Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Favourite Discoveries of 2016 (7)

Here is Mark Bailey's favourite crime/thriller discovery of 2016:
Mark's Favourite Discovery of 2016

The Library Suicides / Y Llyfrgell (Film 2016)

When famous author Elena Wdig commits suicide, her twin daughters Nan and Ana are lost without her. Elena’s final words suggest that her biographer, Eben, murdered her. One night, the twins set off to avenge their mother’s death whilst working as Librarians at the National Library of Wales in Aberystwyth but are disrupted by night porter Dan who finds himself unwillingly caught up in the saga.

I bought this on DVD after reading a number of positive reviews about it. It definitely isn’t crime or mystery but an offbeat thriller perhaps or Science Fiction or Horror even – it really does defy categorisation.

It is directed in Welsh by award winning director Euros Lyn (Broadchurch Series 1, Happy Valley, Doctor Who, Torchwood: Children of Earth) and based on a novel by Fflur Dafydd. It has a very small cast headed by Catrin Stewart as the twins and is shot almost entirely in the bowels of the National Library of Wales in Aberystwyth (the scenes that aren’t take place just down the road from the building that acts as the police station in Y Gwyll/Hinterland which you see in long shots).

Why do I like it?
It plays with the whole notion of narrative and character – what you see and hear can be taken in multiple ways and you are not sure what is the truth or even if there is such a thing.
The cast are excellent especially Catrin Stewart who plays the twins so you begin to care about them – they may look identical but morally & psychologically they most certainly are not.

If you get a chance to see this (and given the involvement of S4C and BBC Films I would expect a TV showing in the UK in the next year or so) watch it – it is a great 87 minute film.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Favourite Discoveries of 2016 (6)

Here is Lynn Harvey's favourite crime discovery of 2016:
Lynn's Favourite Discovery of 2016

My discovery of 2016 is a novel – or perhaps its writer: WOLF WINTER by Cecilia Ekbäck (pb, 2015, Hodder).

Imagine you are a woman come to a remote new country with two daughters, a few goats, a cow – and some seed for crops. Imagine mountains where you have known only marshland and lakes; new neighbours whose ways you don't know... and a husband who has to leave for a job on the coast many miles away. No, this isn’t a settler story of the Wild West. It’s 1717 in Northern Sweden, in Arctic territory newly claimed from the native, nomadic, Sami reindeer-herders.

During their first bitterly harsh winter in their new home two young girls find a man’s body in a forest glade. Everyone says that wolves killed him. But the girls’ mother, Maija, doesn't think so. Stubborn and curious, Maija is obsessed with the riddle of the man’s death but this winter is so cold that she must first concentrate on feeding herself and her daughters. As the Arctic winter sets in, the wolves start to howl and move closer to Maija’s shack of a home ... and the dead man begins to appear to her adolescent daughter Frederika.

WOLF WINTER is the first published novel of Swedish-born, Canadian resident, Cecilia Ekbäck and it is not only gripping but beautifully written. Ekbäck’s own family roots lie in the country where she sets her novel and her prose plunges us straight into its bitter winter cold. Ekbäck spells out rules for survival in this harsh land in all their necessary detail. She also gives us insight into the life of a settler community in 18th century Swedish Lapland where the Church not only records and educates individuals but makes and enforces the law. Mutual distrust between the new settlers and the native Sami (Lapp) reindeer-herders gives more room for suspense as the stubborn Maija sets out to find out who killed the man in the forest – and why. Against a background of poverty and hardship during a time of perpetual war, Ekbäck has created a blend of frontier-Western and Nordic-noir; a tense whodunit which combines the dangers of the spirit world with the privations and threats of frontier life. It is peopled by characters well-realised if not always likeable and it is an exciting, beautifully written and impressive first novel.

