Enter the criminal underworld and solve a complex case all from the comfort of your favourite reading nook. Have a look at our Crime/Mystery selection to get your hands on the latest and greatest case and get mystery solving! You might also be interested in our Thriller and Suspense categories.
Just days before her sister plunged to her death, Jules ignored her call. Now Nel is dead. They say she jumped. And Jules must return to her sister's house to care for her daughter, and to face the mystery of Nel's death. But Jules is afraid. Of her long-buried memories, of the old Mill House, of this small town that is drowning in secrecy . . . And of knowing that Nel would never have jumped.
Harry Bosch works cold cases, helping out the under-funded San Fernando police department. When a double murder at a local pharmacy is called in, Bosch is the most seasoned detective on the scene. But with experience, come the ghosts of long-forgotten crimes. A death row inmate claims Bosch framed him, and that new DNA evidence proves it. The LAPD investigators say the case is watertight, leaving Bosch out in the wilderness to clear his name and keep a sadistic killer behind bars. There's only one person he can trust to help prove his innocence: Micky Haller, The Lincoln Lawyer... As both cases tangle around him, Bosch learns there are two kinds of truth: the kind that won't die and the kind that kills.
May 2018 Book of the Month A tense, Hitchcockian psychological thriller in which nothing is as it seems, every truth might be a lie, and the past looms ever larger over the present, The Old You is a nail-bitingly modern slice of domestic noir. The Old You by Louise Voss A clever, gripping and thrilling tale that just demands to be read in one sitting. Lynn’s husband Ed has been diagnosed with Pick’s disease, a rare form of progressive dementia. As their world is turned upside down, odd things start to happen, and the past begins to cause waves in the present, causing Lynn to question her life and the man she married. Louise Voss writes with a cunning pen, snippets or huge wallops of information are slowly revealed, encouraging suspicion and turning thoughts on their head. I found my mind constantly ticking over and questioning everything. Lynn tells her own story, creating an immediate connection, yet it takes a while to get to know her, to understand her. ‘The Old You’ is a surprising, stimulating read, just be careful that it doesn’t lull you into false sense of security!
Kipp Brown, successful businessman and compulsive gambler, is having the worst run of luck of his life. He's beginning to lose, big style. However, taking his teenage son, Mungo, to their club's Saturday afternoon football match should have given him a welcome respite, if only for a few hours. But it's at the stadium where his nightmare begins. Within minutes of arriving at the game, Kipp bumps into a client. He takes his eye off Mungo for a few moments, and in that time, the boy disappears. Then he gets the terrifying message that someone has his child, and to get him back alive, Kipp will have to pay. Defying instruction not to contact the police, Kipp reluctantly does just that, and Detective Superintendent Roy Grace is brought in to investigate. At first it seems a straightforward case of kidnap. But rapidly Grace finds himself entering a dark, criminal underbelly of the city, where the rules are different and nothing is what it seems . . .
May 2018 Book of the Month Deliciously and thrillingly creepy, The Craftsman is an intensely gripping, superb read. Thirty years ago Larry Glassbrook confessed and was imprisoned for a series of child murders. Florence Lovelady was at the beginning of her career when she was involved in the case, now Larry is dead, however hauntingly similar events start to surface. The first chapter has huge impact, a mystifying and unexpected blast hit me full on, and then gently faded into the background. Set in two time frames, with thirty years between them, the story is brisk, and I loved the fact that you are expected to keep up. Sharon Bolton balances the knife edge between reality and extraordinary with a beautiful subtlety. This is just so, so readable, once in, I didn’t want to stop, and found myself reading into the small hours, be warned though, reading at night doubles the chill factor. As I raced through the final few chapters, I almost didn’t want the journey to end, yet the last few words sent the most delightful icy goosebumps snaking down my arms. I highly recommend stepping inside the pages, just give yourself up to the glory of the The Craftsman... this I have no doubt, will be one of my favourite reads of the year.
