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Reginald Hill - Author

About the Author

Reginald Hill was born in 1936 in Hartlepool in the North-East of England. At the time his father was a professional footballer playing for Hartlepool United, but Reg says he never took to the round ball game, much preferring rugby which actively encouraged the drinking of beer both before and after (and sometimes during) the game.

When he was three his family moved to Cumbria, where Reginald spent his entire childhood before going off to Oxford University and eventually becoming a teacher.

A teller of tales from his earliest years, Reg had his creative epiphany aged seven when he discovered people actually got paid for making things up. From that day on he was always certain that one day he would become a writer. He spent many years as a teacher in Yorkshire which provided the inspiration and setting for the novels featuring the Falstaffian figure of Andy Dalziel, Head of Mid Yorkshire CID. In 1970 his first book, A Clubbable Woman, was published by Collins and featured Dalziel and his more sensitive sidekick, Peter Pascoe. Hill was hailed as 'the crime novel's best hope' and, thirty years on, he has more than fulfilled that prophecy. The series of 20 books (and counting) featuring the ever-popular pair has have gone from strength to strength and been turned into a hugely successful BBC television series featuring Warren Clarke and Colin Buchanan.

Reginald Hill has written over forty books in many genres, from historical novels to science fiction. His crime writing includes the series featuring the likeable redundant lathe operator turned PI from Luton, Joe Sixsmith (Singing the Sadness, Killing the Lawyers, Blood Sympathy and Born Guilty) and several thrillers under the pseudonym, Patrick Ruell (The Only Game, Death of a Dormouse etc.)

Hill has won many awards for his books and short stories. One of the most notable was the Crime Writers' Association's prestigious Gold Dagger Award for Best Crime Novel of the Year for Bones and Silence. In 1995 he was further honoured by the Crime Writers' Association with their Cartier Diamond Dagger for his lifetime contribution to crime writing.
 

Reginald Hill currently resides in Cumbria with his wife Pat (whom he has known for over 50 years and been married to for over 40), along with their two Siamese cats and Golden Labrador. On winning the Diamond Dagger, Hill said he was delighted because it finally confirmed he had made the right career choice and now he could really get down to it. In his late sixties he still works hard but never forgets to leave time for smelling the flowers along the way. His pastimes include walking the Cumbrian hills, watching rugby, and drinking delicious Australian and New Zealand wine. Reginald Hill died in January 2012.

 

Author photograph © Tony Davis

Featured books by Reginald Hill

Other books by Reginald Hill

The Collaborators

The Collaborators

Author: Reginald Hill Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 29/04/2010

From the bestselling author of the Dalziel and Pascoe series, a superb novel of wartime passion, loyalty - and betrayal When Janine Simonian was dragged roughly from her cell to face trial as a collaborator in the days of reckoning that followed the liberation of France, she refused to conceal her shaven skull from the jeering crowds that greeted her. Before the jury of former Resistance members pledged to extract vengeance on all who had connived in Nazi rule, Janine stood proudly in court - and pleaded guilty to the charges. Why did so many French men and women collaborate with the Nazi occupation forces whilst others gave their lives in resistance? Were the motives of those who betrayed their country always selfish - and those of the Resistance always noble? The Collaborators is a superb novel of conscience and betrayal that portrays the human dilemmas brought about by the Nazi occupation of France, and asks uncomfortable questions about the priorities of personal and national loyalty in time of war.

Killing the Lawyers

Killing the Lawyers

Author: Reginald Hill Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 29/04/2010

`Killing the Lawyers...is entertaining, sly, jokey...cynical, well written, and teems with sparkly dialogue - all the virtues we expect from Hill' Marcel Berlins The Times Joe Sixsmith, Luton's premier PI, is naturally on the side of the Law... Trouble is, the Law isn't always ready to return the compliment. When Joe turns to the town's top law firm for help in a dispute, he is subjected to nothing but abuse. He walks out, vowing to have vengeance. Then someone starts killing the partners one by one, and Joe is the main suspect. At the same time as facing murder charges, Joe is trying to discover who is threatening top athlete Zak Oto. Everyone looks suspicious, from her ex-con minder, Starbright Jones, to her own family. But Joe knows he's getting close when someone starts trying to kill him...

The Long Kill

The Long Kill

Author: Reginald Hill Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 29/04/2010

`One of Britain's most consistently excellent crime novelists' The Times `[Reginald Hill] keeps one on the edge of one's wits throughout a bitterly enthralling detection thriller' Sunday Times Where better for a hitman to retire than in the Lake District, where the air is healthy and the scenery spectacular? And when Jaymith meets attractive young widow, Anya Wilson, he can't believe his luck. But Jaysmith soon discovers that settling down to the quiet life is not as easy as it seems. His old employers aren't keen to lose him, his past is always lying in wait, and when Anya introduces him to her family, Jaysmith realizes there's no way out. He's back in business, and it makes little difference that this time it's to defend, not destroy. However you wrap it up, his one accessible talent is the Long Kill.

