclaimed author of the Deed Box and Dispatch-box of Sherlock Holmes adventures. Here he explores the theme of the unknown that lurks behind our everyday world, waiting for its chance to escape and wreak havoc.
The settings range from a 16th-century Italian galley, through a 19th-century country house, to the author’s home city of Lichfield.
A 1920s James Bond takes on Lenin and the Bolsheviks, as he travels through Imperial Russia to seize control of two giant secret weapons. Attempting to stop him is Kolinski, gangster-turned-revolutionary, who will stop at nothing to achieve his ends.
Leo seems to have nothing: no wife, no girlfriend, no money (except for £3,000,000 in Japan which he shouldn't have, anyway). All of this changes when he joins Pig, Scuzz, Chaz, Lurch, Nick, Bobby, and the rest of the Killer Rabbits – and develops new skills he never knew he had.
Mentioned by Dr. Watson in his account of A Scandal in Bohemia, The Darlington Substitution tells of deceit, treachery, and murder most foul, set in the wild Border country of northern England. Holmes and Watson encounter a centuries-old legend telling of the extinction of an ancient noble family, and set against one of the most ingenious and fiendish villains ever to cross Holmes' path.
The deed box of Dr. Watson, presented to me some time ago by a friend who rescued it from the archives of a London bank, continues to produce treasures. The four stories in this collection, which I have entitled Secrets from the Deed Box of John H Watson MD, all represent some aspect of Holmes and his adventures that has previously been undiscovered.
Found at the bottom of a dispatch box once belonging to John H Watson, MD, are notes of cases which, until now, had never been read. Notes that reveal the details of The Russian Bear, The Hand of Glory and the Missing Spoons.
Three more untold adventures of Sherlock Holmes: The Case of Colonel Warburton's Madness, The Mystery of the Paradol Chamber, and The Giant Rat of Sumatra – all of which are told by the author who has been described as "the reincarnation of Sir Arthut Conan Doyle".
Three previously unknown accounts in the case files of Sherlock Holmes, discovered and transcribed by Hugh Ashton: The Odessa Business, the Case of the Missing Matchbox and The Case of the Cormorant. These stories are written in the style of the originals by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
Father Brown brings his own special brand of detective abilities to a case of murder in this new adventure. Set in the period of the originals by GKC, this tale faithfully recreates the characters and the atmosphere of the originals. M.Lowe has teamed up with H.Ashton, better known for his reconstructions of Sherlock Holmes, to produce a mystery that baffles everyone - except for Father Brown.
An alternate history, in which the American Civil War was never fought. In the 1920s, President Jefferson Davis III talks to a young German politician, and promises military aid to help the NSDAP (National Socialist German Workers' Party) to stage a coup in Germany. Brian Finch-Malloy, "a 1920s James Bond", is tasked with stopping a political axis between the Nazis and the Confederacy.
Hugh Ashton has come into possession of one of the notebooks where Watson wrote up these cases, and has presented five of them that Watson mentioned in The Golden Pince-Nez: The Red Leech, The Addleton Tragedy, The Ancient British Barrow, The Smith-Mortimer Succession, and The Boulevard Assassin.