May 2018 Debut of the Month A poignant, inspiring debut to really immerse yourself in, to feel and become a part of. Hero De Vera originally from the Philippines, joins her Uncle and his family in California, she arrives with secrets, and enters a house with secrets, can the family unite as one? The prologue sets the stage, another woman, not Hero, speaks. Elaine Castillo placed me entirely into an unknown world, her words took me there so completely I felt empathy, warmth, remorse resonating through me. Each central character has a distinctive voice, the different women take centre stage, strong, vibrant, hurting, resilient. The feeling of not belonging, of fear, sat uncomfortably within me, slicing through my thoughts. I felt as though I was being told a direct recollection of events, as though I was sitting by their side, listening, and becoming one with the words. Provoking thoughts and feelings ‘America is not the Heart’ is a fascinating, often painful, yet entirely stimulating read. ~ Liz Robinson
May 2018 Debut of the Month Our narrator Jasper is thirteen years old. He has synaesthesia which means he hears sounds, voices etc as colours and recognises individual by those colours and not by any physical appearances. We spend nearly a hundred pages learning about the disadvantages of such a condition becoming aware of many of the lad’s traits which are similar to autism. He lives in a confused world misinterpreting interactions and events and “blowing up” in panic attacks. It makes for harrowing reading. A couple of years ago his mother died and shortly after her his grandmother. His father finds the boy difficult to deal with. Now something has happened. Jasper thinks he has killed his neighbour Bee. Jasper is a very unreliable narrator. To discover what happened he has to recreate the colours of the last day of Bee’s life and try to match them to the events of that day. He spends a lot of time surmising and then painting naturally in those colours. The investigating police officer, “Rusty Chrome Orange” is a saint who eventually the boy learns to trust, but the poor lad is suspicious of everyone else, even at one time, his father. How it all works is naturally steeped in colour. Interesting.
Wonderfully chilling, this is another thrilling treat from E. Lockhart, author of We Were Liars. Two girls, in an intense relationship are both looking for escape but at what cost? When one disappears events suddenly become darker and we fall into a world of murder, fraud and villainy as identities are blurred and friendships crossed. There's a fine line between superhero and supervillain when someone needs to save herself. Lockhart's writing is edgy, fast paced and keeps you guessing until the end. Creepy, provocative and daring the protagonists (Jule and Imogen) continually leave you with a sense of unease as they draw you in not knowing what to believe and where the novel will take you next. We're looking in from the outside but Lockhart only lets you see what she wants you to before shocking you over and over with the sudden twists in events. Brilliant as always, E. Lockhart continues to enthrall with this, her latest thought provoking novel. ~ Shelley Fallows
An entertaining and readable foray into a fascinating veiled world, this is the third novel in the Diplomatic Crime Series and can easily be read as a standalone. Set in a duel time frame, in the present Diplomat Jess Turner and DI Tom Sangster are in London for the visit of the Chinese Premier, while in the past Marianne Henderson finds herself in the firing line when she discovers the British Ambassador dead in a Shanghai hotel room. Author Jean Harrod was a British diplomat and has lived and worked in China, her voice rings with authenticity and she has the ability to take you into her world. Parallel lines run between Jess and Marianne creating tension and I sat with my thoughts, waiting, on alert. I worried for Jess and Marianne, and was reluctant to trust anyone! The ending of ‘Missing in Shanghai’ rather rushed towards me to wrap up proceedings, though I was pleased to see that the door is left open for a return.
The explosive new thriller from Sarah Pinborough, author of the NUMBER ONE Sunday Times bestseller Behind Her Eyes. Lisa has a sixteen-year old daughter Ava. They are close. She has one good friend, a work colleague, Marilyn. These three are our narrators with a few media and legal commentaries interwoven between them. It is a tale that shifts back and forth in time. Lisa has a dreadful secret that emerges when Ava saves a toddler’s life and the press move in. Ava then turns against her mother and we, the reader, get some of Lisa’s horrific childhood along with a whole lot of red herrings. The novel is full of nasty things happening to defenceless people. With false leads and trails with many twists and turns to keep you guessing, it has a pretty dramatic plot – very disturbing.
