The Puritan: echoes of Agent Starling

An old-school serial killer manhunt, The Puritan undoubtedly owes a lot to the books of Thomas Harris – notably The Silence of The Lambs and Red Dragon – and to TV series like Criminal Minds and Mindhunter. In particular there’s a big tip of the hat to Agent Clarice Starling: not only is the protagonist…

Nocturne For Madness: hardboiled brilliance

In this, the first Thomas Haftmann book, we encounter the controlled madness of two men, one a former cop, the other a misfit and killer of women. Ex-homicide cop Thomas Haftmann is recently divorced and working as a PI. Barely surviving financially, and haunted by his own twin demons of gambling and alcohol, Haftmann gets…

Killer Women: fierce females in crime fiction

There have always been women detectives: imagine how empty the golden age of classic crime would have been without Miss Marple! But for many years, men stole the show in mystery and thriller fiction, until enterprising authors finally started letting the women off the leash. These days, thrillers are full of compelling female characters. Let’s…

Chaos: a new dragon rises

Imagine a snake and a mongoose, circling each other with vicious, deadly intent. That’s the nub of this battle of wits between a sadistic killer and the FBI investigator hunting for him. If you suffered withdrawal symptoms when the TV series ‘Hannibal’ drew to a close then ‘Chaos’ will get that monkey off your back.…