Deciding against creating a series based on Maija, Ekbäck has chosen Blackasen Mountain through the passage of time as her theme. This is where her second novel IN THE MONTH OF THE MIDNIGHT SUN is also set but this time during the heat and daylight of a Northern summer in 1856. I haven’t yet caught up with this novel but I certainly intend to.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Favourite Discoveries of 2016 (5)

Here is Michelle Peckham's favourite crime discovery of 2016:
Michelle's Favourite Discoveries of 2016

Fortunately, while in the US in the summer, I was able to access many TV productions of books by my favourite Scandi authors, including those based on Liza Marklund's Annika Bengtzon series. I watched all the episodes, and they were excellent. Unfortunately, they don’t seem to be available in the UK, but hopefully will be at some point.

I also discovered the two films of the first two Jussi Adler-Olsen Department Q series (The Keeper of Lost Causes, and The Absent One). Both were excellent, and highly recommended.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Favourite Discoveries of 2016 (4)

Here is Amanda Gillies's favourite discovery of 2016:
Amanda's Favourite Discovery of 2016

Night by Elie Wiesel tr. Marion Wiesel (Original version written in 1958. This edition translated from French in 2006.) ISBN 0374500010, New York: Hill & Wang/Oprah Book Club

This novel was brought to my attention when the death of Elie Wiesel was announced earlier this year. The story of his life made me curious to discover his writings and this book, NIGHT, seemed a good place to start. Nobel Peace Prize winning Wiesel was a Romanian-born American professor and spent some time incarcerated in Auschwitz and Buchenwald concentration camps during WW2. NIGHT is his account of his experiences as a prisoner in these camps. It describes the terrible things he experienced and how he struggled to survive. The loss of his parents and how he stopped believing in God, since he couldn't imagine God allowing such things to happen to people. It is a harrowing read yet also incredibly human and full of hope despite the darkness.

The original version was written in French but it has been translated into English by Wiesel's wife. The translation is extremely well done and the book describes such terrible things that it is painful to remember it actually happened. This book is described as being one of the most important works of the twentieth century. Given the way the world seems to be heading, Wiesel's message should be read by everyone as a reminder of just how far things can go.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Favourite Discoveries of 2016 (3)

Here is Rich Westwood's favourite crime discovery of 2016:

Rich's Favourite Discovery of 2016

My discovery of the year is Ethel Lina White, the writer best known for THE WHEEL SPINS, which was adapted by Alfred Hitchcock as The Lady Vanishes in 1938.

White was born in Abergavenny in 1876. After three mainstream novels she turned to crime in 1931 and was writing until her death in 1944. I've read a few of her fourteen crime novels in 2016 and have been really impressed with her versatility.

FEAR STALKS THE VILLAGE (1932) is a classic poison-pen story set in a close-knit community. The titular village is one of those idealised English villages of the Golden Age mystery, but stretched almost to hyper-cosiness. It is a deliberate caricature of the type.

SOME MUST WATCH (1933) is a claustrophobic siege set in a lonely Victorian house on the Welsh borders, damp and wind-swept, surrounded by trees, and difficult to reach by car. There's a murderer at large in the countryside - or is he in the house? This has also been filmed, as The Spiral Staircase.

WAX (1935) is set in a small town rife with vulnerability, dysfunction and cruelty. A young journalist becomes obsessed with the town's wax museum, with Gothic consequences.

THE WHEEL SPINS (1936) finds a young socialite travelling across Europe by train. Sunstroke, lack of food, and her lack of understanding of the language all combine to give the journey an unpleasantly feverish atmosphere. And then the only friendly face, an English governess, disappears without trace.

STEP IN THE DARK (1938) is another type of thriller again, more akin to a Mary Stewart romantic suspense with a heroine choosing between two men and (of course) picking the wrong one.

If you're tempted, a collection of White's work is available on Amazon very cheaply. For print editions, Orion's imprint The Murder Room has republished her in paperback. Finally, two of her short stories, CHEESE and WAXWORKS, have appeared in British Library anthologies (CAPITAL CRIMES and SILENT NIGHTS).