‘One of the chief worries besetting any author of an introduction to a novel is that of letting the cat out of the bag… From its opening pages, through the utterances of its protagonist, the butler Lister, Not to Disturb disburdens the introduction-writer of any such worry… Muriel Spark appears to have decided that foreshadowing, or mere adumbration of catastrophe, was not for her… It is for its foregrounding of the spoiler, and for the tension that results, between life’s openness and life’s plotted-ness, that I place Not to Disturb near the centre of the Spark canon…And there exist other reasons to find the novel central, among which the fact that it may be the funniest of all Spark’s novels, the most concentrated, too… And it is, further, the centre of what is almost a trilogy – a triptych, perhaps? – that includes The Driver’s Seat (1970) and The Hothouse by the East River (1973); all three are short, concerned with murder and/or suicide, and written principally in the present tense.’ From the Introduction by Dan Gunn This is one novel in the absolutely glorious, must-have, complete collection of all 22 novels by Muriel Spark. This series is a wonderful way to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Muriel Spark’s birth. Edited by Alan Taylor, author of Appointment In Arezzo, A Friendship with Muriel Spark, each perfectly sized and beautiful hardback book is introduced by a leading writer. Each introduction, while individually touching on thoughts and feelings, mentions the originality, the wit and humour, the cleverness of the writing. Whether an existing fan, or new to her works, this collection from one of our greatest writers, beckons, and quite simply, just asks to be read and re-read. ~ Lovereading.co.uk
New York, and the world, have been transformed by an unexplained global catastrophe now known as 'the Dark'. Once a modest researcher, has now become an involuntary detective. He is recruited by her elder sister to find the missing daughter of a local gangster in a city in chaos where anarchy and violence are just a step away. A bold, hugely original, multi-genre, cracking read. A private eye in a reimagined New York, where the internet and electronic data is as dead as a dodo, is asked to trace a woman. Within the first few words Maxim Jakubowski thoroughly set the scene, within a short time I felt a part of this world, could stand in the streets and take a gawking look around me. The clipped sentences of the investigator hark back to private eye novels, yet this is no caricature. The characters sing with intensity, sitting on the edge of larger than life, they feel as real as real can be. I smirked, raised my eyebrows, and flinched (oh how I flinched), as we cleaved through dystopian, slipped inside erotica, and smashed into supernatural. Right up my street, I absolutely adored this read. ‘The Louisiana Republic’ is a tale that refuses to be labelled, it is quite simply a raw, provocative, unique experience for lovers of the written word. ~ Liz Robinson
It begins with a nursery rhyme. Nineteen minutes later you die... The sixth gripping thriller in Lars Kepler's internationally bestselling series featuring Joona Linna. Perfect for fans of Stieg Larsson and Jo Nesbo. A hard-hitting rocket of a ride, if you’re squeamish, you may well be peeking between your fingers as you read. Superintendent Saga Bauer enlists the help of Joona Lina, who is serving time in prison, in order stop to a killer named the Rabbit Hunter. The authors are a well established, internationally best-selling writing duo, they seemlessly blend their skills into a story that blasts with fury and intensity. This is the sixth in the series, and if you’ve not come across Lars Kepler before, I would advise you start at the beginning with ‘The Hypnotist’, purely because it’s such a cracking series. I love the feeling of danger and menace that stalks the policing team themselves, who is to be trusted, who will survive, my heart was in my mouth on more than one occasion. As a nursery rhyme plays, the killer stalks his prey, violent, creepy and addictive, the tension in ‘The Rabbit Hunter’ sky-rockets through to the utterly gripping conclusion… and left me wanting more. ~ Liz Robinson
One ran. One stayed. But who is...the good daughter? Twenty-eight years ago, Charlotte and Samantha Quinn's childhoods were destroyed by a terrifying attack on their family home. It left their mother dead. It left their father - a notorious defence attorney - devastated. And it left the family consumed by secrets from that shocking night. Twenty-eight years later, Charlie has followed in her father's footsteps to become a lawyer. But when violence comes to their home town again, the case triggers memories she's desperately tried to suppress. Because the shocking truth about the crime which destroyed her family won't stay buried for ever...
Peter Guillam, staunch colleague and disciple of George Smiley of the British Secret Service, otherwise known as the Circus, has retired to his family farmstead on the south coast of Brittany when a letter from his old Service summons him to London. The reason? His Cold War past has come back to claim him. Intelligence operations that were once the toast of secret London are to be scrutinised by a generation with no memory of the Cold War. Somebody must be made to pay for innocent blood once spilt in the name of the greater good. Interweaving past with present so that each may tell its own story, John le Carre has given us a novel of superb and enduring quality.
‘She wrote The Driver’s Seat in under eight weeks in 1969. Trips away from her desk in Rome were mainly for shopping… I mean, what is shopping, what is a purchase, if not a more or less intense moment of desire settled by a sudden act of volition? Which brings us to the heart of The Driver’s Seat…The novel opens in, you guessed it, a boutique, where our heroine, Lise, is getting into an argument about a dress… Spark deconstructs the murder mystery novel with The Driver’s Seat, turning everything on its head, not least the easy separation of killer and killed… It is hard to think of any novelist, in today’s environment, who would risk creating a female character who plots her own victimisation. But courage is as courage does. Spark wrote it fifty years ago and the result is a little masterpiece of fiction.’ From the Introduction by Andrew O’Hagan This is one novel in the absolutely glorious, must-have, complete collection of all 22 novels by Muriel Spark. This series is a wonderful way to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Muriel Spark’s birth. Edited by Alan Taylor, author of Appointment In Arezzo, A Friendship with Muriel Spark, each perfectly sized and beautiful hardback book is introduced by a leading writer. Each introduction, while individually touching on thoughts and feelings, mentions the originality, the wit and humour, the cleverness of the writing. Whether an existing fan, or new to her works, this collection from one of our greatest writers, beckons, and quite simply, just asks to be read and re-read. ~ Lovereading.co.uk