Death of a Dormouse

Death of a Dormouse

Author: Reginald Hill Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 29/04/2010

`So far out in front that he need not bother looking over his shoulder' Sunday Telegraph The balding policeman on Trudi Adamson's doorstep brings the worst news possible: her husband Trent has been burned to death in a freak car accident. Suddenly a widow after years of marriage, Trudi soon discovers there's a lot she didn't know about her late husband. Why did he resign from his job without telling her? And where is all his money? As shock piles upon shock, Trudi is forced to re-examine her belief in Trent, and ultimately in herself. Compelled to leave the cosy nest of her old life, she is out in the open and fighting for her survival.

Singing the Sadness

Singing the Sadness

Author: Reginald Hill Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 29/04/2010

`Few writers in the genre today have Hill's gifts: formidable intelligence, quick humour, compassion and a prose style that blends elegance and grace' Sunday Times Joe Sixsmith is going west, though only as far the Llanffugiol Choral Festival in Wales. But his plans are interrupted when they happen upon a burning house with a mysterious woman trapped inside. Joe risks life and limb to rescue the woman, only to be roped in to the investigation by the police officer in charge. Suddenly surrounded by a bevy of suspicious characters, he soon realizes that this case is much more than just arson. Aided by little more than his acute instinct for truth, Joe moves forward over the space of a single weekend to uncover crimes which have been buried for years.

The Only Game

The Only Game

Author: Reginald Hill Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 29/04/2010

`One of Britain's most consistently excellent crime novelists' Marcel Berlins, The Times `[Reginald Hill] keeps one on the edge of one's wits throughout a bitterly enthralling detection thriller' Sunday Times When a four-year-old child is abducted from an Essex kindergarten, Detective Inspector Dog Cicero soon realizes that this is no routine investigation. Something about the child's mother troubles him. Maybe it's the fact that she comes from Derry, and Cicero's Northern Ireland scars go deeper than his ruined face. But he can't help feeling there's more to it than that. Soon Cicero finds the odds are stacked against him both personally and professionally - not that he will let that stop him. For he's a gambling man, and when death's the only game in town, a gambling man has got to play.

Blood Sympathy

Blood Sympathy

Author: Reginald Hill Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 29/04/2010

`Reginald Hill stands head and shoulders above any other writer of homebred crime fiction' Observer PI can mean many things, but can it really mean a balding, middle-aged lathe operator from a high rise in Luton? Joe Sixsmith thinks it can. His Aunt Mirabelle thinks you'd have to be crazy to hire him, and Joe's current clients certainly fit the bill. One's confessing to the brutal murder of his whole family; another thinks she's a witch. Next to them, the two heavies who believe Joe is hiding their illicit drugs seem almost normal. As Joe stumbles his way through bodies, gangsters and hostile police officers, he is protected by a combination of sheer luck and the help of a new lady friend. And soon it seems like he might just surpass everyone's expectations...

Born Guilty

Born Guilty

Author: Reginald Hill Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 29/04/2010

`Few writers in the genre today have Hill's gifts: formidable intelligence, quick humour, compassion and a prose style that blends elegance and grace' Donna Leon, Sunday Times Hurrying out of St Monkey's church one day, Joe Sixsmith stumbles across a boy's corpse in a cardboard box and into more trouble than he's ever known. His casebook is full to bursting: retired colonial Mrs C. demands to know how the boy got there; Gallie, the Mutant from Outer Space, urges him to find the stranger nosing into her granddad's past; while Butcher, that briefest of briefs, is hellbent on digging the dirt on a deputy head's out-of-school activities. Joe threads his way through the mean streets of Luton, fighting off cops, druggies and the matchmaking machinations of his Auntie Mirabelle. But there's little joy to be found in the truth: that kids grow up fast, and that even the luckiest ones are born guilty.

Fell of Dark

Fell of Dark

Author: Reginald Hill Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 29/04/2010

`One of Britain's most consistently excellent crime novelists' Marcel Berlins, The Times A friendship renewed; a marriage going sour; Harry Bentick heads for the Lake District not knowing if he's going in search of something or running away. Then two girls are found murdered in the high fells, and suddenly there's no doubt about it. He's running. Set in his native Cumberland, this was Reginald Hill's very first novel, a unique blend of detective story, psychological thriller and Buchanesque adventure that was to lay the groundwork for many books to come, taking him into the top ranks of British crime fiction.