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Favourite Discoveries of 2016 (2)

Here is Geoff Jones' favourite crime discovery of 2016:

Geoff's Favourite Discovery of 2016

My discovery is Phil Rickman. A Lancastrian now living in Wales. He sets his Merrily Watkins series in Herefordshire. She is a priest, single mother and an exorcist.

Not a usual crime thriller, but mystery and death do appear, and there is a police detective - Frannie Bliss - who gets to know Merrily. Full of interesting characters including Merrily's partner the ex-hippy/musician Lol and her daughter Jane. When the series starts Jane is an awkward teenager and as it progresses she becomes a rebellious young woman! Amazon, on a daily deal, offered The Magus of Hay which is mainly set in the book town. I've now gone to the beginning. The paranormal is often in evidence, but this is a balanced well written series. The author has a stand-alone crime thriller The Cold Calling and the supernatural is very much in evidence. He has another series featuring Dr John Dee the Elizabethan magician. The books are always good value comprising of around 500 pages, very different but excellent. You believe in Merrily and enjoy her good times and suffer with her when things go wrong.

I'll definitely be reading more of this excellent series and also try his John Dee.

Monday, January 23, 2017

CWA Diamond Dagger Recipient Announced

I was very pleased to receive the following press release over the weekend, embargoed until today:

Ann Cleeves to receive CWA Diamond Dagger

The Crime Writers’ Association (CWA) is delighted to announce that Ann Cleeves is to receive the CWA Diamond Dagger, the highest honour in British crime writing. The Dagger award recognises authors whose crime writing careers have been marked by sustained excellence, and who have made a significant contribution to the genre.

Martin Edwards, Chair of the CWA, said: ‘Ann Cleeves is internationally renowned as the author of the series on which the very popular TV programmes Vera and Shetland are based. But long before her television success, she worked hard writing hugely enjoyable crime novels and short stories. As well as publishing thirty books, she has been a passionate and effective advocate for libraries, while her generosity towards fellow crime writers as well as readers means that this news is sure to be widely welcomed.’

Ann Cleeves said: ‘It’s a huge honour to be recognized by my peers, the crime-writers whose books, friendship and support I’ve enjoyed for more than thirty years. I am privileged to have had such a happy career and I will always be grateful for the support of booksellers and forever indebted to the passion and expertise of librarians, without whom I wouldn't still be writing today.'

A Sunday Times bestseller, Ann has written 30 novels and is translated into as many languages. Before her writing career took off, Ann worked as a probation officer, bird observatory cook and auxiliary coastguard. In 2015, Ann chaired the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival, during which Vera was voted the UK’s favourite fictional detective. Also in 2015, Thin Air was nominated for the Scottish Crime Novel of the Year and Ann was shortlisted for the CWA Dagger in the Library award. In 2006, Cleeves’ novel, Raven Black, was awarded the Duncan Lawrie Dagger (the prestigious CWA Gold Dagger) for Best Crime Novel, and in 2012, she was inducted into the CWA Crime Thriller Awards Hall of Fame.

As well as fiction, Ann has written a non-fiction title about Shetland and, in November 2015, she hosted the inaugural Shetland Noir festival on the Shetland Islands.

In 2016 Ann was named Queen of Village Noir, which she loved, while The Guardian named her as 'the best living evoker of landscape’. Ann holds a remarkable record: she is the only living author to have two major drama series on TV.

Ann Cleeves will be presented with the CWA Diamond Dagger at the CWA’s Dagger Awards ceremony in London on 26 October. Previous winners of the CWA Diamond Dagger include P.D. James, John Le Carre, Dick Francis, Ruth Rendell, Lee Child, and Ian Rankin.

The CWA Diamond Dagger is selected from nominations provided by CWA members. Nominees have to meet two essential criteria: first, their careers must be marked by sustained excellence, and second, they must have made a significant contribution to crime writing published in the English language. It’s clear that Ann Cleeves meets these criteria in style.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Favourite Discoveries of 2016 (I)

As per usual I have asked my fellow Euro Crime reviewers to come up with their favourite crime fiction discovery of the past year - be it book, film or tv series.

