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Simon Kernick - Author

About the Author

Simon Kernick was our Guest Editor in February 2010 - click here - to see the books that inspired his writing.

Simon Kernick is one of Britain's most exciting new thriller writers. He arrived on the scene with his highly acclaimed debut novel The Business of Dying, and his big breakthrough came with his novel Relentless which became the bestselling thriller of 2007. Simon's research is what makes his thrillers so authentic. He talks both on and off the record to members of Special Branch, the Anti-Terrorist Branch and the Serious and Organised Crime Agency, so he gets to hear first hand what actually happens in the dark and murky underbelly of UK crime.

Below is a Q&A with this author.

1. Does your writing ever scare you?
Maybe not my writing, but my vivid imagination does.

2. Are you a disciplined writer?
Yes, I think so. I tend to write five days a week and roughly between the hours of 9 and 5 (and longer if I’m behind). I don’t think you can wait for inspiration to take hold otherwise you could be waiting a hell of a long time! In the end, you have to treat it like a job, albeit one that’s great fun.

3. Who is your most recognised character? What/who was the inspiration behind that character?
I have two central characters in my books. One is Dennis Milne, my renegade cop from The Business of Dying and its two sequels, and the other is Tina Boyd. Dennis was an amalgamation of a few cops I knew at the time (although none of them were killers as far as I know!), and Tina was a minor character from the early books who just became more and more central to my plots. I’m not quite sure how that happened. It just did.

4. Where do you write?
Usually in a bedroom upstairs in my house facing out on the road and the trees beyond. It’s a relaxing view.

5. Which crime fiction related book, TV programme or film have had the most impact on you or your writing?
Get Carter (originally Jack’s Return Home) by Ted Lewis has always been a huge inspiration. It’s one of the best thrillers I’ve ever read. A real noir classic.
 
6. What is your favourite scene or line from any crime fiction book?
‘The right apartment was hard to find so they murdered the old lady.’ It’s the first line of ‘Don’t Say a Word’ by Andrew Klavan, a fantastic thriller that I’ve re-read twice, and that line’s been imprinted on my memory ever since I first picked up the book in a second hand bookshop in Tenerife in 1993.

7. Which non-fictional killer frightens you the most?
They all do, to a certain extent. It takes a certain darkness in the soul to be able to kill another human being.

8. What tip would you give any budding writers?
Be patient, don’t spend too much time worrying about editing until you reach the end of your story (the most important thing is always to get words down on a page), and develop a thick skin. You will face many rejections in your struggle to get published, but if you’re determined enough, and your work is good enough, you’ll get there in the end.

9. E-book or paper?
Still paper. I’m a bit of Luddite.

10. If you were a fictional character, how would you write your own death?
In a blaze of glory, gunning down the bad guys in a ferocious firefight before being caught from behind by a lucky shot!

11. …and what would your final meal be?
If I had time between all the shooting, I’d dine on a dozen oysters followed by a rib eye steak, lobster and French fries, ending with my Mum’s trifle. I think that lot would probably finish me off anyway…

Author photo © Johnny Ring

Featured books by Simon Kernick

The Hanged Man

The Hanged Man

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Paperback Release Date: 05/04/2018

A house deep in the countryside where the remains of seven unidentified women have just been discovered. A cop ready to risk everything in the hunt for their killers. A man who has seen the murders and is now on the run in fear of his life. So begins the race to track down this witness before the killers do. For Ray Mason and PI Tina Boyd, the road ahead is a dangerous one, with bodies and betrayal at every turn... Find out what readers are saying: 'an enthralling, twisted and absolutely unputdownable read' - Noelle on Goodreads, 5 stars 'thrilling, gripping, shocking and a complete page turner. I literally couldn't put it down' - Claire on Goodreads, 5 stars 'I had to finish the book and did so in the early hours. Pulse-racing, heart-stopping action led to a nail-biting finish. Wow!' - Mike on Goodreads, 5 stars 'Fast paced and gripping from the start - absolutely loved it' - Nerys on Goodreads, 5 stars 'My pulse rate has finally returned to normal. What a fantastic ending to an excellent book' - Jen on Goodreads, 5 stars

ebook of the month
The Final Minute

The Final Minute

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/01/2015

Featuring Simon Kernick's maverick detective, Tina Boyd, this is the gripping new race-against-time thriller by the best-selling author of Relentless, The Last 10 Seconds and Stay Alive. 'It's night, and I'm in a strange house. The lights are on, and I'm standing outside a half-open door. Feeling a terrible sense of forboding, I walk slowly inside. And then I see her. A woman lying sprawled across a huge double bed. She's dead. There's blood everywhere. And the most terrifying thing of all is that I think her killer might be me...' A traumatic car-crash. A man with no memory, haunted by nightmares. When the past comes calling in the most terrifying way imaginable, Matt Barron is forced to turn to the one person who can help. Ex Met cop, turned private detective, Tina Boyd. Soon they are both on the run...

