The Sticklepath Strangler by Michael Jecks

‘The Sticklepath Strangler’ is the 12th novel in the Knights Templar series by Michael Jecks which features ex Templar Knight and now Keeper of the kings Peace Sir Baldwin Furnshill and Bailiff Simon Puttock.

Two ten year old girls in the Devon town of Sticklepath have just discovered a skull. And with a traveller passing through the town, the discovery has been reported to the authorities. When the Coroner, Roger deGidleigh arrives with Baldwin and Simon, they find that not all suspicious deaths have been reported.

Several years ago, a young girl was murdered and her body cannibalised. The villagers were certain that they knew the identity of the vampire and killed him, removing his heart and burning his body. But the killings have continued and the villages not only have to contend with a murderer in their midst but the guilt over killing an innocent man. Continue reading

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The Funeral Boat by Kate Ellis

‘The Funeral Boat’ is the 4th novel in the Wesley Peterson series by Kate Ellis

DS Wesley Peterson and DI Gerry Heffernan are having a busy summer. There are tourists everywhere and a corresponding increase in crime. One tourist in the area, a Danish lady named Ingeborg Larsen has gone missing and there is evidence to suggest that she has been kidnapped. When her brother arrives from Denmark to help with the search he is murdered. What is the secret that the siblings have been keeping from the police?

The police are also trying to track a group of armed robbers who have been attacking remote farms and stealing cars and valuables. Now one of the local farmers has been shot by the robbers. Continue reading

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The Silent Room by Mari Hannah

‘The Silent Room’ is the first novel in Mari Hannah’s series featuring DS Matthew Ryan and DI Eloise O’Neil.

DS Ryan and his boss DI Jack Fenwick were more than colleagues in Special Branch, they were also close friends. So Ryan was shocked when Jack was found in possession of illegal firearms. Then as Jack was being transferred to Durham prison after an unsuccessful bail application, the van was hijacked. The Internal Affairs investigation, led by DI Eloise O’Neil, assumes that Jack Fenwick is on the run and that Ryan assisted him in his escape.

Suspended and without a warrant card, Ryan sets out to prove that Jack is innocent, not only of escaping, but also of possessing stolen firearms. He believes that the firearms were planted before an Internal Affairs tip-off and that Jack has been kidnapped and is now in danger. His task is made more difficult by O’Neil’s offsider DS John Maguire who delights in bringing down colleagues – guilty or not and has especially targeted Ryan. Continue reading

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Abir Mukherjee Profile and Books

Abir Mukherjee was born in London in 1974 and grew up in Western Scotland. His parents were born in Calcutta in India and immigrated to the UK.

Mukherjee is a qualified accountant and worked in Finance in London for many years. It wasn’t till he was in his later 30s that he finally began work on his first novel. With a full-time job and two young children, finding the time to write was a challenge.

He was fascinated by the history of India and Calcutta in particular in the 1920s. Apart from visiting Calcutta, he has been able to get information from family members and family friends on life in Calcutta before Indian independence. Continue reading

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The Tournament of Blood by Michael Jecks

‘The Tournament of Blood’ is the 11th novel in the Knights Templar mysteries by Michael Jecks.

The story begins when Sir Baldwin Furnshill’s wife Jeanne gives birth to their first child – a girl. So with a bellowing newborn in the house, Baldwin is happy to escape. Lord Hugh de Courtenay is hosting a tournament with Simon Puttock organising the details.

The novel contains a lot of details about medieval tournaments which were designed to keep knights and squires in training. They were also a great source of entertainment and a profitable time for local traders and for money lenders who funded knights when they forfeited property on losing a fight. Continue reading

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In The Morning I’ll Be Gone by Adrian McKinty

‘In The Morning I’ll Be Gone’ is the 3rd novel in Adrian McKinty’s Sean Duffy series.

Duffy has upset his senior officers and been demoted from Detective Inspector to Sergeant before being forced out of the police force completely.

That is until MI5 discover that Duffy is an old school friend of Dermot McCann. McCann is an IRA terrorist who was part of a mass prison escape. He and a number of others are still on the run and have been training in Libya. MI5 believe that Duffy’s knowledge of McCann and his family can help them, so Duffy negotiates a reinstatement as Detective Inspector. Continue reading

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All The Wicked Girls by Chris Whitaker

‘All The Wicked Girls’ is the 2nd novel by Chris Whitaker and is as good as his first ‘Tall Oaks’. The story is set in the small town of Grace in Alabama and the small Southern town feel comes through in the story.

Summer and Raine are 15 year old twin girls. Summer is the good studious one who everyone loves while Raine is the rebellious one, flaunting her sexuality and breaking all the rules. Then Summer goes missing. There have been several other missing girls in surrounding towns, so Raine doesn’t feel that the local policeman Black is doing enough and starts her own search. Raine is aided by two local boys, Noah and Purv who are not part of the cool set, but who certainly steal the show. Continue reading

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The Tenderness of Wolves by Stef Penney

‘The Tenderness of Wolves’ was Stef Penney’s debut novel and like her other novels is beautifully and warmly written.

The story is set in 1867 in the sparsely populated and cold areas of Northern Canada. At the time, the Hudson Bay Company was the main driver of the fur trade in the area.

In the small town of Caulfield, a trapper and ex company man Laurent Jannett is brutally murdered. The body is discovered by a neighbour – Mrs Ross. She is particularly worried that her 17 Year old son Francis has been missing since around the time of the murder. Continue reading

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The Vanishing Box by Elly Griffiths

‘The Vanishing Box’ is the 4th novel in Elly Griffiths’ series featuring DI Edgar Stephens and Magician Max Mephisto. The series is set in Brighton in the 1950s.

It is a cold Christmas and Max and his daughter Ruby are performing together in a magic act. They are the main act in a show at the Brighton Hippodrome. Another act in the show is the living tableau where young, barely clad women enact scenes from history as living statues. The Tableau act is run by the unpleasant businessman Vic Cutler.

But DI Edgar Stephens is too busy for the show and too busy for his fiancé Ruby because he has another murder to investigate. A young woman who worked in a flower shop has been murdered in her bedroom in a boarding house. Her body has been posed to resemble a painting of a famous historical event.  But does this murder have anything to do with Vic Cutler and his tableau act? Continue reading

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The Distant Echo by Val McDermid

‘The Distant Echo’ is the novel where we are first introduced to DI Karen Pirie, but she doesn’t appear until well into the story.

In 1978, Alex Gilbey and his three best friends, all four from Kirkcaldy are studying in St Andrews. After a night of drinking and partying, they stumble across Rosie Duff lying in the snow, raped, stabbed and barely alive. By the time they have summoned help she is dead.

The four young men are the only suspects in Rosie’s murder and the suspicion follows them from that day on. But there has never been enough evidence to charge any of them. Continue reading

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