The Crime Writers' Association have named June National Crime Reading Month and, in partnership with national charity The Reading Agency, are encouraging everyone to #PickUpAPageTurner and celebrate the UK's most popular genre. This year the focus of National Crime Reading Month is to showcase the enormous breadth of the genre and over the course of the month we've been sharing our long list of collections to appeal to crime readers of every type.  

The crime genre is a fascinating one, and whether fiction or non-fiction, it regularly sits on the best-seller lists. Memoirs and biographies of those who have either been involved in the criminal world or fighting against crime, really do call out to people.

From murder podcasts and crime documentaries, to TV adaptations of true crimes like the recent Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story, many of us obsess over and thoroughly enjoy the stories behind real crimes. True crime books are highly researched non-fiction reads that detail the people and events surrounding serial killings, kidnappings, and other heinous crimes. They consume us. They horrify us. But there's something compelling about the stories.

Is there such a thing as bad and good or just unfortunate decisions or sad upbringings?

Do we recognise that we all have the potential to choose an unfortunate path, make a mistake, and wonder what we would do in certain circumstances?

Do we ponder the true meaning of evil, and wonder at the human capacity to cause harm and hurt?

In this collection we have a range of memoirs and biographies with a crime theme. From police officers to forensic experts to lawyers, from career criminal to a child who was groomed for a life of crime through to a child with an upbringing that leads to tragedy, these books really do pack a punch.

In Koresh, you will find a rare insight into the true story of David Koresh, the Davidians, and the tragedy at Waco, Texas during the infamous 1993 siege.

Born Killers? is a fascinating LoveReading Star Book and is an absolute must for anyone interested in police and forensic psychology. Following that theme, Crossing the Line by John Sutherland is a fascinating and inspiring invitation to walk with a retired, highly respected senior police officer, and witness the scenes behind the blue and white cordon tape. 

In Black and White is Alexandra Wilson's account of what she has witnessed as a young mixed-race barrister. Alexandra's story is equally riveting and inspirational and you can also hear Alexandra talk more about the book on our LoveReading Litfest event. More recently published Jess McDonald's No Comment explores the reality of being a direct-entry detective in the Met with an incisive, eye-opening and often shocking account.

If the Ripper is your thing, we have to recommend this compelling and disturbing read. It's easy to forget that I'm the Yorkshire Ripper is fact not fiction, with its plot twists, red herrings, missed clues and cliffhangers. 

Not forgetting the victims of these heinous crimes, The Five by Hallie Rubenhold focuses the lens not on the notorious Jack the Ripper but on the lives of the canonical five victims: Mary-Anne Nichols, Annie Chapman, Elizabeth Stride, Catherine Eddowes and Mary Jane Kelly. The deeply emotive The Boy With A Pound In His Pocket tells Yousef Makki's story and his sister Jade's life-changing fight for justice. Yousef was a young scholarship pupil at Manchester Grammar school who died from a single stab wound to the chest inflicted by one of his friends, who was found not guilty of murder or manslaughter. 

Emotionally powerful, provocative, and thought-provoking, these books will stay with you for some time. So, whether you're picking up one of these page turners for National Crime Reading Month, or you're an all seasons' true crime reader, keep scrolling to browse our collection of recommendations. One of your favourites not on the list? Comment and let us know!