The Monster Underneath: dream weaving

In the Hannibal Lecter series, investigator Will Graham exerts his psychoanalytic expertise and his emotional empathy to ‘get inside’ the heads of murderers and monsters. In an entirely matter of fact way, author Matthew Franks takes that premise one step further and gives his protagonist, Max Crawford, the ability to read people’s thoughts in the…

Mission Khyber: a killer woman with a psy side

Psychic spy Tana Standish has a habit of appearing slap-bang in the middle of the most significant historical upheavals of the 20th century. This time she’s in Afghanistan in 1979, providing intel for the British secret intelligence service, running interference for freedom fighters, side-stepping a Soviet plot to kidnap her, liberating victims of oppression, avenging…

New books and recommended reads

Strong female protagonists are all the rage in this week’s new book round-up, but they’re also accompanied by a range of alpha-male former soldiers, covert agents and good old fashioned DCIs. Check out our selection of a dozen intriguing new titles and recommended reads, which include psychological thrillers, police procedurals, international espionage, domestic psychodrama, short…

The Tehran Text: the psychic spy returns

  I’m a sucker for historical espionage thrillers. Alan Furst may be my favourite author of all time; Philip Kerr never fails to entertain and Olen Steinhauer has elbowed onto my ‘must read’ list. So now Nik Morton joins that cohort with the continuing adventures of covert English agent Tana Standish. Tana’s not simply a…

Collecting The Dead: stalking a serial killer

  Magnus ‘Steps’ Craig is no ordinary federal investigator. He’s a tracker par excellence, a man who can zero in on criminals with uncanny accuracy. And that’s because he brings a touch of the paranormal to the party; a sixth sense, an ability to see people’s auras and the ‘shine’ they leave behind. If that…

Prague Papers: a cold war psi story

There’s a particularly nifty twist to this espionage adventure, set behind the Iron Curtain in the mid-1970s. The smart, sexy female protagonist isn’t just a rare survivor from Warsaw’s WW2 ghetto. Nor is she merely a highly skilled covert operative, brought up by the British military establishment to be extremely effective against the KGB and…