The first entry comes from Norman Price.

Norman's Favourite Discovery of 2016
The former British Prime Minister Harold MacMillan was allegedly once asked what he feared most; his answer “Events, dear boy, events”. Well we have certainly had plenty of those in 2016.

My own personal events in which I had very close encounters with some of the most expensive equipment owned by the National Health Service lead to my discovery of the pleasure of sitting through a marathon DVD session. The total immersion in a series, in this case Vera, was a great help in taking my mind off my more serious health problems.

My wife and I had both read The Moth Catcher by Ann Cleeves and really enjoyed the characters and excellent plot, with the result that we decided to get the complete DVD set and watch it over several nights. Our old DVD had broken down years ago so we purchased a basic TV and DVD player combination and settled down to watch.

Fascinating plots combined with superb acting by Brenda Blethyn and David Leon as the main protagonists Vera Stanhope and Joe Ashworth made it a pleasant way to spend our evenings together. The last series without David Leon was not quite as good because the spiky interaction between the solitary Vera and the family man Joe was missing. But I would highly recommend the DVD of Vera.

I am trying to get back to reading, but if my concentration is not up to scratch one of my presents during this festive season was the complete set of the Inspector Morse series. That should last me the rest of the dark winter nights.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Favourite Euro Crime Reads of 2016 - Laura

Here are Laura's favourite British/European/translated reads of 2016:
Laura Root's favourite reads of 2016

Lie With Me by Sabine Durrant
A classy psychological thriller.

The Missing and the Dead by Stuart MacBride
The second to most recent instalment in the hugely successful Logan McRae series.

The Glorious Heresies by Lisa McInerney
Fast, furious and bleakly funny modern Irish noir.

The Catalyst Killing by Hans Olav Lahlum tr. Kari Dickson
Takes this retro series featuring K2 and Patricia into the 1970s and the milieu of militant student politics.

Streets of Darkness by A A Dhand
A scorching Bradford-set debut.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Favourite Euro Crime Reads of 2016 - Michelle

Here are Michelle's favourite British/European/translated reads of 2016:
Michelle Peckham's favourite reads of 2016

A Deadly Thaw by Sarah Ward
A great second outing, with DC Connie Childs making an interesting detective.

The Crow Girl by Eric Axl Sund tr. Neil Smith
An intriguing and complex plot. Detective Superintendent Jeanette Kihlberg is a strong female lead.

The Maria Kallio Series, books 1-4, by Leena Lehtolainen tr. Owen Witesman
A new author to me, I’ve been reading the first four books in the series. The lead investigator, Maria always seems to be investigating murders that involve her friends, and she makes for another strong female character.

The Treatment
(Jack Caffery #2) by Mo Hayder
Having read most of the Caffery series, somehow I’d missed this one, which nicely filled in some background to the later books. Well written and plotted.

The Hanging Girl (Department Q6) Jussi Adler-Olsen tr. William Frost
I could read these books over and over. The strange cast of detectives in the basement, following up on old cases is fascinating. The book is well plotted, and completely absorbing.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Favourite Euro Crime Reads of 2016 - Lynn

Here are Lynn's favourite British/European/translated reads of 2016:
Lynn Harvey's favourite reads of 2016

Not all of these books were published in 2016, some were hunted out as being by favourite authors. All, with the exception of Wolf Winter, have been translated from their original language – so once again – here’s to the wonderful work of translators, where would our love of Euro Crime be without them.

