Theft has been on my mind. If I wanted a character to steal something valuable, what would it be? A mobile phone, an iPlayer, a Kindle, an iPad, a laptop, a car, a yacht, jewellery, someone’s credit card, cash? There’s a lot of valuable stuff out there. Quite a choice. But what if I wanted my character to steal something really really valuable? I might think of an important painting. But that sort of thing is closely guarded and hard to sell afterwards without specialist knowledge of the black market in artwork.
Gold. That’s expensive. But it’s also held in secure places and a decent quantity is very heavy. Difficult to walk away with a good pile. No. I’d want something very expensive but light and small. So, weight-for-weight, what’s the most valuable human-made object on the planet? I’ll get my character to nick that. Well, it’s a postage stamp. To be precise, it’s the 1855 Swedish 3 skilling stamp in yellow and it last sold for £1.42 million. Weighs almost nothing, costs a lot.
Wait. I used that theme in an old crime story called ‘Flying Upside Down’. Sadly, the book’s almost as hard to find as a yellow 1855 Swedish 3 skilling stamp. New copies from me (via www.malcolmrose.co.uk). Second-hand copies from the usual online sources.