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Artefacts of the Dead


Written by Tony Black – He is probably best known as the author of the acclaimed Gus Drury thrillers, set in the mean streets of Edinburgh, but Tony Black has turned his sights to a much less likely setting for Artefacts of the Dead. That setting is the sleepy seaside town of Ayr, where the[...]

A Man’s Head


Written by Georges Simenon, translated by David Coward – Having accrued an incomplete collection of dog-eared, yellowed and slightly foxed editions of Simenon’s Maigret novels by scavenging second hand bookshops, Penguin’s project to reprint all 75 of them was music to my ears. This set is being translated afresh by the likes of David Bellos,[...]

The Eagle Turns


Written by James Green – In my mind there are two types of spies: those who know everything and those who know nothing. Jean-François Mercier in Alan Furst’s The Spies of Warsaw is an example of the former, as is John le Carré’s George Smiley, while examples of the latter feature heavily in the works of Eric[...]

Nine Years Gone

Written by Chris Culver – The New York Times bestselling author of the Ash Rashid series of detective mysteries has this time turned his attention to a standalone psychological thriller, set in St Louis. Nine years ago, crime novelist Steve Hale made a decision that was destined to haunt him for ever. By helping his[...]

Cop Town


Written by Karin Slaughter – We’re in Atlanta and it’s 1974. Doesn’t sound long ago if you’re of a certain age – but trust me, mid-70s Georgia is a world away from the uber-politically correct here and now. It’s November as the book opens, and a distraught police officer is running through the deserted, late[...]

The Sun Is God

The Sun is God, Adrian McKinty

Written by Adrian McKinty – Adrian McKinty has made his name with three crime trilogies, the latest of which featured Catholic cop Sean Duffy in the midst of sectarian turmoil in 1980s Belfast. So, The Sun is God is a bit of a departure. Here we meet Will Prior, once a junior officer in The[...]

The Fever

The Fever (Megan Abbott)

Written by Megan Abbott — With her early, noirish crime novels, Megan Abbott revisited the hardboiled tradition and period detail of 1950s LA from a female character’s perspective. Her more recent books, including Dare Me, have focused on the mystery and intrigue surrounding teenage girls. From that description you might expect something suited to Young[...]

The Final Silence

The Final Silence

Written by Stuart Neville — DI Jack Lennon is in a world of trouble. He is half crippled by slow-healing bullet wounds, incurred while engaged on a case which ended with his suspension from the police force. Stolen Souls (2012) recounts this story, and our review is here. Lennon, struggling to escape the dangerous embrace[...]

Forty Acres


Written by Dwayne Alexander Smith – Here is a novel which has attracted attention for its plot twist which turns race relations and America’s colonial legacy on its head. The forty acres of the title refers to reparations promised, but not delivered, to the slaves emancipated after the American Civil War. The plot centres on[...]

The Darkest Heart

The Darkest Heart 200

Written by Dan Smith — Set in a little-known part of Brazil, this is a novel which explores the very thin line between darkness and light, life and death, good and evil in this country of contrasts. Yet in the process, it delves into the very same contrasts within the human heart – and how[...]

Eeny Meeny


Written by MJ Arlidge — Just when you thought crime fiction couldn’t get more gruesome, along comes MJ Arlidge’s Eeny Meeny to raise the bar. Even the publisher’s marketing campaign was edgy and disturbing. In this suspenseful novel, mainly set in Hampshire, someone is kidnapping pairs of victims and placing their drugged bodies in sealed containers.[...]

The Edge of Sanity

Edge Of Sanity

Written by Sheryl Browne — Just outside Worcester, in the relative peace of rural England, Daniel Conner owns a canal boatyard. Or rather he did. He’s selling the business and is waiting for the contract to be finalised. He desperately needs to move on with his wife and daughter. The youngest member of their family[...]


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