Wolf Winter by Cecilia Ekbäck

The Arc of the Swallow by Sissel-Jo Gazan tr. Charlotte Barslund

Rage by Zygmunt Miłoszewski tr. Antonia Lloyd-Jones

The Hermit by Thomas Rydal tr. K E Semmel

The Voices Beyond by Johan Theorin tr. Marlaine Delargy

Friday, January 13, 2017

Favourite Euro Crime Reads of 2016 - Karen

Here are my favourite British/European/translated reads of 2016:
Karen Meek's favourite reads of 2016

1. British/European/Translated

In descending order, though there is not much between them!:

A Deadly Thaw by Sarah Ward
Where Roses Never Die by Gunnar Staalesen tr. Don Bartlett
The Drowned Boy by Karin Fossum tr. Kari Dickson
The Defenceless by Kati Hiekkapelto tr. David Hackston
Midnight Sun by J Nesbo tr. Neil Smith

2. Favourite Short Story

Small Wars by Lee Child

3. Favourite US Cozy

Books Can Be Deceiving by Jenn McKinlay.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Favourite Euro Crime Reads of 2016 - Ewa

Here are Ewa's favourite British/European/translated reads of 2016:
Ewa Sherman's favourite reads of 2016

Choosing my Top Five of 2016 wasn't easy, especially as I had a chance to read many amazing books. Also, I have some not-yet-read, but I already know that I’m in for a treat. So I’ve decided to concentrate on books coming from the five Scandinavian/Nordic countries. So here are my favourites.


The Vanished by Lotte and Søren Hammer (translated by Martin Aitken)
After a severe heart attack Detective Chief Superintendent Konrad Simonsen returns to the Homicide Division in Copenhagen. Instantly he is at the scene of violent shooting at school where the victim appeared to have some connection to another deceased. As Simonsen investigates the suicide of a postman, he finds evidence pointing towards murder. He also discovers possible links to the case of a missing English girl who had disappeared in 1969 after her visit to Denmark, following an encounter with six Danish students of the Lonely Hearts Club. This leads to revaluating his past when he was in love with a left-wing flower-child, and deployed to provide the ‘crowd control’ during 1970’s demonstrations. In true Nordic Noir fashion this third book by the brother and sister duo brings disturbing themes, deft characterisation and social conscience.


The Wednesday Club by Kjell Westö (translated by Neil Smith)
The Wednesday Club was founded by the decent broad-minded lawyer Claes Thune and his five friends, and it became an exclusive gentlemen’s club. As the political situation in Europe escalates in 1938, its members’ lives are threatened. Thune, recently divorced and feeling lost, employs an efficient new secretary Mrs Matilda Wiik who tries to repress painful memories of her time as a prisoner in the starvation camp during the Finnish Civil War, twenty years earlier. One day she hears a voice of her former tormentor and rapist, the silent ‘Captain’, and this time she doesn’t want to be a powerless victim. Part historical novel, part crime mystery with elegant measured prose, sophisticated language, and a truly contemporary feel though the events are firmly based in the turbulent past, Westö’s work belongs in Thomas Mann’s league.


Why Did You Lie? by Yrsa Sigurðardóttir (translated by Victoria Cribb)
Three maintenance workers and a photographer arrive by helicopter to the tiny lighthouse on a remote ocean rock. Weather turns worse and tensions soar, and a recurring dream turns real: two dead, and a third person fighting for their life.
An ordinary family returns from a house-swap holiday in Florida to find their home in disarray and their American guests missing. Noi hears strange noises, sees flashes of light and finds notes with menacing messages. His wife seems calm.
Journalist Thröstur worked on the forgotten cases of child abuse but now he’s in coma after his failed suicide attempt. His wife Nina, a police officer, clears old documents at the station where she finds possible evidence that it might have been an attempted murder. This mixture of supernatural and factual is spellbinding.


Where Roses Never Die by Gunnar Staalesen (translated by Don Bartlett)
Three years after Varg Veum’s fiancé Karin’s death his personal and professional life lies in tatters. Luckily he gets a chance to help a grieving mother in search for answers as to what had happened to her missing small daughter Mette. Bergen’s PI was approached as the expiry date for the statute of limitations draws near. The girl vanished without a trace twenty-five-years earlier from a secure garden of five houses, a close-knit community of five families whose lives fell apart shortly after the event. The original thorough investigation was fruitless. The experience as a social worker in child services makes Veum use his intuition, sensitivity, determination and often barely legal methods to bring a glimmer of hope. This is another beautifully written, complex and emotionally-charged novel from the Norwegian Chandler.