ebook of the month
Stay Alive

Stay Alive

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Paperback Release Date: 19/06/2014

The gripping new race-against-time thriller by the best-selling author of Relentless, The Last 10 Seconds, Siege and Ultimatum. One Witness - You're on a trip with your family, miles from anywhere. A shot rings out - and your whole life changes in an instant. One Secret - A woman is racing towards you, chased by three gunmen. Although you don't know it, she harbours a deadly secret. She's in terrible danger. And now you are too. No Escape - You're running, terrified, desperate to find safety. You know that the men hunting you have killed before. And if they catch you, you'll be next . Brilliant . (Sunday Mirror). Hang on tight! (Harlen Coben).

ebook of the month
Stay Alive

Stay Alive

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Hardback Release Date: 30/01/2014

The gripping new race-against-time thriller by the best-selling author of Relentless, The Last 10 Seconds, Siege and Ultimatum. One Witness - You're on a trip with your family, miles from anywhere. A shot rings out - and your whole life changes in an instant. One Secret - A woman is racing towards you, chased by three gunmen. Although you don't know it, she harbours a deadly secret. She's in terrible danger. And now you are too. No Escape - You're running, terrified, desperate to find safety. You know that the men hunting you have killed before. And if they catch you, you'll be next . Brilliant . (Sunday Mirror). Hang on tight! (Harlen Coben).

ebook of the month
Ultimatum

Ultimatum

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Paperback Release Date: 06/06/2013

THE THREAT 8am: an explosion blasts through a cafe in Central London. THE ULTIMATUM Minutes later, a call from an unknown terror group warns that a far greater attack will be launched in 12 hours' time. THE PRISONER William Garrett, AKA Fox, is awaiting trial for mass murder. He claims he can name the bombers. But only at a price. THE CLOCK IS TICKING It's a terrifying race against time for DI Mike Bolt and DC Tina Boyd as they chase their targets across the city in a desperate bid to stop a major atrocity - before it's too late ...

ebook of the month
Wrong Time Wrong Place Quick Reads 2013

Wrong Time Wrong Place Quick Reads 2013

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/02/2013

You are hiking in the Scottish highlands with three friends when you come across a girl. She is half-naked, has been badly beaten, and she can't speak English. She is clearly running away from someone. Do you stop to help her? Even if it means putting your friends' lives - and your own - in terrible danger?

ebook of the month

Other books by Simon Kernick

We Can See You

We Can See You

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 30/05/2019

Witty, scary, fast-moving and outrageous - MARCEL BERLIN, THE TIMES Simon Kernick is one of the most reliable purveyors of the edge-of-your-seat thriller... a more powerful adrenaline rush than an EpiPen - JAKE KERRIDGE, SUNDAY EXPRESS WE HAVE YOUR DAUGHTER. WE KNOW YOUR SECRETS. WE CAN SEE YOU. The new high-octane thriller from Sunday Times bestselling author Simon Kernick ________________________ You have it all. Success, a beautiful home, a happy family. Until, in a heartbeat, it's gone. We've kidnapped your daughter, and we know everything about you. Including the dark secrets from your past you thought were forgotten. We tell you not to contact the police - and that we'll know if you do. Because we can see you. And now you know this is no ordinary abduction. It's worse. Within hours you're on the run, with only one thought in your head: That you will stop at nothing to get your daughter back. Even murder... ________________________ Simon Kernick is an absolute master of the adrenaline-fuelled ride - PETER JAMES An emotionally punchy domestic noir blended with the pace and action of a high-octane thriller, WE CAN SEE YOU will keep you breathlessly on the edge of your seat, wondering which character you can trust, if any at all, until the final brilliant twist! A #WTFthatending indeed! - SARAH PINBOROUGH, author of BEHIND HER EYES and CROSS HER HEART A pacy thriller, with a body count that rises along with the tension levels - SUNDAY MIRROR Simon Kernick manages to ring fresh changes (and revelations) at every point... He remains one of the most consistently suspenseful and ingenious writers in the field - CRIME TIME Thriller-meister Simon Kernick's standalone books are always worth picking up - and his latest is no exception - SUNDAY SPORT