Seven captivating short stories set in the rather wonderful world of DCI Daley, which can either serve as a revealing introduction to the series, or be enjoyed by existing fans. I love a good short story, and I adore this series, so was waiting expectantly with hands outstretched for ‘One Last Dram Before Midnight’. Denzil Meyrick unveils the past, divulges more information on certain characters (we see an entertaining glimpse of Hamish in his younger days), and hands us some thoroughly tricky crimes to solve. I have a real soft spot for DS Scott, and I was on the edge of my seat during one particular situation.‘One Last Dram Before Midnight’ contains Meyrick’s trademark dark police humour and plenty of gritty cases, a few ghostly whispers also caress the pages, ensuring a gathering of gutsy, compelling tales. ~ Liz Robinson
St Andrews in the 16th century is once again brought to captivating vibrant life. With allegations of ghosts, witches, the Spanish Armada and high jinks, the year 1588 is full of life… and death. If you adore the ‘Hew Cullan Mystery’ series then you are in for an absolute treat, as in this ‘Calendar of Crime’ are five different books. They may be short, but each packs a punch as Hew uses his investigative skills in an attempt to solve 5 different mysteries. Shirley McKay sets you so completely in that time that awareness settles over you like a cloak as you read. The very different tales take place in various parts of town, and while the same core characters travel with you through the year, you also greet new ones along the way. The historical notes section and glossary at the end is an interesting read in itself. You can dip in and out of ‘1588: A Calendar of Crime’ and read it as five fascinating stories, or completely immerse yourself in it as I did, and read it one satisfying sitting.
Offered as a Hammer novella, you may well expect a substantial amount of supernatural horror, however a more rational yet none the less uncomfortable and captivating read awaits. The story is told from Muna’s viewpoint, held as a slave, abused and kept in the dark, she still has a cunning intelligence and quietly bides her time. The simplicity of the writing reveals a truly complicated and at times distressing subject matter. The ending is left on a note of uncertainty, your thoughts scrabble for purchase as they are pushed off a cliff of understanding. The author writes with a true level of compassion without hiding the cruelty explored in this creatively taut, original and chilling read.
April 2018 Book of the Month Oh wow, this is a slicing, chilling, whammy of a read that has left me reeling. In 2015 an actress is abducted, the case has all the hallmarks of a murderer who was locked up in Broadmoor ten years previously, then a body appearing to link to the abduction and murders is found in Sweden. The second in the 'Roy and Castells' series continues with sharp, fast-paced drama. I really do recommend starting at the beginning with the fabulous ‘Block 46’, you need to get to know the characters, as to try to step into the middle of the storyline would be almost impossible. The translation is spot on, at no time did I stop to consider this originated in a different language. Set in two countries, and two storylines, with one story steadily advancing through the years, I found myself on full alert and at times racing to keep up. There are sections that are so horrifyingly descriptive they are almost impossible to read, yet the story is so gripping, it is impossible not to. Johana Gustawsson delivers morsel upon morsel of information, and stomach-churning shivers raced down my body. An inkling of what is happening zipped into my thoughts, however I couldn’t have even begun to imagine the final outcome. ‘Keeper’ isn’t an easy read, it isn’t meant to be, it is thought-provoking, challenging, and an absolute knock-out…I’m still in shock - highly recommended.
April 2018 Book of the Month In Solomon Creed we were introduced to a mysterious hero, a Jack Reacher/Superman cross with shades of Jason Bourne. This is his second adventure which, if you’ve not read the first you will certainly be compelled to do so after this. He is an unusual and involving hero who may or may not be linked to an ancient tomb some 4000 years old or the holocaust now 70 years ago. He has no memory but an inner drive to do things the reason for which he has no inkling. I love him. Here he knows he must save a boy and in doing so unearths a sinister plot with links to the German Reich and the end of the war. It opens with a gruesome murder of an old Jewish tailor and it is this man’s grandson Solomon must save. Along with the child’s mother they flee across France in search of three other Jews who survived with the old tailor. Wonderful chase scenes, near capture, many tense moments and lots of action before they do eventually find one of the other survivors. Now comes the twist as the plot is turned on its head and an extraordinary confession is revealed. Wonderful stuff. We learn lots more about Solomon. He has escaped a mental institution and is under the care of a Doctor Megellen who does seem awfully sinister! The plot thickens. Solomon has extraordinary mental abilities of memory and smell plus fighting skills and superfast reactions. There is indeed a great mystery surrounding the man which definitely draws you into wanting the next. Let’s hope it is not too long in coming. Hugely compelling and highly recommended. ~ Sarah Broadhurst
Manon Bradshaw of Missing, Presumed is back only she is now pregnant, attached to the Cambridgeshire police but working on cold cases until a murder occurs close to the school her adopted son attends. He is arrested for it. He is 12-years old. Written in alternative chapters between herself and a man who was once her junior, DS Davy Walker and a good friend, we follow the detail of police procedure over thirty-two days, straddling Christmas. Davy gives us the detail, Manon the family drama, spotted in between is the odd narrative from a few suspects, and others involved. It is both riveting and fascinating. Manon’s adopted son is black, so lots of problems in Cambridgeshire. Manon shares a house with her single mum sister and the girl’s autistic (although no-one says so), 2-year old toddler, Solomon. The boy’s father reappears and wants contact with his son which complicates the story, a story full of twists. Great stuff.
