As autumn approaches so the evenings lengthen – hurrah! More time to curl up on the sofa with a good book. Here’s a stack of them; cracking crime fiction including the great American novel, medical murders, literary fiction and historical investigations: private eyes, dodgy detective, thrillers, killers and all-action assassins, from world-class writers and newly discovered indie authors…
THE JEALOUS KIND by James Lee Burke
Literary historical thriller. On its surface, life in Houston in the 1950s is as you would expect: drive-in restaurants, souped-up cars, jukeboxes and teenagers discovering their sexuality. But beneath the superficial normality, a class war has begun. In this turbulent environment, Aaron Holland Broussard discovers the poignancy of first love and a world of violence he did not know existed. As Aaron undergoes his harrowing progress from boy to man, JLB evokes the inspirational and curative power of first love and what men might do to protect it.
FIFTH COLUMNIST by Frank Westworth
Quick thriller. A bent copper is compromising national security and has to be rapidly neutralised, but none of the evidence will stand up in court. That’s exactly why men like Stoner operate in the shadows, ready to terminate the target once an identity is confirmed… An action-packed quick thriller featuring covert operative JJ Stoner, who uses sharp blades and blunt instruments to discreetly solve problems for the British government.
CURIOUS MINDS by Janet Evanovich and Phoef Sutton
New series. Emerson Knight is introverted, eccentric, and has little to no sense of social etiquette. Good thing he’s also brilliant, rich and handsome, or he’d probably be homeless. Riley Moon is given her first assignment babysitting Emerson Knight. An enquiry about missing bank funds develops into a missing man, missing gold and a life-and-death race across the country. Only irrepressibly charming Emerson Knight and the tenacious Riley Moon can save the day…
A CHASER ON THE ROCKS by Simon Maltman
Debut novel. An ambitious tale of intrigue set in Ireland containing two mirror-image plots, one historical thread in WW2 and one in the present day. In these different time-zones we follow a pair of private detectives into the murky worlds of espionage, drug dealing, blackmail and murder. On the real-world backstreets of Belfast, their investigations end up overlapping in an extraordinary fashion…
ANGEL by LJ Ross
Romantic suspense. This episode of the DCI Ryan series features a predator who’ll make you his angel – but you have to die first. The body of a redheaded woman has been found buried in a shallow grave and the killer has given her wings, like an angel. Soon, another woman is found at a different cemetery, followed quickly by another. Panic spreads like wildfire as a new serial killer is born, and Ryan’s band of detectives must work around the clock to unmask him before he can strike again. Murder and mystery are peppered with romance and humour, set amidst the spectacular Northumbrian landscape.
BLOOD SACRAMENT by TK Laverents
Psychological thriller. When a killer hears the voice of the Virgin Mary, Catholic priests are targeted and an innocent Marine Corps veteran goes on the run for his life. Between the converging paths of the psychotic killer and his prey, Detective Lieutenant Patrick McConnell races against time to prevent the next murder…
COME TWILIGHT by Tyler Dilts
Hard-boiled. For the first time in years, things are going well for Long Beach homicide detective Danny Beckett. He’s closing cases with his partner and keeping a spare suit at his girlfriend’s condo. But Danny’s peace is shattered when a bomb detonates in his car, shunting him into protective custody. The headstrong investigator must resist the temptation to break protocol—and find the willpower to stop his own self-destructive behaviour before it threatens his two most important relationships.
BEAVER VS BEAVER by Portia Porter
Legal comedy. Young lawyer Portia Porter has struck out on her own in Ducklingburg, South Duck. Inexplicably, the first client who calls on her is a multi-millionaire. And he needs a divorce. Lucky Portia dreams of fame and fortune already! But as the billable hours and expenses mount, Portia learned first-hand how hard it is to get a client to pay if they don’t want to. Will her tiny firm crumble under the strain?
COINCIDENCES by Chris Graham
Britcrime. One of the ‘Lena’s Friends’ series, set in the Bristol and Avon area. Weaves together multiple plots including a miscarriage of justice, well-heeled hedonists, a wealthy businessman with a penchant for beautiful young women wearing school uniforms, a grieving mother determined to discover the truth about her son’s murder, forgery and more. The tangled strands converge to deliver both death and justice…
THE HOMEPLACE by Kevin Wolf
Debut novel. Follows in the footsteps of James Lee Burke to deliver part murder-mystery, part Great American Novel with a pleasingly flawed protagonist. Suspenseful, dramatic literary crime which captures the stark beauty of life on the plains of Colorado and juxtaposes the cruelty of man alongside the majesty of nature.
RULES OF THE EARTH by Wendy Cartmell
Stranger-danger thriller. Two lost girls. An out of control detective. Is anyone safe? Sgt Major Crane is out of the army, out of a job and definitely out of sorts. So when DCI Anderson throws him a lifeline, Crane grabs at it with both hands. A young girl has been found, dazed, bruised and mute. As Crane and Anderson try and find out what happened to her, another girl is found. But this time she’s dead…
FALLING IN DEATH AND LOVE by Magnus Stanke
Retro thriller. It’s 1977 in steamy Mallorca. David falls hard for Aurora and vice versa, but the holiday is over. When she returns she isn’t alone, the deadly chase already underway. First the hitmen, then the police. A hard-boiled, heartfelt thriller featuring love, guilt, paternity, murder (but not necessarily in that order).
CLOSED CASKET by Sophie Hannah
Classic crime. Hercule Poirot returns in an all-new murder mystery which can only be resolved by the eponymous Belgian detective and his ‘little grey cells’. Marks the centenary of the creation of Christie’s world-famous detective and was commissioned by Agatha Christie Limited to pen a second fully-authorised Poirot novel.
FORBIDDEN BIRTH by William Rubin
Medical thriller. Doctor Christopher Ravello is driven by an unquenchable desire to avenge his mother’s senseless murder. He forsakes a lucrative career in medicine, and plunges headlong into the brutal, unforgiving world of a New York City homicide detective. Head of the new Division of Medical Crimes, Ravello’s first case pits him against a brilliant, sadistic serial killer…
SOUTHERN CROSS by Grant Patterson
World crime. There are worse places to be a washed up, gringo ex-cop than Brazil. Still, Will Bryant isn’t very good at sitting behind a desk, so a PI job seems like an easy score. The rules in Brazil aren’t exactly as clear-cut as they were in his native Canada. From Sao Paulo to the Paraguayan border, from 1970s battlefields to the gang-ruled slums of today, Will Bryant needs every skill he ever learned, and friends he never knew he had, to survive. This may be Brazil. But it’s no carnival.
BLOOD ON THE TRACKS by Barbara Nickless
Female detective. A young woman is found brutally murdered, and the main suspect is the victim’s fiancé, a hideously scarred Iraq war veteran. But railroad police Special Agent Sydney Rose Parnell can’t shake the feeling that larger forces are behind this apparent crime of passion. In the depths of an icy winter, Parnell and her K9 partner, Clyde―both haunted by their time in Iraq―descend into the underground world of a savage gang of rail riders. There, they uncover a wide-reaching conspiracy and a series of shocking crimes. Crimes that threaten everything Parnell holds dear.
More ripping reads will follow in our next round-up. Authors / publishers: feel free to drop an email or find us on Facebook if you’d like your title to be mentioned next time around. Please also share this post to assist your fellow scribblers. Thanks!