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Author of the Month continues to be Attica Locke with her astonishing and highly emotional novel, Bluebird, Bluebird. As with all her novels, this is based in the deep South and starts a new series featuring Darren Matthews, a black Texas Ranger. Under the sub-title of the Highway 59 heading, Locke brings Matthews in direct contact with old views and prejudices that go back decades. Locke always digs deep in the emotions and psyche of her characters and does not disappoint with this new series. She also leaves us with a bitter taste ending that will have further repercussions in subsequent novels. Locke simply gets better and better with each novel.

Fresh Blood in November is Finn Bell who has just won the Ngaio Marsh First Novel Award for his New Zealand debut, Dead Lemons. Finn Bell is the name of the main character (yes, I know, it is the same as the authorís!) and moves to the south of New Zealand. He is wheelchair bound after a horrific car accident and is removing himself from the rest of humanity. However, escape is never that easy and his new-found paradise is full of serpents who want rid of him before he can find the truth from a decades old disappearance. This is a very strong debut full of twist and turns and humanity. Bell is a fine winner of this award which is growing in importance with every year.

We have a bumper number of fantastic Reviews include new books from Ruth Rendell, Syd Moore, Zoe Sharp, Lee Child, Lindsey Davis and many more.

Classic Crime will change in November to an author who came to prominence in the 1980ís and is well-known for her accurate psychological thrillers.

The 5th of November is in everyoneís calendar and whether you enjoy fireworks or not, it is symbolic of a very fragile political and religious time of King James I/VI. At the time it was considered a sin to be a practicing Catholic and with political animosity between England and Spain, emotions were heightened also. As the authorities closed in on the plot to blow up Parliament and Guido Fawkes, James Jackson has taken the events of November 1605 and produced an extremely exciting and gripping plot for his new book, Treason. Read the excerpt on the Events page.

The Penguin microsite features Alastair Gunn to celebrate the impending arrival of his new D.I. Antonia Hawkins novel arriving on the 16th November, Cold Christmas. In the small village of Cold Christmas there's a church that faces the wrong way. What has it to do with the three dead men found in a London flat? DCI Antonia Hawkins has a killer to catch. Only she can't predict what is waiting for her at the end of the chase.
This will certainly be a crime thriller that many will love to find in their Christmas stocking!

Penguin Microsite

A new Christmas Top Ten for 2017 will go up mid-November. For some years it appeared that any crime thriller alluding to Christmas was out of fashion. Now it is marvellous to once again see with the huge tide and appetite for Golden Age re-issues, that Christmas anthologies and novels are once more on the menu. It does mean that with all the wonderful spread of Christmas goodies, that it does make my job that little bit harder to whittle down to the best ten on the market. I promise you, I will give it my best shot to bring what I feel are the best presents you can give any crime fiction lover!

To check out all our past reviews use the Review Archive. Search under author surname and author Christian name if you canít recall the surname. And for good measure you can also search under the title of the book. Simply click on the box at the top of the page and then click on to the letter of the author/title you would like to find. As you will see, we have reviewed a huge amount of books during's twelve years. Have a wander round our archives and I hope you will find something you might have missed first time around!

If you have any comments or have a particular author you would like to see highlighted on this website please e-mail me at

Chris Simmons
Online Editor.