Can you be healthy and happy?

Most people agree that health is the most important thing in life. Those who disagree generally put it in the top three things. So why would I question it?

Of course, there are plenty of people with long term illnesses and disabilities who manage to lead happy lives. How they do it could be the subject of another series of articles. Let’s suppose for a start that they concentrate on all the other things that make for happiness, some of which I have already written about. That does not disprove the statement that, overall, staying healthy helps you to be happy.

The trouble is that nowadays there is so much written and spoken about health, and there seems little consensus on what makes for a healthy lifestyle. So many diets and exercise regimes are recommended, only to be replaced by the next ‘breakthrough’ (or fad if you like).

  • Worrying about your health can make you unhappy, even when you are well.
  • Obsessing about your diet or exercise can lead to a lot of anxiety and keep you from enjoying the health you do have, even if it could be better.

The advice that makes sense, taken from a number of sources, is that to be happy you should take care of your health without making it a cause of anxiety. Here are a few simple tips that almost everyone seems to agree on.

  • Avoid taking recreational drugs.
  • Do take any medicines prescribed by your doctor.
  • Don’t smoke.
  • Drink alcohol in moderation.
  • Take regular exercise of some kind.
  • Avoid faddy or extreme diets, unless advised by your doctor.
  • Keep to a sensible weight: overeating is bad, regardless of the make-up of the diet.
  • Get enough sleep, whether you are an early or late person.

In case you are in doubt, I am addressing people who are relatively well-off, by global standards. In some places, overeating is not an issue: starvation and malnutrition are. For many people, getting enough to eat would make them happy.

But for you and me, it’s about being sensible, so as to be healthy and be happy.

All About ‘Accounting for Murder’

Here is a press release for Accounting for Murder, Double Entry

Accounting for Murder: Double Entry – Thrilling New Detective Novel Proves Hidden Investments Can Kill More than A Tax Bill


Meticulously crafted by John Harvey Murray, ‘Accounting for Murder: Double Entry’ is an intense and intricate murder mystery that takes readers across Wales, as one woman’s plan for divorce ends in the death of her affluent husband. The suspect could be any number of his assistants, financial advisors and even his new mistress. What ensues is thrilling to say the very least, and bold proof that money simply can’t buy happiness – or even a heartbeat.

While murder mysteries and detective novels have long been a staple of the literary world, both readers and critics are currently crying out for wholly-unique new narratives that do more than succumb to the same-old recycled concepts.

Thankfully, John Harvey Murray is stepping up to the plate with gusto, unveiling a new detective masterpiece that readers won’t be forgetting any time soon. Introducing ‘Accounting for Murder: Double Entry’.




When former athlete Patty Rogers decides to divorce her unfaithful husband, Ray, she calls on accountant, Frank Hill, to find Ray’s conveniently missing investments. The trail leads from Cardiff to the financial heart of the City of London and to Aberystwyth, where the mystery turns into a murder.

 The police regard Patty as their one and only suspect. Frank and his teenage daughter Jane try to find the real killer, unaware of the dangers they are facing from corrupt accountants, racist thugs, a dog-fighting gang, uncooperative policemen and Ray’s mistress, a pop star with many faces and a rock-solid alibi. To see justice done they will need all Frank’s investigative skills and Jane’s youthful energy. And more.

 “The great thing about Patty, Ray and the host of other characters is their sheer depth,” explains the author. “This isn’t a detective novel where you’ll be guessing the killer from the second chapter. It’s deliberately unlike anything else on the market, gives nothing away and will embroil every reader in something they won’t be able to stop fidgeting about until they’ve finished the book!”

Continuing, “It’s also rare to see Wales host a story like this and, for the country’s beauty and tranquilities, I am taking it upon myself to present the raw realities of the nation in the 21st-century. It’s a cosmopolitan place that is something of a far cry from the myths and folklore association with traditional Welsh culture. I have a deep love and passion for Wales, and know the nation intimately. It’s certainly an unusual setting for an unusual story.”

With the volume’s demand expected to be high, interested readers are urged to secure their copies as soon as possible.

