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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.
A Maxim Jakubowski selected title. A chilling tale of kidnap and implacable revenge, this is a striking debut by a young American lawyer which goes in the absolute opposite direction you thought it would and even qualifies for rightful comparisons with Gone Girl, Girl on the Train and, more unexpectedly, The Silence of the Lambs. When a pregnant 16-years old is brutally kidnapped and forced into a van, the aggressors are soon on the defensive as the victim rapidly turns out to be anything but vulnerable, and surprisingly cold, manipulative, cruel and infinitely talented in the art of strike back. The methodic way by which she plots to save her unborn child and take absolute revenge on her attackers is distinctly scary and even though the reader is rooting for her all along, she is not the sort of heroine you would like to take tea with! Powerful and full of twists all the way to an explosive finale, a gripping read.
Another intriguing and fascinating mystery from the author of ‘The Sea Detective Series’. Oceanographer Cal McGill finds himself in a small Scottish costal town attempting to solve a 26 year old mystery. Violet was abandoned as a baby, the day before her mother walked into the sea and disappeared. This story has a menacing depth to it, it has a more intimate feel than the first in the series, and we get to know more about Cal. Cal is 29 years old, yet it feels as though he has an old soul, I felt his love for the ocean, his kindness, yet he is somehow set apart. Mark Douglas-Home’s writing dances on the darker of life, though whether covering world wide issues, or more family orientated problems, an empathy shines through. ‘The Woman Who Walked Into The Sea’ is a gripping tale, full of family drama, with the twist of a mystery, and an enigmatic investigator, what more you could want! The Sea Detective series:1. The Sea Detective2. The Woman Who Walked into the Sea3. The Malice of Waves
They are messages and warnings that will help Charlie and the children she sees-if she can make sense of them. The disturbing images lead her from her home in suburban New York City to small-town Louisiana, where she takes a commission to write a true-crime book based on the case of Gabriel Deveau, the young heir to a wealthy and infamous Southern family, whose kidnapping thirty years ago has never been solved. There she meets the Deveau family, none of whom are telling the full truth about the night Gabriel disappeared. And as she uncovers long-buried secrets of love, money, betrayal, and murder, the facts begin to implicate those she most wants to trust-and her visions reveal an evil closer than she could have imagined.
For the reporter who has secured the exclusive interview, this is the scoop of a lifetime. For the detective who has lived a half-life since he failed to get justice for the lost little girl, it is a chance to uncover the truth that has eluded him for so long. It's time. Jean Taylor is going to tell us what she knows.
Shortlisted for the John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger Award 2016. This witty and twisty tale of an elderly con man intent on a final hurrah when he initially goes on a blind date with a retired, wealthy woman, brings more than smiles to the face. However she is not all she appears to be and as his own past is slowly unveiled in parallel to the con he studiously devotes himself to, increasing layers of lies and domestic intrigue are revealed which often turn the elaborate plot upside down. With echoes of Patricia Highsmith but without the die-hard cynicism, this is an affectionate and deliberately old fashioned psychological thriller with just the right touch of humour and humanity. Engrossing and with a tightly-engineered plot that holds surprises at every corner and what is there to dislike in a thriller where the main character is in his 80s? ~ Maxim Jakubowski The Lovereading view... Just fabulous. This is one of those wonderfully rare books that sets you in the middle of a familiar location and then prowls down a previously unexplored and unexpected path. Roy, vain and full to overflowing with self belief, is a liar of the highest order, it is second nature for him to deceive, to swindle and cheat, and Betty is Roy’s next target. Exquisitely pitch perfect, with clear and self assured writing, the story slides backwards in time, releasing information, raising suspicions and spiralling down into darkness. Nicholas Searle doesn't rush this tale, he openly describes Roy’s thoughts and feelings, allowing a connection to this con man, a connection that breeds disquiet and foreboding. As I turned the last page, I paused, and felt within, one of those electrifying moments before applause bursts forth. Deceptively subtle and surprising, yet bold and fearless, I will be shouting about ‘The Good Liar’, from as many rooftops as I can find. ~ Liz Robinson January 2016 eBook of the Month. A 'Piece of Passion from the Publisher... I want to tell you about this fabulously compelling novel Viking is publishing in January. The response within Penguin has been extraordinary so far – with staff in every department raving about it. There have been so many ‘water cooler moments’ with people asking: ‘when did you guess?’ or, ‘I didn’t see that coming at all!’ So, dodging any possible plot spoilers, here’s a little description of the book: The Good Liar is a story of deception, brilliantly imagined – the story of a conman, Roy, about to embark on the final con of his career. His target is Betty, a woman whom he is planning to seduce and then run off with her life savings. Roy is incredibly creepy and Betty is wonderfully admirable, if a little mysterious. The twists and turns of the narrative are endlessly surprising.I’ve been in publishing for twenty years and I have only very occasionally come across novels as original as this. I have also, only very occasionally witnessed such an amazing in-house response. It would be terrific if you liked the book as much as we all do. I would love to know what you think and please do not hesitate to get in touch with me if you’d like to know more about the novel or the author.Thanks so much for your time.Yours sincerely, Mary MountPublisher, Viking/Penguin
January 2016 Debut of the Month. An intriguing start to a new series by the writer and creator of Grange Hill, Brookside and Hollyoaks. When I knew Phil Redmond was the author I did a little mental shimmy of excitement and my expectations soared. Hard-hitting social and political themes sit centre stage, with the drama weaving and darting through the chapters. A pow of a prologue introduces the background to the main storyline, then an awful lot of characters are introduced in a very short space of time. The town of Highbridge itself sits slightly in the background, brooding, always present. I felt as though I had just moved into the town and was working overtime to get to know my surroundings, the movers and shakers, and of course the scummiest of the scum. It did feel at times as though this was an introduction, that ‘Highbridge’ is all about setting the scene and bedding in for the new series, however things really start to heat up by the half way point, and then the drama really kicks in. Like the first in a promising TV series roll on the second. ~ Liz Robinson
A masterful tale from beginning to end, quite literally unputdownable. If you are a fan of his terrific Lewis trilogy, then you’ll not be disappointed; if anything this is even better. We are still in the Outer Hebrides, now on the Isle of Harris, and still steeped in beauty and history. Here a man loses his memory, a bludgeoned body is found on remote rocks and back in the 19th century three lighthouse keepers disappeared. Linking these mysteries in a scientific discovery that must be kept secret, a mystery based on the drastic loss of bees around the world. There is big money involved and much at stake … terrific stuff, plausible and frightening. He really is very good indeed. ~ Sarah Broadhurst January 2016 Book of the Month.
