Monday, 15 June 2015

Books to Look Forward to from Orion

When Elmore Leonard died in 2013, he left behind a 60-year legacy of crime novels, many of which have become modern classics. He also left behind a treasure trove of unpublished early stories. Largely written during his years as a copywriter at a Detroit advertising agency, these stories find Leonard exploring far-flung locations, from the bars of small-town New Mexico to a military base in Kuala Lumpur. They also introduce us to unforgettable Leonard characters, some of whom - like ageing lawman Charlie Martz and former matador Eladio Montoya - star in his other works but were born in these pages. Whether embodying an extra on a movie set in Spain or a desperate man out for vengeance in Detroit, these stories are endlessly entertaining - revealing a master who honed his craft from a young age. Charlie Martz and Other Stories: The Unpublished Stories of Elmore Leonard is due to be published in June 2015.

The Hanging Tree was the Tyburn Gallows which stood where Marble Arch stands today. Oxford Street was the last trip of the condemned. Somethings don't change. The place has a bloody and haunted legacy and now blood has returned to the empty Mayfair mansions of the world's super-rich. And blood mixed with magic is a job for Peter Grant. Peter Grant is back as are Nightingale et al at the Folly and the various river gods, ghosts and spirits who attach themselves to England's last wizard and the Met's reluctant investigator of all things supernatural.  The Hanging Tree is by Ben Aaronovitch and is due to be published in November 2015.

The Devil’s Daughter is by Diana Bretherick and is due to be published in August 2015. 1888. When young Scottish scientist James Murray receives a letter from Sofia Esposito, a woman he once loved and lost, he cannot refuse her cry for help. Sofia's fifteen-year-old cousin has vanished but, because of her lower-class status, the police are unwilling to investigate. Accompanied by his younger sister Lucy, Murray returns to the city of Turin where he was once apprenticed to the world-famous criminologist, Cesare Lombroso. As he embarks on his search for the missing girl, Murray uncovers a series of mysterious disappearances of young women and rumours of a haunted abbey on the outskirts of the city. When the body of one of the girls turns up bearing evidence of a satanic ritual, Murray begins to slot together the pieces of the puzzle. But as two more bodies are discovered, fear grips the city and a desperate hunt begins to find a truly terrifying killer before he claims his next victim. 

The morning it all started, newspaper reporter David Harwood had plenty to worry about. A single parent with no job, forced to return with his young son to the small town of Promise Falls to live with his parents, the future wasn't looking too rosy. So when his mother asked him to look in on his cousin Marla, who was still not quite right after losing her baby, it was almost a relief to put the disaster his own life had become to one side. The relief wouldn't last long. When he gets to Marla's house he's disturbed to find a smear of blood on the front door. He's even more disturbed to find Marla nursing a baby, a baby she claims was delivered to her 'by an angel.' And when, soon after, a woman's body is discovered across town, stabbed to death, with her own baby missing, it looks as if Marla has done something truly terrible. But while the evidence seems overwhelming, David just can't believe that his cousin is a murderer. In which case, who did kill Rosemary Gaynor? And why did they then take her baby and give it to Marla? With the police convinced they have an open and shut case, it's up to David to find out what really happened, but he soon discovers that the truth could be even more disturbing...  Broken Promise is by Linwood Barclay and is due to be published in September 2015.

Six months ago, Harry Bosch left the LAPD before they could fire him, and then hired
maverick Defense Attorney Mickey Haller to sue the department for forcing him out. Although it wasn't the way he wanted to go, Harry has to admit that being out of the game has its benefits. Until Mickey asks him to help on one of his cases, and suddenly Harry is back where he belongs, right in the centre of a particularly puzzling murder mystery. The difference is, this time Harry is working for the defense, aiming to prevent the accused, Leland Foster, from being convicted. And not only does the prosecution seem to have a cast-iron case, but having crossed over to 'the dark side' as his former colleagues would put it, Harry is in danger of betraying the very principles he's lived by his whole career.  The Crossing is by Michael Connelly and is due to be published in October 2015.

This Thing of Darkness is by Harry Bingham and is due to be published in July 2015.  A marine engineer who tumbles off a cliff path on a windy night. A burglary where everything taken was returned by the thief. The suicide of a man in love with life. An accident, a mystery, an unexplained tragedy. And nothing at all to connect them. Until, that is, Detective Constable Fiona Griffiths, searching for something - anything - to take her mind off the tedious job of evidence-cataloguing she's been assigned to, starts to wonder if all three incidents are not quite what they seem. It could just be her imagination. After all, she'd be the first to admit that she isn't exactly in the prime of psychological health right now, the darkness she's held at bay ever since she joined the police force now lapping dangerously at her door. But something tells her there are invisible threads linking the crimes, and as she investigates further, she starts to see the outlines of a conspiracy so unlikely and on such a vast scale, that it takes her breath away. And that's when they come for her.