The Dying Detective by Leif G W Persson (translated by Neil Smith)
Lars Martin Johansson, the retired Chief of the National Crime Police and the Swedish Security Service, has suffered a stroke, following a life of stress, work pressure, good food and fine wine. While recovering in a hospital he meets a neurologist who provides an important piece of information about an unsolved 1985 case just as the window for prosecution expired weeks earlier. The rape and murder of a young girl destroyed her parents who had arrived as political refugees from Iran. Respected for his extremely sharp mind Johansson becomes obsessed with finding the truth and enlists help of family members, two carers and old colleagues. Dark humour and perceptive observations punctuate this hugely intelligent and inquisitive novel from the renowned Scandinavian criminologist and psychological profiler.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Favourite Euro Crime Reads of 2016 - Mark

Here are Mark's favourite British/European/translated reads of 2016:
Mark Bailey's favourite reads of 2016

In alphabetical order by author:

The Woman in Blue by Elly Griffiths
Personally, I am a big fan of the Ruth Galloway novels but should warn you that this is best enjoyed if you are following the series through in order but I still do think you can pick up most of the background needed to enjoy the novel as you go along. There is the usual excellent characterisation that one expects in Elly Griffiths’ books that gives you believable albeit flawed but ultimately likeable ongoing main protagonists (Ruth Galloway, Harry Nelson and Cathbad especially in this one) along with a sufficiently twisty plot to keep you engaged and a well-researched backdrop to hang the story on.
If you have a liking for modern cozies with a hint of grit than I would strongly recommend this to you.

Closed Casket by Sophie Hannah
This gets in as a most improved series as my issues with The Monogram Murders have been partly addressed. Edward Catchpool is now a much more rounded character who is a friend to Poirot – speaking of which the fussy Poirot we know and love is back which may be due in part to the Country House milieu of this novel and the book is a bit tighter which might be due to it being shorter (I reckon it is about 6% shorter). The plot still does rely however on Poirot making some leaps of logic that are perhaps a teensy bit heroic if one is being kind. I am optimistic that similar improvements on a third Poirot book by Sophie Hannah will get it into my Top 5 purely on merit.

Rain Dogs (Sean Duffy 5) by Adrian McKinty
Technically this was published in the UK in very late 2015 but January is Sean Duffy reading time for me (number six is being read at the moment). Again this a very assured police procedural with multiple serious themes (the peace process is still in the background, economic regeneration is in the middle and a political cover up in the foreground) and great writing which is strongly literate but still keeps you engaged and turning the page.

Rather Be the Devil by Ian Rankin
Rebus is back in his twenty-first novel appearance and is retired once again and his memories are turning to past events – one of those is a murder in the Caledonian Hotel forty years ago.
It is an utterly compelling and gripping read which I read worryingly quickly as you get engrossed in the book by both the characters and the plot lines. The ending does set up the series for more novels very nicely.

Then She Was Gone by Luca Veste
This is the fifth in the Murphy and Rossi police procedural series set in Liverpool.
They are investigating the disappearance of a politician which turns into a serial killer case with political underpinnings. This is a tight well written novel with strong well drawn characters which grabs your attention and keeps you turning the page (or clicking the Kindle).

Monday, January 09, 2017

Favourite Euro Crime Reads of 2016 - Terry

Terry's favourite British/European/translated reads of 2016 happen to all be historicals this year:
Terry Halligan's favourite reads of 2016

1. By Gaslight by Steven Price
A hunt for a mysterious murderer in mid-nineteenth century London by the son of the founder of the Pinkerton Detective Agency.

2. Bretherton: Khaki Or Field Grey? by W F Morris
A very thrilling and historically accurate story about a double agent in World War I originally published in the 1920s.