The most polished crime writer on the murder beat ...Exhausting, exhilarating and damn scary, another 24-carat creation from the Queen of Thrills. (Daily Express). Five footprints are the only sign that Daniel Buck was ever here. Yesterday they were a family just like any other: Anna and James, and their little boy, Daniel. But in one careless moment everything changed. A front door accidentally left ajar...and Daniel was gone. Now they are a pair of strangers who can't even look each other in the eye. Distrust and unspoken words fill the void where their son used to be. Anna will go to any lengths to find Daniel - a four-year-old doesn't just vanish into thin air. But how far will this desperate search push her? Right to the brink. And beyond.
January 2016 Debut of the Month. Penetrating and intense, ‘Try Not to Breathe’ is a chokingly dark debut thriller. Amy and Alex are the same age, Alex is divorced and drinking herself to an early grave, while Amy is trapped inside her own teenage mind in a hospital bed, 15 years after a brutal attack. Alex begins to investigate the assault, at the same time as she struggles to deal with her own demons. Fast moving chapters are headed with characters names and dates, and slide around in time from 1995 to 2011. Holly Seddon writes with a sharp intensity, casting at times a desperately sad shadow, yet there is still an element of hope that struggles for survival. There is more than one jigsaw with missing pieces here, which creates a balance to the storyline. Enough information is given to allow suspicions to grow, and flourish. As each piece slots into the jigsaw, and a clearer picture starts to emerge, the writing begins to feel lighter, just as the story moves on with a harsh and bleak intensity, ensuring this is a thought provoking and riveting read. ~ Liz Robinson
A well-known scripwriter best known until now for his comedies and an authoritative book on the Falklands War, Prebble turns to psychological drama and displays an assured hand for atmosphere and cleverly dissects deep layers of the human mind with a scalpel. Two brothers, both with a particularly obsessive nature, find themselves thrown into disarray and a cat and mouse game with the police. While Roger is entranced by his beautiful girlfriend Harriet, Roger spends all his time with his insects in the garden shed, harbouring secrets which could be connected to the mysterious death of their parents. Who should the reader side with? Who is unreliable? The novel charges down the pages to a shock ending that caught me by surprise. Not one to be read in the dark. ~ Max Jakubowski
A Maxim Jakubowski selected title. Already a bestseller in over 30 countries, this stunning Norwegian debut finally appears in English. Such was its impact elsewhere that it will now be the subject of a forthcoming ITV series. When a young girl is found hanging from a tree with a note around her neck, evidence of a serial killer is, sadly, incontrovertible. Veteran investigator Holger Munch is determined to solve the case but cannot do so without the assistance of the brilliant Mia Kruger, his depressive ex-partner who is on her own countdown to suicide. The odd pair are memorable cops sometimes reminiscent of the duo in 'The Bridge' and their interactions and respective personalities are as gripping as the complex, splendidly engineered plot which will keep you up all night until its multiple strands are cleverly pulled together. Bleak and hypnotic, so much more than your average Scandi crime book. ~ Maxim Jakubowski
January 2016 Book of the Month. Ticktock, ticktock, this is a psychological mystery that encourages reading well past bed time and keeps minds ticking over and searching for rational (and perhaps not so rational answers). A Game For All The Family is a standalone novel and the perfect place to start if you haven't yet read anything by Sophie Hannah. The chills start as a family make their way to their new home, Justine tells the tale, then daughter Ellen writes a story that sets off an alarming chain of events. There’s a subtle sense of normality to the words, to the situation, that some seriously twisted deeds attempt to hide behind. The mystery within a mystery whispers possible explanations, incites overthinking and plots some devious trips and falls. This is a book where you may well find yourself searching for questions as well as answers, so enjoy the mental workout and ponder, just how far would you go to protect your family… ~ Liz Robinson Click here to read an interview with Sophie Hannah about the story behind her novels A Game for all the Family and The Narrow Bed.
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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A selection of authors who will feature in this Lovereading category include: