Two young boys stumble on a dead prostitute. She's on Sean Denton's patch. As Doncaster's youngest community support officer, he's already way out of his death, but soon he's uncovering more than he's supposed to know. Meanwhile Karen Friedman, professional mother of two, learns her brother has disappeared. She desperately needs to know he's safe, but once she starts looking, she discovers unexpected things about her own needs and desires. Played out against a gritty landscape on the edge of a Northern town, Karen and Sean risk losing all they hold precious. To Catch a Rabbit is by Helen Cadbury and is due to be published in January 2015. Read SHOTS' review here.
Death Wears a Mask is by Ashley Weaver and is due to be published in June 2015. Amory Ames is investigating the disappearance of valuable jewellery snatched at a dinner party and lays a trap to catch the culprit at a lavish masked ball hosted by the notorious Viscount Dunmore. She wasn’t expecting one of the illustrious party guests to wind up dead . . .
Sussex, 1925. Sherlock Holmes and Mary Russell find a beautiful stone belonging to the future emperor of Japan – mysteriously left in their garden. There’s some unfinished business they need to clear up. From the winding lanes of Oxford to the palaces of Japan, the ingenious duo embark on an utterly compelling adventure of politics and espionage. Dreaming Spies is by Laurie R King and is due to be published in February 2015.
Spring, 1932. Four years after she set sail from England, leaving everything she most loved behind, Maisie Dobbs at last returns, only to find herself in a dangerous place. En route to England a brutal murder in Gibraltar leads Maisie into a web of lies, deceit and peril. A Dangerous Place is by Jacqueline Winspear and is due to be published in April 2015.
What’s an editor to do with so many demands? Do you deal with the morning’s pile of manuscript submissions first? Or the swine from sales who steals all the chocolate digestives? Or do you concentrate on your ex-lover, whose business partner has just been found dead, slumped over his desk with a gun in his hand? Sam takes on the art world with a handy reserve of satire and irrelevant information culled from books. Boxing Day. A dead body has been found in the chemistry department of Queen's University in West London. Tom Chambers, the head of department, was known to have a bad heart, and had it not been Christmas, no questions would have been asked. What was a procedural post mortem soon turns into a murder investigation when it becomes evident Chambers had been injected with a dangerous amount of digitalin. A Bed of Scorpions is by Judith Flanders and is due to be published in February 2015.
The Red House is by Emily Winslow and is due to be published in February 2015. Maxwell is living his worst nightmare when he begins to question whether his fiancee Imogen is his own blood sister, separated by adoption. A visit to Imogen's birthplace in Cambridge stirs up deja vu that intensifies his fears.While Detective Chief Inspector Morris Keene languishes at home, struggling with a debilitating injury and post-traumatic stress, his former partner Detective Inspector Chloe Frohmann is following a suicide case in which Morris' daughter Dora is suspected of assisting the death. When buried skeletons are discovered next to an old barn, the suicide is linked back to Imogen's childhood, revealing horrors of the past and new dangers in the present.
Thea Osborne, Cotswold house-sitter with an infamous reputation for getting mixed up in crime, is determined to avoid trouble this time. Her latest commission in the village of Daglingworth seems straightforward, with most of her time spent looking after an old corgi and a hibernating tortoise. Thea is ready for a relaxing if rather boring two weeks, with phone calls to new boyfriend Drew Slocombe the highlight of her days. Until, that is, a dead body is discovered in a nearby quarry... Revenge in the Cotswolds is by Rebecca Tope and is due to be published in March 2015.
The Venetian Venture is by Suzette Hill and is due to be published in January 2015. 1954, Venice. For Rosy Gilchrist the tables may have turned. Her boss at the British Museum, Dr Stanley, has chosen her to travel to Venice, track down a rare edition of Horace's Odes and bring it back for their collection. Rosy jumps at the chance to spend time away from her capricious supervisor and hopefully indulge in a little Venetian culture. Following Dr Stanley's advice, she roams the cobbled streets of Venice in search of the book and crosses paths with old friends Felix Smythe and Cedric Dillworthy. With their help, Rosy thinks she's laid her hands on the treasure but things soon take a drastic downward spiral. A wealthy and eccentric recluse offers a GBP1 million reward for anyone who can find Horace's Odes and pair it with a missing Murano vase. The price on the book's head brings all sorts of murky characters out of the shadows. Soon Rosy finds herself in a race against time as her rivals will go to any lengths to secure the prize ... even murder.