A Kovac and Liska novel, we return to Minneapolis and Detective Sam Kovac and his wisecracking partner, Nikki Liska. This devastating thrill-ride of a crime novel finds its roots in a cold case – but it soon becomes clear that with some crimes, the past is never dead and buried.   The Bitter Season is by Tami Hoag and is due to be published in January 2016.  It is a novel about how the events of the past cause an inescapable ripple effect that impacts the present and the future – even when we go to great lengths to distance ourselves from them, and even when we can’t see those ripples coming.

The hardest crimes to acknowledge are your own...Charlie Matheson died two years ago in a car accident. So how is a woman bearing a startling resemblance to her claiming to be back from the dead? Detective Mark Nelson is called in to investigate and hear her terrifying account of what she's been through in the afterlife. Every year Detective David Groves receives a birthday card for his son...even though he buried him years ago. His son's murder took everything from him, apart from his belief in the law, even though the killers were never found. This year, though, the card bears a different message: I know who did it. Uncovering the facts will lead them all on a dark journey, where they must face their own wrongs as well as those done to those they love. It will take them to a place where justice is a game, and punishments are severe. Nelson and Groves know the answers lie with the kind of people you want to turn and run from. But if they're to get to the truth, first they'll have to go through hell... I Know Who Did It is by Steve Mosby and is due to be published in September 2015.

When the mutilated body of a young woman is discovered in the Santa Monica Mountains, LAPD Detective Jessica Allen knows she's seen this MO before - two and a half years ago on the other side of the country. A sadistic serial killer has been operating undetected for a decade, preying on lone female drivers who have broken down. The press dub the killer 'the Samaritan', but with no leads and a killer who leaves no traces, the police investigation quickly grinds to a halt. That's when Carter Blake shows up to volunteer his services. He's a skilled manhunter with an uncanny ability to predict the Samaritan's next moves. At first, Allen and her colleagues are suspicious. After all, their new ally shares some uncomfortable similarities to the man they're tracking. But as the Samaritan takes his slaughter to the next level, Blake must find a way to stop him ...even if it means bringing his own past crashing down on top of him.  The Samaritan is by Mason Cross and is due to be published in July 2015.

Everyone thought we were dead. We were missing for nearly two months; we were twelve. What else could they think? - Lois. It's always been hard to talk about what happened without sounding all melodramatic...Actually, I haven't mentioned it for years, not to a goddamned person. - Carly May. When precocious Lois and pretty Carly May were twelve years old, they were kidnapped, driven across the country, and held in an Adirondack hunting lodge for two months. Maggie Mitchell's spellbinding debut Pretty Is is about the repercussions of that formative summer, when two girls who previously did not know each other shared an experience that would shape all their days to come. At the novel's start, Lois Lonsdale has begun teaching British literature at a small college in upstate New York. Out in LA, Chloe Savage (formerly Carly May) is a lonely actress, drinking too much and struggling to revive her career. When a movie script with a shockingly familiar plot comes into their lives, the women must grapple with unresolved losses and gains that have lain hidden for years behind the public's feverish presumptions.  Pretty Is is due to be published in July 2015.

Dr. Caleb Maddox is a crack San Francisco toxicologist leading a ground-breaking study of the human pain threshold based on minute analysis of chemical markers. He has also just broken up with his artist girlfriend after she discovered a shocking family secret in his past. Seeking solace, Caleb finds a dark, old-fashioned saloon called House of Shields, and is mesmerized when a beautiful woman materializes out of the shadows, dressed like a 1940s movie star. The enigmatic Emmeline shares a pouring of absinthe with him, brushes his arm and vanishes. As he pursues her through the brooding, night-time city, desperate to see her again, he simultaneously becomes entangled in a serial murder investigation that has the police stymied - men gone missing, fished out of the bay, with no clue as to how they met their end - until Caleb's analysis of the chemical markers in their bodies reveals that each one was tortured to death. Also present are some of the key components of absinthe. As Caleb finally looks forward to a night spent alone with Emmeline, part of his mind wonders if behind the seductive vision is something utterly terrifying...  The Poison Artist is by Jonathan Moore and is due to be published in January 2015.