We Can See You

We Can See You

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 30/05/2019

________________________ Witty, scary, fast-moving and outrageous - MARCEL BERLIN, THE TIMES Simon Kernick is one of the most reliable purveyors of the edge-of-your-seat thriller... a more powerful adrenaline rush than an EpiPen - JAKE KERRIDGE, SUNDAY EXPRESS WE HAVE YOUR DAUGHTER. WE KNOW YOUR SECRETS. WE CAN SEE YOU. The new high-octane thriller from Sunday Times bestselling author Simon Kernick ________________________ You have it all. Success, a beautiful home, a happy family. Until, in a heartbeat, it's gone. We've kidnapped your daughter, and we know everything about you. Including the dark secrets from your past you thought were forgotten. We tell you not to contact the police - and that we'll know if you do. Because we can see you. And now you know this is no ordinary abduction. It's worse. Within hours you're on the run, with only one thought in your head: That you will stop at nothing to get your daughter back. Even murder... ________________________ Simon Kernick is an absolute master of the adrenaline-fuelled ride - PETER JAMES An emotionally punchy domestic noir blended with the pace and action of a high-octane thriller, WE CAN SEE YOU will keep you breathlessly on the edge of your seat, wondering which character you can trust, if any at all, until the final brilliant twist! A #WTFthatending indeed! - SARAH PINBOROUGH, author of BEHIND HER EYES and CROSS HER HEART A pacy thriller, with a body count that rises along with the tension levels - SUNDAY MIRROR Simon Kernick manages to ring fresh changes (and revelations) at every point... He remains one of the most consistently suspenseful and ingenious writers in the field - BARRY FORSHAW, FINANCIAL TIMES Thriller-meister Simon Kernick's standalone books are always worth picking up - and his latest is no exception - SUNDAY SPORT

Dead Man's Gift and Other Stories

Dead Man's Gift and Other Stories

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 27/12/2018

One book. Five thrillers. No holds barred. including: DEAD MAN'S GIFT MP Tim Horton arrives home to find his seven-year-old son has been abducted - and the nanny brutally murdered. The kidnapping gang's demands are simple: Tim must sacrifice his own life to save his son's. A dead man's gift... ONE BY ONE Six former school-friends have been reunited on a remote island. Separated since a fateful night twenty-one years ago, when their friend Rachel was killed, they're afraid for their lives - because the man arrested for Rachel's murder has been released. They think he's coming for them. They're almost right. Plus three more thrillers guaranteed to keep you gripped to the page. Can you withstand five full-strength doses of Simon Kernick?

We Can See You

We Can See You

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 29/11/2018

Witty, scary, fast-moving and outrageous - MARCEL BERLIN, THE TIMES Simon Kernick is one of the most reliable purveyors of the edge-of-your-seat thriller... a more powerful adrenaline rush than an EpiPen - JAKE KERRIDGE, SUNDAY EXPRESS WE HAVE YOUR DAUGHTER. WE KNOW YOUR SECRETS. WE CAN SEE YOU. The new high-octane thriller from Sunday Times bestselling author Simon Kernick ________________________ You have it all. Success, a beautiful home, a happy family. Until, in a heartbeat, it's gone. We've kidnapped your daughter, and we know everything about you. Including the dark secrets from your past you thought were forgotten. We tell you not to contact the police - and that we'll know if you do. Because we can see you. And now you know this is no ordinary abduction. It's worse. Within hours you're on the run, with only one thought in your head: That you will stop at nothing to get your daughter back. Even murder... ________________________ Simon Kernick is an absolute master of the adrenaline-fuelled ride - PETER JAMES An emotionally punchy domestic noir blended with the pace and action of a high-octane thriller, WE CAN SEE YOU will keep you breathlessly on the edge of your seat, wondering which character you can trust, if any at all, until the final brilliant twist! A #WTFthatending indeed! - SARAH PINBOROUGH, author of BEHIND HER EYES and CROSS HER HEART A pacy thriller, with a body count that rises along with the tension levels - SUNDAY MIRROR Simon Kernick manages to ring fresh changes (and revelations) at every point... He remains one of the most consistently suspenseful and ingenious writers in the field - CRIME TIME Thriller-meister Simon Kernick's standalone books are always worth picking up - and his latest is no exception - SUNDAY SPORT