March 2018 Book of the Month What a beautifully written, captivating, and soulful read this is. Detective Sergeant Joaquin Morales, newly transferred, begins to investigate the death of a women found in fishing nets out at sea. Catherine Day leaves Montreal for a remote fishing village, looking for answers about her birth mother. The Gaspe Peninsula sits centre stage in the story, remote, set apart, and yet intimately connected to the sea. I immediately fell headlong into the story, the seamless translation encourages the words to join together, creating a vividly stunning picture. Catherine tells her own tale, having such personal access allows a connection, yet she still feels hidden from view. Other peoples thoughts tumble freely over the pages, yet they belong, they anchor the story. I felt that the author Roxanne Bouchard has a profound connection to the sea, she loves it, respects it, yet the immense power simmers, occasionally rages in the background. I quite simply adored ‘We Were the Salt of the Sea’, refreshingly different, unpredictable, yet deeply rich and touching, it became a part of me.
March 2018 Debut of the Month The first in the ‘DI Meg Dalton Thriller’ series is an addictive, absolute treat of a read. Meg recently moved forces and is now based in Derbyshire, she is thrown in the deep end when a lawyer is found dead in a cave and a sinister game of cat and mouse is initiated. ‘The Devil’s Dice’ was shortlisted for the 2016 Crime Writers Association Debut Dagger Award (for unpublished writers), so my expectations were high, and I certainly wasn’t disappointed. The first few pages set my thoughts fluttering, and throughout this tale a ghostly shadow hovers over the pages. Roz Watkins allows humour to enter at just the right moments, and has created a fabulous main lead. While Meg does have her fair share of problems, and a certain vulnerability too, she really grew on me. As I read, I set my mind free, to delve into the pages, to ponder, to speculate. The Devil’s Dice’ is just so readable, this is a thoroughly modern tale with a teasing strange connection to the past, and a towering cliff hanger of an ending… hopefully there will be many more stories to come.
March 2018 Book of the Month A tale in three parts and dual-narrative. Part one gives you the before and after Layla disappeared, part two when her lover Finn is haunted by her and part three, obviously enough, the conclusion. The narrative is in alternating chapters, one side, annoyingly, in italics. The time frame; twelve years, the plot; terrific. Finn, aged 28, falls heavily for Layla but on returning from a skiing trip in France she disappears. Years later her sister, Ellen, enters Finn’s life and rescues him from his despair. They have a gentle, solid, comfortable relationship which develops into love and eventually a proposal of marriage. Then things start to go wrong and part two seriously changes gear giving us a very unstable narrator and escalating tension. Part three turns the whole thing on its head again, drawing us at a hell of a pace to a conclusion that you only see coming as those final chapters unfold. This is compulsive stuff, a one-sitting read, so give it space.
Terrific, a two-sitting read if you can give it the space. Twin sisters, chalk and cheese; Callie, the narrator, plain and ordinary, Tilda, beautiful, ambitious and a successful actress. Tilda falls for an OCD controlling hedge-fund manager Felix, very rich. The book opens with Felix’s funeral and then we race through 211 pages finding out how and why he died but we are still a hundred pages from the end. So, does this then become a police procedural tale? No. It follows Callie trying to unearth what really happened, contrary to what the police believed. From the start she has worried about Felix’s influence over Tilda. She becomes active on an internet site, controllingmen.com where she corresponds with a couple of women whose advice she finds useful. Then she meets them, tries to help them and now the book becomes complicated and truly compulsive through to its unpredictable end. Highly recommended. ~ Sarah Broadhurst
When a young woman is found dead, Detective Jane Rizzoli and Forensic Pathologist Maura Isles are called to the scene of the murder. Though the body bears startling wounds, the actual cause of death is not immediately clear. A few days later, another body is discovered - a seemingly unrelated crime, but the lack of an obvious cause of death shows they have more in common than it would first appear. As Rizzoli and Isles race to discover the link between the victims before the killer can strike again, a mysterious person watches from the sidelines. She has the answers they're looking for. But she knows she has to stay quiet, if she wants to stay alive . . . '
