We feature new 20 reviews in each issue of Crime Review (www.crimereview.co.uk), together with a top industry interview. This time it’s author Attica Locke in the Countdown hot seat:
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Crime Review: @CrimeReviewUK
Linda Wilson: @CrimeReviewer
Sharon Wheeler: @lartonmedia
This week’s reviews are:
WHATEVER IT TAKES by Andy McNab, reviewed by Linda Wilson
When James Mercer’s latest heist doesn’t go according to plan, he’s presented with an ultimatum – pull off a seemingly impossible job or suffer the consequences.
MAIGRET’S PICKPOCKET by Georges Simenon, reviewed by Arnold Taylor
Maigret’s wallet is stolen but then returned to him, with nothing missing. The detective is intrigued when a mysterious man admits to the theft.
THE SECRET OF COLD HILL by Peter James, reviewed by Sharon Wheeler
Artist Jason Danes and his wife Emily think they’ve found their forever home. But then they start to feel they’re not alone – and discover that no one has ever lived beyond 40 in Cold Hill House.
THE DARKER ARTS by Oscar de Muriel, reviewed by John Cleal
Paranormal investigators Inspectors Frey and McGray face a race to save McGray’s trusted clairvoyant Madame Katerina when she is condemned to hang after being the only survivor of a séance involving three of Edinburgh’s wealthiest families.
WOLVES AT THE DOOR by Gunnar Staalesen, reviewed by Ewa Sherman
Bergen’s social-worker-turned-private investigator Varg Veum, who’s been scarred by earlier accusations of sexual abuse, decides to reopen his earlier case after he is nearly killed by a speeding car.
A SHADOW INTELLIGENCE by Oliver Harris, reviewed by Chris Roberts
MI6 agent Elliot Kane is brought home in a hurry when an operation is abruptly terminated. He seems to be under suspicion – and then he receives a message from a friend pointing him to a video of himself, a very clever fake.
THE SLEEPWALKER by Joseph Knox, reviewed by Kati Barr-Taylor
Aidan hears the mass murderer’s final words. But they are not the long-awaited location of his final victim. Far from it.
DROWNED LIVES by Stephen Booth, reviewed by Linda Wilson
When Chris Buckley is approached by an old man who wants his help untangling an old family rift, he’s not keen, and it shows. But when the man is killed in a hit and run accident, things take a more sinister turn.
THE BEAR PIT by SJ MacLean, reviewed by John Cleal
Captain Damian Seeker, Cromwell’s counterintelligence ‘enforcer’, faces another assassination plot against the Lord Protector and must also solve the riddle of a murder by bear!
PLAYBOY by Joe Thomas, reviewed by Chris Roberts
Detective Mario Lame is given a tip which means he is standing over a body when the military police arrive to investigate. He needs to find out what is going on before he ends up on the hook for the killing.
TO LOVE AND BE WISE by Josephine Tey, reviewed by John Barnbrook
The impossibly good-looking Leslie Searle inveigles his way into the life of a wealthy and artistic family, and then he goes missing. DI Alan Grant is called in to determine if he has been murdered and by whom.
THE CHRISTMAS EGG by Mary Kelly, reviewed by Viv Beeby
In a seedy Islington bedsit the body of Princess Olga Karukhin lies as if in state. Her secret trunk has been wrenched open and its precious contents gone …
THE HUNTING PARTY by Lucy Foley, reviewed by Kati Barr-Taylor
In the next three days, a group of Oxford friends will find out just how dangerous winter in the Scottish Highlands can be.
DEATH IN A DESERT LAND by Andrew Wilson, reviewed by John Cleal
Agatha Christie is asked by British intelligence to investigate doubts surrounding the death of explorer Gertrude Bell, and plunges into a snake pit of passions, deception and poisonous plots in the blistering heat of the Iraqi desert.
A SAVAGE GENERATION by David Tallerman, reviewed by Linda Wilson
With the civilised world on the brink of collapse, a former prison seems like a good place to hole up, but appearances can be very deceptive.
DEATH RUN by Harry Dunn, reviewed by Chris Roberts
Private detective Jack Barclay is asked to investigate when a man falls from the top of a block of flats, and crushes and kills a woman in a car below.
GHOSTS OF THE PAST by Tony Park, reviewed by John Cleal
What links the cold-blooded execution of a former Australian soldier in 1906 to a modern hunt for a fortune in buried gold? Sydney journalist Nick Eatwell digs deep into his family’s past – and finds his own life is in danger.
THE LIES WE TELL by Niki Mackay, reviewed by Kati Barr-Talor
Miriam’s daughter has disappeared, but she can’t tell her husband. Not if she is to keep her marriage from shattering into a hundred pieces.
NOT PLAYING FAIR by David Atkinson, reviewed by John Cleal
When seven professional footballers are killed in seven days, DCI Charlie Miskin and his team face a seemingly unsolvable problem.
THE BOXER by Nikesh Shukla, reviewed by Linda Wilson
Seventeen-year-old Sunny turns to amateur boxing after a vicious racial assault and finds himself pitted against a former friend in his first competition.
Best wishes to everyone for a pleasant festive season - and thanks for your support in 2019.