We Can See You

We Can See You

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/11/2018

________________________ Witty, scary, fast-moving and outrageous - MARCEL BERLIN, THE TIMES Simon Kernick is one of the most reliable purveyors of the edge-of-your-seat thriller... a more powerful adrenaline rush than an EpiPen - JAKE KERRIDGE, SUNDAY EXPRESS WE HAVE YOUR DAUGHTER. WE KNOW YOUR SECRETS. WE CAN SEE YOU. The new high-octane thriller from Sunday Times bestselling author Simon Kernick ________________________ You have it all. Success, a beautiful home, a happy family. Until, in a heartbeat, it's gone. We've kidnapped your daughter, and we know everything about you. Including the dark secrets from your past you thought were forgotten. We tell you not to contact the police - and that we'll know if you do. Because we can see you. And now you know this is no ordinary abduction. It's worse. Within hours you're on the run, with only one thought in your head: That you will stop at nothing to get your daughter back. Even murder... ________________________ Simon Kernick is an absolute master of the adrenaline-fuelled ride - PETER JAMES An emotionally punchy domestic noir blended with the pace and action of a high-octane thriller, WE CAN SEE YOU will keep you breathlessly on the edge of your seat, wondering which character you can trust, if any at all, until the final brilliant twist! A #WTFthatending indeed! - SARAH PINBOROUGH, author of BEHIND HER EYES and CROSS HER HEART A pacy thriller, with a body count that rises along with the tension levels - SUNDAY MIRROR Simon Kernick manages to ring fresh changes (and revelations) at every point... He remains one of the most consistently suspenseful and ingenious writers in the field - BARRY FORSHAW, FINANCIAL TIMES Thriller-meister Simon Kernick's standalone books are always worth picking up - and his latest is no exception - SUNDAY SPORT

Dead Man's Gift and Other Stories

Dead Man's Gift and Other Stories

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 26/07/2018

DEAD MAN'S GIFT MP Tim Horton arrives home to find his seven year old son has been abducted by a ruthless gang of kidnappers. All they have left behind is the brutally murdered body of the Horton's nanny. The gang's demands are simple: Tim must sacrifice his own life in order to save his son's. It's the ultimate dead man's gift ... ONE BY ONE Six former school-friends have been brought together on a remote island. They haven't all been in contact since a fateful night twenty-one years ago, when their friend Rachel was found dead. The man arrested for her murder has now been acquitted, and the seven friends fear for their own lives. But are they hiding from the right person? Or have they fallen into a deadly trap? Plus three more thrillers guaranteed to keep you gripped to the page

Dead Man's Gift and Other Stories

Dead Man's Gift and Other Stories

Author: Simon Kernick Format: eBook Release Date: 26/07/2018

Random House presents the audiobook edition of Dead Man's Gift and Other Stories by Simon Kernick, read by Paul Thornley and Bea Holland.DEAD MAN'S GIFTMP Tim Horton arrives home to find his seven year old son has been abducted by a ruthless gang of kidnappers. All they have left behind is the brutally murdered body of the Horton's nanny. The gang's demands are simple: Tim must sacrifice his own life in order to save his son's.It's the ultimate dead man's gift ...ONE BY ONESix former school-friends have been brought together on a remote island.They haven't all been in contact since a fateful night twenty-one years ago, when their friend Rachel was found dead. The man arrested for her murder has now been acquitted, and the seven friends fear for their own lives.But are they hiding from the right person? Or have they fallen into a deadly trap?Plus three more thrillers guaranteed to keep you gripped

The Hanged Man

The Hanged Man

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Paperback Release Date: 05/04/2018

A house deep in the countryside where the remains of seven unidentified women have just been discovered. A cop ready to risk everything in the hunt for their killers. A man who has seen the murders and is now on the run in fear of his life. So begins the race to track down this witness before the killers do. For Ray Mason and PI Tina Boyd, the road ahead is a dangerous one, with bodies and betrayal at every turn... Find out what readers are saying: 'an enthralling, twisted and absolutely unputdownable read' - Noelle on Goodreads, 5 stars 'thrilling, gripping, shocking and a complete page turner. I literally couldn't put it down' - Claire on Goodreads, 5 stars 'I had to finish the book and did so in the early hours. Pulse-racing, heart-stopping action led to a nail-biting finish. Wow!' - Mike on Goodreads, 5 stars 'Fast paced and gripping from the start - absolutely loved it' - Nerys on Goodreads, 5 stars 'My pulse rate has finally returned to normal. What a fantastic ending to an excellent book' - Jen on Goodreads, 5 stars

ebook of the month
The Hanged Man

The Hanged Man

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 16/11/2017

A house deep in the countryside where the remains of seven unidentified women have just been discovered. A cop ready to risk everything in the hunt for their killers. A man who has seen the murders and is now on the run in fear of his life. So begins the race to track down this witness before the killers do. For Ray Mason and PI Tina Boyd, the road ahead is a dangerous one, with bodies and betrayal at every turn...