This is a heart in mouth, positively thrilling read, likely to scare you out of your wits if you've ever tried online dating and dating apps without putting safeguards in place. A serial killer is hunting down his victims as they search for love online. When Solomon’s sister is targeted, Solomon can clearly see the links to other cases, however investigating officer DI Fox has other things on her mind. Once I started reading, I simply didn't want to stop, so make sure you set plenty of time aside for this corker of a read. The story sucked me in whole and consumed me, before spitting me out at the end, slightly dazed but positively buzzing. D. B. Thorne writes about Solomon, his relationships and family, with a direct, sincere pen, allowing compassion to enter the fray. Fast-paced, chilling, and electrifying, ‘Perfect Match’ provokes, excites, and enthrals in equal measures, my conclusion… it’s an absolute knockout. ~ Liz Robinson
A dramatic and oh so readable family tale, with enough tension playing through the pages to sink a battleship. Two years ago Ava vowed never to speak to her twin sister Zelda again, when an email arrives declaring Zelda dead, Ava can’t and won’t believe it, she returns home to the USA, to prove her scheming sister is in fact alive. It took a little while for me to warm to Ava, she shuns intimacy, yet is a fascinating soul. As I read and sank into the pages, I got to know the family, their flaws and quirks, what made them tick. Caite Dolan-Leach flays bare feelings and emotions, yet she writes with a beautifully compassionate hand. With emails and letters laying a trail for Ava to discover, my mind continuously raced away, puzzling over the clues. With suspense nipping at the heels of the storyline ‘Dead Letters’ is clever, twisty and entirely captivating read.
An absorbing, fresh, and ultimately incredibly satisfying police procedural and start to a new series. DI Maya Rahman and DS Dan Maguire investigate the murder of a Head Teacher at an East London School, another murder plunges the investigators into a race against time before the killer strikes again and the already tense community lose all faith. Short snappy chapters and rapid moves between time frames and characters kept me vigilant and alert to changes. I found the chapter headings helpful, and at no time was I left floundering, the writing kept me firmly in touch with the storyline. Vicky Newham is a psychologist and has taught in East London, her connection to the social issues in the novel feel authentic and tangible, I could feel the emotion, the confusion, the fear. Snippets of information, both about the case and Maya and Dan are gradually released, and the story emerges fully realised, strong, and bursting with energy. ‘Turn a Blind Eye’ is a cracking debut, with a bold sharp edge, and I look forward to the next in the series.
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
A fiery, fast-paced, bullet of a read, and the last in the Robert Finlay trilogy. Continuing on from ‘Deadly Game’, Robert Finlay and Kevin Jones find themselves in the middle of a whole heap of trouble. A Superintendent from the Complaints Investigation Branch is on the warpath, and then quite separately, a document from the past puts the two men directly in the firing line, and things turn very, very personal. Matt Johnson has the most credible and authentic voice, he blends his knowledge as a soldier and police officer into an absolutely cracking storyline. Finlay’s post traumatic stress disorder can clearly be felt in the small but biting descriptions of PTSD, it is a part of him, but not the whole of him, and he is an incredibly engaging character. A suitably dramatic end ensured I was kept on the edge of my seat. The Robert Finlay trilogy has been a thunderingly good read, and End Game is a wonderfully thrilling, gripping, and fitting conclusion.
Don't be left in the dark. In the hushed aftermath of a total eclipse, Laura witnesses a brutal attack. She and her boyfriend Kit call the police, and in that moment, four lives change forever. Fifteen years on, Laura and Kit live in fear. And while Laura knows she was right to speak out, she also knows that you can never see the whole picture: something is always hidden . . . something she never could have guessed. *********** See what everyone is saying about this brilliant read: 'It's SO good . . . I was carrying it around the house I was so gripped' Sarah Perry, author of The Essex Serpent 'A gripping, twisting, furiously clever read . . . I loved it' Ruth Ware, author of The Lying Game 'It's magnificent. Stunningly twisty plot and weep-makingly brilliant writing' Marian Keyes, author of The Break
If you're looking for a fresh, addictive police procedural with characters who spring into vivid life, then look no further than Susie Steiner's Missing, Presumed. It's Steiner's first venture into the crime genre - her debut, Homecoming, was more literary - and it follows the efforts of DS Manon Bradshaw, a single woman in her late 30s, who is trying to get a handle on the case of the missing Edith Hind. Edith, a Cambridge post-grad, was dropped home by a friend to the house she shares with her boyfriend; the next day, he returns to find the door open, coats scattered, blood on the floor. Manon knows she has hours to find Edith before the hunt will switch to one for a body, rather than a missing person, but the time slips away and Edith can't be found. Steiner follows the case from various perspectives - Manon's, her colleagues, Edith's mother - using the effect to build a compelling, thrilling crime novel which I thoroughly recommend. March 2016 Book of the Month.