There are No Ghosts in the Soviet Union

There are No Ghosts in the Soviet Union

Author: Reginald Hill Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/04/2010

A superb collection of short stories from Reginald Hill, the award-winning author of the Dalziel and Pascoe novels and `the best living male crime writer in the English-speaking world' (Independent) In suburban Luton, a private detective on his first case discovers that curiosity can kill more than just the cat... meanwhile, in wartime Boulogne, one officer will do anything to ensure that his men are ready to kill for their country... and in Stalinist Moscow, Inspector Chislenko must find out why three people have just witnessed a 50-year-old murder. From France to Russia, the 1830s to 1916 and the present day, Reginald Hill has crafted half a dozen tantalizing tales of the unexpected. He asks questions that will intrigue and gives answers that will astound. Featuring some of his best-loved characters, among them Joe Sixsmith and, of course, Dalziel and Pascoe, this is Reginald Hill at his devilish best.

Midnight Fugue

Midnight Fugue

Author: Reginald Hill Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/02/2010

The highly anticipated return of Dalziel and Pascoe, the hugely popular police duo and stars of the BBC TV series, in a new psychological thriller. Gina Wolfe is searching for her missing husband, believed dead, and hopes Superintendent Andy Dalziel can help. What neither realize is that there are others on the same trail. A tabloid hack with some awkward enquiries about an ambitious MP's father. The politician's secretary who shares his suspicions. The ruthless entrepreneur in question - and the two henchmen out to make sure the past stays in the past. Four stories, two mismatched detectives trying to figure it all out, and 24 hours in which to do it: Dalziel and Pascoe are about to learn the hard way exactly how much difference a day makes...

Midnight Fugue

Midnight Fugue

Author: Reginald Hill Format: CD-Audio Release Date: 01/12/2009

This is the highly anticipated return of Dalziel and Pascoe in a new psychological thriller. It starts with a phone call to Superintendent Dalziel from an old friend asking for help. But where it ends is a very different story. Gina Wolfe has come to Mid-Yorkshire in search of her missing husband, believed dead. Her fiance, Commander Mick Purdy of the Met, thinks Dalziel should be able to take care of the job. What none of them realize is how events set in motion decades ago will come to a violent head on this otherwise ordinary summer's day...This recording is unabridged. Typically abridged audiobooks are not more than 60 per cent of the author's work and as low as 30 per cent with characters and plotlines removed.

A Cure for All Diseases

A Cure for All Diseases

Author: Reginald Hill Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 25/06/2009

The new psychological thriller featuring Dalziel and Pascoe, the hugely popular detective duo and stars of the long-running BBC TV series, following on from the bestselling Death of Dalziel He may have been in a coma but it would take an act of God to put Superintendent 'Fat' Andy Dalziel down for good. In the meantime, He'll settle for a few weeks' bed-rest. Sandytown, a pleasant seaside resort devoted to healing, seems just the ticket. And when a fellow newcomer appears in the shapely form of psychologist Charlotte Heywood, Dalziel develops an unexpected passion for alternative therapy. But Sandytown's warring landowners have grandiose plans for the resort. One of them has to go and when one of them does, in spectacularly gruesome fashion, DCI Peter Pascoe is called in to investigate - with Dalziel and Charlotte providing unwelcome support. And Pascoe soon finds dark forces at work in a place where holistic remedies are no match for the oldest cure of all...

A Killing Kindness A Dalziel and Pascoe Novel

A Killing Kindness A Dalziel and Pascoe Novel

Author: Reginald Hill Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 25/06/2009

`Altogether an enjoyable performance, one of Mr Hill's best' Financial Times When Mary Dinwoodie is found choked in a ditch following a night out with her boyfriend, a mysterious caller phones the local paper with a quotation from Hamlet. The career of the Yorkshire Choker is underway. If Superintendent Dalziel is unimpressed by the literary phone calls, he is downright angry when Sergeant Wield calls in a clairvoyant. Linguists, psychiatrists, mediums - it's all a load of nonsense as far as he is concerned, designed to make a fool of him. And meanwhile the Choker strikes again - and again...

On Beulah Height

On Beulah Height

Author: Reginald Hill Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 25/06/2009

`Hill is an instinctive and complete novelist who is blessed with a spontaneous storytelling gift' Frances Fyfield, Mail on Sunday Fifteen years ago they moved everyone out of Dendale. They needed a new reservoir and an old community seemed a cheap price to pay. But four inhabitants of the valley could not be moved, for nobody knew where they were: three little girls who had gone missing, and the prime suspect in their disappearance, Benny Lightfoot. This was Andy Dalziel's worst case and now he looks set to relive it. Another child goes missing in the next valley, and old fears arise as someone sprays the deadly message on Danby bridge: BENNY'S BACK!

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