Hanged Man

Hanged Man

Author: Simon Kernick Format: eBook Release Date: 16/11/2017

Random House presents the audiobook edition of The Hanged Man by Simon Kernick, read by Paul Thornley.From the Sunday Times bestselling author, Simon Kernick, comes the thrilling second instalment in The Bone Field series. Featuring DI Ray Mason and PI Tina Boyd.A house deep in the countryside where the remains of seven unidentified women have just been discovered.A cop ready to risk everything in the hunt for their killers.A man who has seen the murders and is now on the run in fear of his life.So begins the race to track down this witness before the killers do.For Ray Mason and PI Tina Boyd, the road ahead is a dangerous one, with bodies and betrayal at every turn...

The Bone Field

The Bone Field

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/04/2017

The totally gripping and irresistible new thriller from the best-selling author of Stay Alive, The Final Minute and The Witness. When the bones of a 21-year old woman who went missing without trace in Thailand in 1990, are discovered in the grounds of an old Catholic school in Buckinghamshire, an enduring mystery takes on a whole new twist. Her boyfriend at the time, and the man who reported her missing, Henry Forbes, now a middle-aged university lecturer, comes forward with his lawyer and tells DI Ray Mason of the Met's Homicide Command that he knows what happened to Kitty, and who killed her. So begins a hunt for the truth that will focus on a ruthless crime gang, a rich, dysfunctional family with a terrible past, and a highly ambitious man so cruel and ruthless that he must be brought down at any cost...

Bone Field

Bone Field

Author: Simon Kernick Format: eBook Release Date: 12/01/2017

'Hang on tight!' - Harlan CobenA NEW TWIST TO A DECADES OLD MYSTERY1990A young woman goes missing while backpacking in Thailand.She is never seen again.2016Her bones are discovered 6000 miles away in an English field and, within hours, the boyfriend who reported her disappearance all those years ago is dead.So begins a hunt to solve her murder that will take DI Ray Mason and PI Tina Boyd into a dark and terrifying world of corruption and deadly secrets, where murder is commonplace, and nothing and nobody is safe...Praise for The Bone Field'Hang on tight!' Harlan Coben'breathless' - Sunday Times'An addictive thriller full of gritty details and fast frenetic action.' - Sunday Mirror 'High Energy, action packed reading that'll keep your heart rate high and your attention glued to the pages ... To be able to maintain such a high level of action and suspense is a real skill and Simon Kernick is a master of the thriller.' - Damp Pebbles'A series? By Simon Kernick? Yes please! [A] powerful, fast moving and intoxicating tale. - Love Reading'The Bone Field is one of those intriguing novels that surreptitiously gets under your skin.' - Jaffa Reads Too'An adrenaline rush of a read' - My Chestnut Reading Tree[A] heart pounding, blood pressure raising thriller ... Gird your loins for a fast paced read, full of thrills, spills and unrelenting action - Raven Crime Reads9/10. When it comes to a white knuckle action ride nobody does it better - Peterborough TelegraphJudging by the pace, the twists and the turns that energise The Bone Field, it could be a series well worth following - Shots eZineThe only thing that bothers me about that is the long wait until the next book in The Bone Field - Off-The-Shelf Books

Flytrap

Flytrap

Author: Simon Kernick Format: eBook Release Date: 01/12/2016

THE EXCLUSIVE NEW SHORT STORY YOU WON'T BE ABLE TO STOP READINGAlso includes a sneak preview of Simon Kernick's blistering new thriller, The Bone Field.HimHe has an addiction that he cannot quench. His solitary life sailing the Caribbean is the only way he can survive. That is, until, he meets HerA widow with nothing left to lose, she finds herself on his sleek forty-foot yacht. He s handsome and charming; exactly what she s been looking for.But the night doesn t go exactly as they had planned, and only one of them will get out alive.

The Witness

The Witness

Author: Simon Kernick Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/04/2016

The gripping new race-against-time thriller by the best-selling author of Relentless, The Last 10 Seconds and The Final Minute. `I had a simple choice. Stay here, and almost certainly be discovered. Or get up and run.' THE WITNESS When Jane Kinnear sees her lover being murdered, she suddenly finds herself in danger. Taken to an anonymous police safe-house, it soon becomes clear that her lover was an MI5 informant with important information about an imminent terrorist attack. THE DETECTIVE DI Ray Mason of Counter Terrorism Command is a man with a controversial past, but his effectiveness at getting results means that he's now been given the task of preventing the attack from taking place. But can he be trusted, and does he know more about the attack than he's letting on? THE KILLER In the safe-house, Jane is trying to piece together a description of her lover's killer. But what she doesn't know is that the killer has already found out who she is, and where she is hiding. And now he's coming for her ...