March 2018 Book of the Month Simply superb, Come and Find Me is one hell of a clever, twisting, powerful story. This series is one of my favourites and DI Marnie Rome returns here in splendid style. Taking place a short time after Quieter Than Killing, Marnie and Noah find themselves hunting an escaped prisoner, for both, work overspills into their private lives. A strikingly distinctive voice greets you as you start reading, setting the scene so completely and clearly I could feel the presence, feel the confines of the prison. Sarah Hilary has the ability to take you into the words, to actually feel, to experience, and she sent my thoughts worming and writhing. At one point I found myself so exasperated and frustrated with one of the characters, it came as a shock when I came up for air and realised where I was. The ending buffeted me, surprised me, emotionally affected me, and a certain someone is still creeping around inside my mind. I already know that Come and Find Me will be one of my favourite reads of the year, and I think this is Sarah Hilary’s best yet, I simply can’t recommend this series highly enough. ~ Liz Robinson
March 2018 Book of the Month Take an old house on the edge of a remote Scottish island, place an American artist running away from her marriage in it. She finds an old journal from 1869 written by Ailsa whose husband dabbled in the occult and used her as an ‘instrument’ in his experiments. He was drowned at sea and she gave birth to a child thirteen months after she last saw him. Scandal, rumour and gossip abound when both mother and child die in mysterious circumstances. So now our present day tale unfolds and what a tale it is. This is Dennis Wheatley/Wicker Man/Stephen King territory, wonderful stuff, not for the feint-hearted. Our American woman blames jet lag, then alcohol, then hormones for her strange, erotic ‘dreams’. Slowly we are drawn into an ancient mystery, locals resenting infiltrators, or real horror … we know not and we turn the pages compulsively to discover all we can. Highly recommended. Lovers of historical fiction will know the author as S J Parris, a creator of Bruno the sixteenth century spy, this is her first book under this name.
March 2018 Book of the Month An absolutely cracking, and thrillingly creepy read. Ten years after her first boyfriend Will confessed to five murders in Dublin and was imprisoned, Alison is still keeping the past at arms length. After several copycat killings, the Garda ask her to return home and speak to Will in prison, and Alison finds herself facing the past head on. The first few intense pages set the tone, the words menaced and harassed my senses as they introduced an unidentified male. The chapters that follow are either headed Alison or Will, with the unidentified male occasionally making an appearance. Unsynchronised ‘then’ or ‘now’, keep you in the present or throw you into the past, and I was on high alert to the changes. Alison tells her own tale, allowing a deeper connection, I found myself uncertain and on edge, as more information from the past was released. Catherine Ryan Howard fans the flames of tension, she strings a taut wire between the murders of then and now, until they start to collide and the ending hurtles towards you. The Liar’s Girl is so clever, so captivating, and fairly crackles with dramatic intensity, oh what a truly fabulous read this is. ~ Liz Robinson
March 2018 Debut of the Month Told over a period of three weeks, with forays into the past, this thrilling debut gathers tension into a knotted tangled ball, before hurling it sky high. Set in Australia, a teacher is found murdered in the town lake with roses scattered in the water above her. Detective Sergeant Gemma Woodstock ignores connections to the past in order to pursue the case, yet years old secrets start to push forward and batter at her mind. Sarah Bailey allows Gemma her own voice, she speaks with a simple intensity, her words have a gritty almost dispassionate feel, yet passion is clearly simmering in the background, edging ever closer to the forefront. Other characters are occasionally allowed voice, giving further insight into Gemma. As information is slowly revealed, and the policing team struggle to place all the pieces, I felt the links closing in. The Dark Lake simmers with tension, infatuation, secrets, and lies, ensuring an absorbing, provocative read ~ Liz Robinson
A book of very distinct halves, the first introducing (or familiarising if you’ve read Lawson’s Troy series before) his society and characters, the second a beautifully paced spy story. The Troy series, of which this is one, fluctuates between the 30s and the 50s. In the early part of this tale we are in upper class England amid politicians, literati and undergraduates, where debauched parties abound. We meet the “Cambridge 5” and Guy Burgess who does not hide his homosexuality despite the period. Troy has a Russian girlfriend. The second part of the thriller is some years later where Troy is in Vienna and meets Burgess and an M15 agent who is supposedly bringing Burgess back to England. Things go very wrong, the story gathers pace and a cracking good spy tale ensues. Lovely stuff. ~ Sarah Broadhurst
Oh my word! This is knock-out of a read, punchy and raw, it made me flinch and yet I couldn’t stop, didn’t want to stop reading. If you haven’t yet read ‘Ragdoll’, do start there, mostly because it’s truly fabulous, but also because it’s the beginning of the ‘Fawkes and Baxter’ trilogy and you don’t want to lose out on any part of this story. ‘Hangman’ starts with the most intriguing prologue, I read it twice to let it sink in. It’s 18 months since the conclusion of the Ragdoll Murders for Baxter, a new chilling and gruesome killing spree begins, targeting both New York City and London, and Emily finds herself with two new partners. My advice is to set plenty of time aside, as once I started reading, I couldn’t bear to put this book down for a single second, and I read late into the night in order to finish. I find Daniel Cole’s writing compulsive, it makes me sit up and take note, I was on high alert at all times, buzzing with anticipation. The humour has a definite dark tone, yet it is there, and a welcome addition as an avalanche of horror descends. I wasn’t sure if Daniel Cole could live up to my expectations, he actually manages to exceed them, as ‘Hangman’ stands defiant, mind-blowing, striking… joining ‘Ragdoll’ as most definite must-reads.
