Kult: tracts and tropes

This earnest exposé tries hard to be an exciting multi-layered Scandi thriller, one which reveals the manipulative machinations of a global religious organisation as it gets its claws into the naïve young people of the Swedish suburbs. Unfortunately, it’s a bit of a lumbering lorry. Kult suffers from too many plotlines, too many improbable homicides,…

Crime Time: recent releases and the best new books

Our regular round-up of intriguing new releases features indie authors and big-name bestsellers. This time we’ve got gritty Britcrime, a new Nordic noir author and the best-known heroine in Scandi crime, an English mystery, a radical interpretation of domestic noir, an American psychopath and hardboiled pulp fiction – and a dark fantasy set in an…

A Book Of Bones: 21st century gothic

This gargantuan beast of a book concludes a story arc which began some six volumes ago in The Wolf In Winter. Far from being bare bones, A Book Of Bones is an extended, immersive and intense reading experience which delightfully disrupts commercial publishing conventions. For one thing, this is a 700 page epic – a…

Crime Time: recent releases and the best new books

Our regular round-up of intriguing new releases features indie authors and big-name bestsellers. This time we’ve got gritty Britcrime, bittersweet sunshine in Sicily, Sherlock Holmes, hardcore hitmen, exotic action in Kashmir, an historic mystery, political thrillers, medical mayhem, apocalyptic intrigue, searing social commentary, sassy female protagonists – and an American president running amok… The Overnight…

Return To Hiroshima: nuclear fallout

This complex and compelling novel of criminal intrigue contrives to be immense and intimate, simultaneously. The expansive narrative extends across time and philosophical space to pierce the psyche of a nation in turmoil, yet this sprawling story is told in intensely personal episodes. Author Bob Van Laerhoven pulls together an outlandish ensemble cast of peculiar…

Two Nights: a killer comeback

It’s brilliant when an established author comes out biting, gouging and punching below the belt with a revitalised zest for telling a rip-snorting story. That’s pretty much what’s happened here, with this new standalone thriller from one of the genre’s heavy hitters. Although I find forensic anthropology and the scientific analysis of crime scenes fascinating,…

A Game Of Ghosts: Live, die, repeat

If you’re enjoying something immensely, why would you ever want it to stop? That’s the nub of John Connolly’s Charlie Parker series of supernatural crime-thrillers. The author and his audience certainly seem to relish Charlie’s annual appearance in which he confronts the latest cult of ancient evil to come crawling out of the undergrowth. But…