The Third Sin is by Aline Templeton and is due to be published in March 2015. Pleasure is the highest good: the group who called themselves the Cyrenaics practised the principle until the death of one from an overdose and the apparent suicide of another. Sobered, the group went their several ways. One heads to Canada, another disappears and a third is believed to have committed suicide, at least until his body turns up two years later in the wreck of a car swept up on to the Solway mud flats. The murky relationships among the Cyrenaics, revived when they start returning for a party bring more pain and death. DI Marjory Fleming finds this and the murder which follows on her own patch, obstructed by the unpleasant and resentful inspector she has been asked to direct, and DC Hepburn and DS Macdonald, still at loggerheads, don't make it any easier. Fleming's daughter has a new boyfriend and though Cammie at last achieves his Scotland cap, he too is in trouble with the affairs of the heart.
1815. Peter and Paul Skillen, identical twins and fearless thief-catchers, stalk all who dare towalk in the shadow of the hangman. When they catch a notorious burglar, they claim a handsome reward and infuriate the Bow Street Runners who believe they have a monopoly on policing in the capital. Home Secretary Viscount Sidmouth faces a crisis. During a massacre of American prisoners-of-war at Dartmoor, two escape and come to London in search of retribution – and if their demands are not met, they’ll kill Sidmouth. The Runners compete fiercely with the twin detectives to bring the villains to justice in a compelling tale of murder, kidnap, revenge and political machination. Shadow of the Hangman is by Edward Marston and is due to be published in February 2015. It is the first in the Bow Street Rivals series.
A huge funeral for Windermere's popular resident, Barbara Dodge, is taking place and florist Persimmon 'Simmy' Brown and her new assistant, Bonnie Lawson are busy compiling wreaths in preparation. There's word of a series of sinister dognappings occurring in nearby Troutbeck and whilst taking a walk up Wansfell Pike, Simmy and her father, Russell, stumble on a dog, strangled to death - it's not long before Simmy reluctantly finds herself caught up in a murder investigation. The Troutbeck Testimony is by Rebecca Tope and is due to be published in May 2015.
When Monsieur Pamplemousse is summoned into the head office of Le Guide by the director, Henri Leclercq, he is unaware of the chaos that is about to erupt. Accompanied by his faithful bloodhound, Pommes Frites, Pamplemousse attempts to solve Leclercq's plaintive conundrums - all of which relate back to his mobster uncle-in-law. The crime-solving duo gallivant around Paris and become tangled up in seemingly arbitrary problems; a letter about a juicy steak horrifyingly turned into a brisket; a dead restaurant owner; a giant truffle delivered by post and the imminent arrival of the vivacious Caterina, the mobster's niece. With all these obstacles at hand, Pamplemousse attempts to unravel each dilemma but it quickly proves impossible as they overlap and tangle at every turn. As he battles with this confounding case, it becomes apparent that these events are much more sinister and inextricably linked than first thought ... Monsieur Pamplemousse and the Tangled Web is by Michael Bond and is due to be published in March 2015.
Sixth century Constantinople. Flavius Belisarius is barely eighteen and is alreadycommander of the cavalry patrolling the Persian frontier. A brilliant soldier but a poor schemer - Flavius needs to be both in order to survive the febrile politics of the Eastern Roman Empire. When his friend, Petrus Sabbatius uses trickery to elevate himself to the position of co-Emperor, Flavius finds himself embroiled in an explosive venture of machinations and warfare. The brave general must battle against the deadly Sassanids and protect the co-Emperor from his own subjects who are out for blood. As the valiant leader sets out to re-conquer the Western Empire from the hands of the Vandals and Ostrogoths, Flavius is unaware that his wife, joining him on the campaign, is secretly charged to spy on him. Honour is the second instalment in the brutal Roman trilogy. Only the most merciless traitors prevail in a volatile land where one wrong step will cost you your head. The Last Roman: Honour is by Jack Ludlow and is due to be published in January 2015.