When a man is snatched from a New York street in broad daylight, the only clue is a miniature noose left on the pavement. By the time criminal forensic scientist Lincoln Rhyme is involved, a video of the missing man is already online, his dying breaths set to a grisly music by someone calling himself The Composer. Rhyme and fellow investigator Amelia Sachs must follow The Composer across the globe as he continues his horrifying creation, kidnapping further victims to add their last breaths to his piece. But with Rhyme and Sachs in a whole new world with its own rules, how can they possibly guess what danger they're in when the music finally stops? 'One of the most consistent writers of clever, entertaining and often thought-provoking thrillers in the world' Simon Kernick 'The best psychological thriller writer around' The Times 'Deaver is a master of plot twists, and they are abundant in this story...essential for fans of the franchise' Daily Mail
Riveting, raw and gritty, this is a story that rockets around like a ball in pinball wizard’s championship run. Focusing on some of the players in a drug smuggling ring, this tale crosses oceans, and proves how cheap life can be when greed takes over. Patrick Hoffman’s first novel was shortlisted for the Crime Writer’s Association Ian Fleming (best thriller) Award, this is his second novel, and another winner. There is a real earthy feel to the writing, I felt as though I was balancing on a serrated edge, viewing the action from an external position, yet also completely in the moment. I could see humanity in action with the characters, could almost see their thoughts taking place, and feel their emotions. As the end came closer, and the snare grew ever tighter, so the story came full circle. Every Man a Menace is a chilling, short and sharp, utterly engrossing read, and I loved it. ~ Liz Robinson
This is a near future, post Brexit, political-cum-business thriller where Britain is seeking strong trade deals outside Europe. The protagonist, or so we initially believe, is Kate Thompson, a new, charming and good looking Tory trade minister who is sent to India just as war looks likely between India and Pakistan. She falls for (true love?) the chief of an Indian arms technology company which a UK electronic parts manufacturer is doing big business with. That company employs a lot of Muslims. Now the Indian/Pakistan problem overflows to the British factory workers who are influenced by Muslim extremists. Then a dirty American company steps in. Corruption leaks off the pages, intrigue and explosives situations abound; all is very action-packed. It is a good plot idea and a most enjoyable read. ~ Sarah Broadhurst
Longlisted for the Desmond Elliott Prize 2018 Gosh, this is provocative, powerful, and actually rather beautiful, I will admit to being completely bewitched. Ellie Fleck is ten years old, she lives with her father Peter on the North Yorkshire coast, her mother no longer lives with them. We spend time with Ellie, and the people around her, as she tries to understand what has happened. Ellie’s words sing with intensity, a child’s words, spilling on to the page, yet they seared their way onto my soul, and remain there. She describes sounds, I tested them myself, hearing, seeing, feeling, right in the centre of my stomach. She views the unseen, hears what isn’t audible, tests herself and those she loves as she reaches for comprehension. Carmen Marcus has the lightest, yet hard-hitting touch, I have fallen completely under the spell of her writing. ‘How Saints Die’ made me feel, I felt every word, every sentence, and I highly recommend meeting, and getting to know Ellie Fleck. ~ Liz Robinson
Murderous, Mysterious, Machination
From the suave to the sleazy, the saint to the sinner; from the sensitive to the sanguine, the sexy to the squalid, we just can’t resist a good sleuth. Here you’ll find immersive crime stories to feed your fascination for conspiracy, your love for psychological sorcery, to make your hairs stand up on the back of your neck, to make your blood run cold and adrenaline fill your nervous system. Whether you’re after a classic like; Poirot (Agatha Christie), Rebus (Rankin) or Morse (Colin Dexter); or a more contemporary crime confrontation from the likes of, Michael Connelly, Gillian Flynn or J.A Lance, there’s something here to float the most demanding of boats. Have a look at our Books of the Month from this and previous months for a head start to a great next read.
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