Hands in his pockets, Rebus turned to face Cafferty. They were old men now, similar builds, similar backgrounds. Sat together in a pub, the casual onlooker might mistake them for pals who'd known one another since school. But their history told a different story. Retirement doesn't suit John Rebus. He wasn't made for hobbies, holidays or home improvements. Being a cop is in his blood. So when DI Siobhan Clarke asks for his help on a case, Rebus doesn't need long to consider his options. Clarke's been investigating the death of a senior lawyer whose body was found along with a threatening note. On the other side of Edinburgh, Big Ger Cafferty - Rebus's long-time nemesis - has received an identical note and a bullet through his window. Now it's up to Clarke and Rebus to connect the dots and stop a killer. Meanwhile, DI Malcolm Fox joins forces with a covert team from Glasgow who are tailing a notorious crime family. There's something they want, and they'll stop at nothing to get it. It's a game of dog eat dog - in the city, as in the wild. Even Dogs in the Wild is due to be published in November 2015 and brings back Ian Rankin's greatest characters in a story exploring the darkest corners of our instincts and desires.

Dexter has finally been caught and brought to justice - for three murders he didn't commit. Proving his innocence is made quite difficult by the fact that the true killer, Robert Chase, is one of the 'victims' he's accused of murdering. To make matters worse, Dexter's once loyal sister Deborah disowns him and adamantly refuses to help with his investigation. Furious but undeterred, Dexter connects Chase to a resort with a dark underbelly. When the resort becomes aware of his discoveries, children of the police force begin disappearing. Deborah is made lead investigating officer and still refuses to return to Dexter. However, when the kidnappers take both Dexter's and her own children, she has no option but to beg for his help. Dexter triumphantly agrees, and the hunt begins... Dexter Is Dead is by Jeff Lindsay and is due to be published in July 2015.  It is the definitive conclusion of the character who has become a global icon.

Blood, Salt, Water is by Denise Mina and is due to be published in July 2015. Salt water lifts blood. Only salt water. Loch Lomond is a mile deep but the woman's body surfaced anyway. Found bludgeoned and dumped in the water, she now haunts Iain Fraser, the man who put her there. She trusted him and now that misplaced trust is gnawing through Iain's chest. He thinks it will kill him. Nearby Helensburgh is an idyllic Victorian town. One-time home to a quarter of all the millionaires in Britain, it is quaint, sleepy and chocolate-box pretty. But the real town is shot through with deception, lies and vested interests. As tensions rise and the police seek a killer, the conflicts that lurk beneath Helensburgh's calm waters threaten to explode. All Iain Fraser has to do is keep on lying.

DS Jimmy Suttle is called to a brutal murder in the picturesque Devon village of Lympstone. Harriet Reilly, a local GP, has been found disembowelled in the bedroom of her partner, climate scientist Alois Bentner. Suttle's estranged wife, Lizzie, has abandoned Portsmouth, moved to Exeter and returned to journalism, hearing rumours of a local GP offering mercy killings to patients meeting certain criteria. The name of the GP is Harriet Reilly. So begins two investigations of the same crime. Operation Buzzard, with DS Suttle at its heart, and Lizzie, piecing together her own version of the events that led to Harriet Reilly's death.  Acts of Separation is by Graham Hurley and is due to be published in November 2015.

For Emily and Greg it was meant to be .the journey of a lifetime.  An epic trip along the iconic Highway 1 from Los Angeles to San Francisco.  No itinerary, no route, just them and the road.  But the last thing Greg remembers is a dark car forcing them over the edge, a sinister figure looking down on them, and his wife’s lifeless body lying next to him.  Now six months on, Greg needs answers and he decides to take the trip he and Emily never completed.  But as Greg heads north towards his destination, it seems someone out there is intent on stopping him.  The Echoes of Her Passing is by Michael Marshall and is due to be published in January 2016.

I was dead for 13 minutes. I don't remember how I ended up in the icy water but I do know this - it wasn't an accident and I wasn't suicidal. They say you should keep your friends close and your enemies closer, but when you're a teenage girl, it's hard to tell them apart. My friends love me, I'm sure of it. But that doesn't mean they didn't try to kill me. Does it? 13 Minutes is by Sarah Pinborough and is due to be published in October 2015.  It is a gripping psychological thriller about people, fears, manipulation and the power of the truth. A stunning read, it questions our relationships - and what we really know about the people closest to us ...

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