3. Queen's Accomplice: A Maggie Hope Mystery by Susan Elia MacNeal
An American agent in war-time London enlists the help of the Queen to help stop a German agent leaving.

4. Journey To Munich by Jacqueline Winspear
Maisie Dobbs is sent to Munich to rescue someone from a concentration camp.

5. The Lone Warrior by P F Collard
How his protagonist Jack Lark gets involved in the Indian Mutiny in 1857.

Sunday, January 08, 2017

Favourite Euro Crime Reads of 2016 - Norman

I'm very pleased to welcome Norman back to Euro Crime and we'll hear more from him when I reveal his favourite discovery of 2016. But first, his favourite British/European/translated reads of 2016:
Norman Price's favourite reads of 2016

Here are my top five in no particular order:

The Moth Catcher by Ann Cleeves
Stasi Child by David Young
The Dying Detective by Leif G W Persson tr. Neil Smith
The Caveman by Jorn Lier Horst tr. Anne Bruce
Real Tigers by Mick Herron

These five outstanding books, a mixture of crime and spy fiction, had the basics of all good fiction, great characters, interesting plots and a sense of place.

Friday, January 06, 2017

Favourite Euro Crime Reads of 2016 - Geoff

It's Geoff's turn to reveal his favourite British/European/translated reads of 2016.

Geoff Jones's favourite reads of 2016

In Bitter Chill by Sarah Ward
Death Ship by Jim Kelly
Mercy Killing by Lisa Cutts
Ordeal by Jorn Lier Horst tr. Anne Bruce
Death's Privilege by Darryl Donaghue

Geoff also writes: The Disappearance written by Annabel Kantaria was going to be my fifth choice, but I wasn't sure that it was a crime book, although it contains a missing person, was she killed or was it suicide? A good book, this is the second by this author both of which are excellent.

Thursday, January 05, 2017

Favourite Euro Crime Reads of 2016 - Amanda

As promised here are the Euro Crime reviewers' favourite European/translated reads of 2016. I'll be posting individual lists to begin with, followed by the usual summary post.

Amanda Gillies's favourite reads of 2016

My top five reads for this year, in order of preference, are:

1) His Bloody Project by Graeme Macrae Burnet
2) A Suitable Lie by Michael Malone
3) The Passenger by F R Tallis
4) All the Devils by Neil Broadfoot
5) Murderabilia by Craig Robertson

Each year it gets harder to choose, but every so often a book stands out and is impossible to forget. Such is my Number One for this year - a real cracker of a tale that was, deservedly, shortlisted for the Man Booker prize. Many thanks to Karen for having me in her team for another year. Reviewing books for Euro Crime is one of my greatest pleasures.

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Some 1959 Titles (for Past Offences)

The latest monthly challenge over at Past Offences is to read a book in January, published in 1959. Here are some British/European crime titles to choose from, first published in English in 1959, pulled from my database. This information is correct to the best of my knowledge however please do double check dates before spending any cash!:
Josephine Bell - The House above the River
John Bingham - Five Roundabouts to Heaven
Gwendoline Butler - The Interloper
Agatha Christie - Cat Among the Pigeons
Friedrich Durrenmatt - The Pledge
Margaret Erskine - A Graveyard Plot
Ian Fleming - Goldfinger
Menna Gallie - Strike for a Kingdom
Graham Hastings - Twice Checked
Alan Hunter - Gently in the Sun
M M Kaye - Death in Zanzibar (revised 1983) (originally published as The House of Shade)
H R F Keating - Death and the Visiting Firemen
Osmington Mills - Stairway to Murder
Ellis Peters - Death Mask
Georges Simenon - Maigret Has Doubts
Georges Simenon - Maigret and the Reluctant Witnesses
Georges Simenon - The Widower
Georges Simenon - The Grandmother
Margaret Yorke - Christopher
There are more suggestions in the comments on the Past Offences page.

