Indie Week! British mysteries and crime-thrillers

We began our exploration of new titles and recommended reads with exotic adventures overseas from small publishers and independent authors. This time we’re staying closer to home with a selection of stories based in and around the United Kingdom – but not necessarily told by British writers. You may be unfamiliar with some of these…

Dead Reckoning: ugly things, beautifully written

Steel yourself for sixteen stories from the dark side; sinister slivers of broken and bloodied lives which blur genre boundaries to form a distinctly unsettling compendium. Several are bite-size rapid reads, others explore human frailty at greater length. They’re all united by the author’s distinctive voice which is unconventional and often complex. Dino Parenti crafts…

Threads In Dew: short, sharp and savage

This collection of half a dozen short stories is like a needle: sharply honed, painfully to the point. None of them make for comfortable reading: in a few brief pages they deliver a disconcerting and discordant viewpoint from a series of snapshot situations. This is genuine contemporary noir which breaks boundaries and refuses to be…

Last Train To Helsingør: spooky Scandi stories

Deliciously delicate, these Danish short stories meander along the sinister side of twilight, weaving dark descriptions of despair, duplicity and justly-deserved retribution. The 19 haunting and subtle stories in this anthology come from author Heidi Amsinck who, although born in Copenhagen, writes fluidly and artfully in English. This makes her writing refreshingly accessible for an international…

The Stoner Stories: a killer cast of characters

Meet JJ Stoner: musician, motorcyclist… and murderer. For years, Stoner has used sharp blades, blunt instruments and his innate persuasiveness to discreetly resolve tricky situations for the British government. During Stoner’s military days his kills were government-sanctioned. As a mercenary they were privately contracted. Some times, they were entirely off the books… ‘When the fighting…

Snow Flurries: cold war consequences

Historical fiction doesn’t pay much attention to the German Democratic Republic. East Germany, we called it, the subjugated ruin of half a country which didn’t benefit from a Marshall Plan but which instead spent 41 years in the chilling isolation of the cold war, on the wrong side of the Iron Curtain. In four short…

Thriller writer Frank Westworth goes over to the Darker Side

Author of the Killing Sisters and JJ Stoner crime-thrillers, Frank Westworth, is the latest addition to the line-up for next year’s ‘Darker Side Of Fiction’ convention. Hosted by Hourglass Events, this one-day bookfest of all things mysterious will be held in Peterborough, UK, on October 7th 2017. To date, 24 authors have confirmed they’ll be…

Justice, Inc: savvy, somewhat savage short stabs

This caustic collection of ten satirical stories certainly sticks the knife into some of the less appealing characteristics of modern-day American (and European) social behaviour. Author Dale Bridges deftly employs the time-honoured device of isolating a single theme or talking point, and exaggerating it to extremes in a near-future alternate reality. He’s created a collection…