Available on  Createspace at GBP 6.99 

Also on Kindle: ASIN: B06ZYNRD8F USD 2.99 

About the Author:

After studying Economics and Accountancy at Bristol University, John worked in local government finance, investigating everything from petty fraud to massive overspends, and all kinds of insurance claims. He has worked in North, Mid and South Wales, and the North West of England. He is now a self-employed risk management consultant based in Warrington.

He has written several books. His writing reflects his Christian faith, as well as his love of Wales, of horses and of other animals.


! Accounting for Murder is Published

Accounting for Murder: Double Entry is now available from Createspace at £6.99

go to

It is also available on Kindle for 2.38


go to

Here’s a short summary.

When former athlete Patty Rogers decides to divorce her unfaithful husband, Ray, she calls on accountant, Frank Hill, to find Ray’s conveniently missing investments. The trail leads from Cardiff to the financial heart of the City of London and to Aberystwyth, where the mystery turns into a murder.

What do you make of this well-known mystery?

I love mysteries: reading or writing them. I have often pondered some historic mysteries. I have recently written about one famous one, which is remembered at this time of year. See which explanation you believe and what do you doubt? Whatever you think, I expect it has nothing to do with chocolate eggs.


Why is there a donkey in the Palm Sunday story?

The Sunday before Easter is known as Palm Sunday. It is when Christians remember when Jesus rode a donkey into Jerusalem, at the start of the week which was to end in his death. It is called Palm Sunday because people cut palm branches and waved them. Some threw them on the ground in front of the donkey. I have written previously about the elements of Risk Management in this story.

Is there a lesson for Risk Management in the Easter story?

But what has the donkey got to do with it?

You may wonder why so much emphasis on the donkey. Why did it matter how he entered the city?

People often say it was about identifying with the poor. Well, I agree that it is likely that donkeys were cheaper than horses in those days. But why not walk, to identify with people who could not afford either? Some rich people rode donkeys anyway, as not everyone was a good horseman and many would have found donkeys easier to ride. It is worth noting that donkeys are often bigger in the Middle East than the ones you see on Blackpool beach, so a man can ride one fairly comfortably.

Some ponies are smaller than donkeys. Here is a small friend of mine. Bea, a miniature Shetland pony.


Are donkeys just ‘poor’ horses?

Think of all the things you can use either a horse or a donkey for, even if the one is usually better than the other.

  • Getting from A to B.
  • Carrying a pack.
  • Pulling a cart.
  • Ploughing.

Is there anything horses are used for but not donkeys? I can think of only one thing.


I have never heard of any cavalry regiment riding donkeys.

In Jesus’ day, if you saw a man riding a donkey, even if he was in armour, you could be pretty sure he was just riding around, not about to go into battle. He was not an immediate threat.

Jesus was not entering that city as a conqueror. Not in the military sense. He said his kingdom was not of this world. Yet he was to be more influential in the long run than any earthly king. The donkey was a sign.

  • A disappointment to some.
  • Relief to others.
  • Probably confusion to still others.

He was challenging our ideas of power, of victory and of defeat.  What’s yours?

What is the setting for Accounting for Murder: Double Entry?

My detective novel, Accounting for Murder: Double Entry, which will be published very soon, is set in Cardiff.  The hero, Frank, is a Lancastrian who lives in Llandaff, between the Cathedral and the City.  His investigation takes him to Aberystwyth and London, several times, but  Cardiff, where I lived and worked for many years, is the real centre of the story.  Although my hero is an Englishman, he knows he belongs in that city, and its personality influences him as it does the book.

As this story is set in the present, forget mythical images of Wales: sheep and coalmines.  Cardiff is a modern, cosmopolitan City.  There are black and Asian characters.  The hero’s brother-in-law is of Italian origins.  Modern technology plays its part in their lives, just as it does in the story.  Frank’s teenage children are always willing to advise him on social media and anything else he has not kept up-to-date with.  And things he has.

Cardiff has beautiful old buildings and also some great modern developments, such as the Millennium Stadium, now officially known as the Principality Stadium, and the Marina.

Here is a picture of Llandaff Cathedral, from a watercolour by an old friend of mine, the late George Dolman.  If you want to see the many aspects of  Cardiff’s modern face, go and visit it.  You may be surprised.