Tuesday, January 03, 2017

New Releases - January 2017

Sorry for the delay in posting this. Minor illnesses and what-not have got in the way :(.
Over the next couple of weeks, I'll be posting the Euro Crime reviewers' top 5 reads of 2016 and their new discoveries of 2016.

So, here's a snapshot of what I think is published for the first time in January 2017 (and is usually a UK date but occasionally will be a US or Australian date). January and future months (and years) can be found on the Future Releases page. If I've missed anything do please leave a comment.
• Ahnhem, Stefan - The Ninth Grave #2 Fabian Risk
• Airth, Rennie - The Death of Kings #5 John Madden, Scotland Yard Policeman, Southern Counties, early 20th Century
• Camilleri, Andrea - A Nest of Vipers #21 Inspector Montalbano, Sicily, Italy
• Carver, CJ - Tell Me A Lie #2 Dan Forrester
• Chirovici, E O - The Book of Mirrors
• Cross, A J - A Little Death #3 Dr Kate Hanson, forensic psychologist, West Midlands
• Cummins, Fiona - Rattle
• Daly, Paula - The Trophy Child
• Dawson, Lucy - Everything You Told Me
• Dazieri, Sandrone - Kill the Father #1 Colomba Caselli and Dante Torre
• Deering, Julianna - Murder on the Moor #5 Drew Farthering, 1930s England
• Delaney, J P - The Girl Before
• Dolan, Eva - Watch Her Disappear #4 DI Zigic and DS Ferreira, Peterborough
• Eldridge, Jim - Shadows of the Dead #2 DCI Paul Stark, London, 1920s
• Elgar, Emily - If You Knew Her
• Fforde, Jasper - Early Riser
• Grant, Andrew - False Friend #3 Cooper Devereaux
• Gregory, Susanna - The Executioner of St Paul's #12 Thomas Chaloner, Restoration London
• Hall, M R/Matthew - A Life to Kill #7 Jenny Cooper, Severn Vale District Coroner
• Heller, Mandasue - Run
• Hingley, David - Puritan #2 Mercia Blakewood
• Holt, Anne - What Dark Clouds Hide #5 Former FBI profiler Johanne Vik & Detective Inspector Adam Stubo, Norway
• James, Bill - Close #34 DCS Harpur and ACC Iles
• Jonasson, Ragnar - Rupture #3 Ari Thor, Policeman
• Kernick, Simon - The Bone Field #2 DI Ray Mason
• Knox, Joseph - Sirens
• Koutsakis, Pol - Athenian Blues #1 Stratos Gazis
• Land, Ali - Good Me Bad Me
• Leather, Stephen - Takedown
• Magson, Adrian - Dark Asset #4 Marc Portman
• Mark, David - Cruel Mercy #6 Detective Sergeant McAvoy of Humberside CID
• May, Peter - Cast Iron #6 Enzo Macleod, Biologist, Toulouse
• McKinty, Adrian - Police at the Station and They Don't Look Friendly #6 Sean Duffy
• Myers, Amy - Dancing with Death #1 Nell Drury, chef-sleuth, 1920s
• Nadel, Barbara - The House of Four #19 Cetin Ikmen, Policeman, Istanbul
• Peacock, Caro - Fool's Gold #8 Liberty Lane, Victorian Era
• Pinborough, Sarah - Behind Her Eyes
• Raybourn, Deanna - A Perilous Undertaking #2 Veronica Speedwell, adventuress and butterfly hunter, Victorian London
• Rickman, Phil - All of a Winter's Night #1 Rev. Merrily Watkins, Ledwardine, Herefordshire
• Sansom, Ian - Essex Poison #4 The County Guides to Murder
• Seymour, Gerald - Jericho's War
• Steinhauer, Olen - The Middleman
• Welsh, Louise - No Dominion #3 Plague Times Trilogy
• Woodhouse, Jake - Before the Dawn #3 Inspector Jaap Rykel, Amsterdam
• Wright, A J - Elementary Murder #3 Detective Sergeant Brennan, Wigan, 1890s