A doting mother or a pushy parent? Karen Bloom expects perfection. Her son, Ewan, has been something of a disappointment and she won't be making the same mistake again with her beloved, talented child, Bronte. Bronte's every waking hour will be spent at music lessons and dance classes, doing extra schoolwork and whatever it takes to excel. But as Karen pushes Bronte to the brink, the rest of the family crumbles. Karen's husband, Noel, is losing himself in work, and his teenage daughter from his first marriage, Verity, is becoming ever more volatile. The family is dangerously near breaking point. Karen would know when to stop...wouldn't she? The Trophy Child is by Paula Daly.
Sirens is by Joseph Knox. It starts with the girl. How it ends is up to DC Aidan Waits. Isabelle Rossiter has run away again. When Aidan Waits, a troubled junior detective, is summoned to her father's penthouse home - he finds a manipulative man, with powerful friends. But retracing Isabelle's steps through a dark, nocturnal world, Waits finds something else. An intelligent seventeen-year-old girl who's scared to death of something. As he investigates her story, and the unsolved disappearance of a young woman just like her, he realizes Isabelle was right to run away. Soon Waits is cut loose by his superiors, stalked by an unseen killer and dangerously attracted to the wrong woman. He's out of his depth and out of time. How can he save the girl, when he can't even save himself?
Blackout is by Marc Elsberg. Tomorrow will be too late. A cold night in Milan, Piero Manzano wants to get home. Then the traffic lights fail. Manzano is thrown from his Alfa as cars pile up. And not just on this street - every light in the city is dead. Across Europe, controllers watch in disbelief as electricity grids collapse. Plunged into darkness, people are freezing. Food and water supplies dry up. The death toll soars. Former hacker and activist Manzano becomes a prime suspect. But he is also the only man capable of finding the real attackers. Can he bring down a major terrorist network before it's too late?
Incendium is by A D Swanston. Summer, 1572 and England is vulnerable. Fear of plague and insurrection taint the air, and heresy, fanaticism and religious unrest seethe beneath the surface of society. Rumour and mistrust lead to imprisonment, torture and sometimes murder. To the young lawyer Christopher Radcliff and his patron and employer, Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, the prospects for peace are poor. As Leicester's chief intelligencer, Radcliff is charged with investigating both rumours of rebellion at home and invasion from abroad. That the queen's own cousin, the Duke of Norfolk, is found guilty of treason is a sign of just how deep the dissent goes. Supporters of the imprisoned Mary Queen of Scots foment revolt, but the papist threat doesn't just come from within. Across the channel, France is being swept up in a frenzy of brutal and bloody religious persecution while England's other enemy of old, Spain, makes preparations to invade. Christopher's own life is far from orderly. His relationship with the widow Katherine Allington is somewhat turbulent and he knows full well that the cut-throat world of court politics leaves no room for indiscretions. So England is a powder-keg, waiting for a spark to ignite it. And then a whisper of a plot that could provide that spark reaches Christopher. All he has to go on is a single word - 'incendium'. But what does it mean and who lies behind it? He must find the answers before it is too late...
Dublin, 1816. A young nursemaid conceals a pregnancy and then murders her new-born in the home of the Neshams, a prominent family in a radical Christian sect known as the Brethren. Rumours swirl about the identity of the child's father, but before an inquest can be held, the maid is found dead after an apparent suicide. When Abigail Lawless, the eighteen-year-old daughter of the coroner, by chance discovers a message from the maid's seducer, she sets out to discover the truth. It's the year without a summer. A climatic event has brought frost to mid-July, hunger and unrest, and a lingering fog casts a pall over the city. An only child, Abigail has been raised amid the books and instruments of her father's grim profession, and he in turn indulges her curious and critical mind. Now she must push against the restrictions society places on a girl her age to pursue an increasingly dangerous investigation. Two groups have come to dominate the city: the Brethren, founded by Mr Darby, a charismatic preacher and evangelical, and opposed to them, a burgeoning rationalist community led by the Royal Astronomer, Professor Reeves. Abigail's searches begin to uncover the well-guarded secrets of both factions, drawing the attention of a sinister figure who emerges in fleeting glimpses and second-hand reports: the man with the lazy eye. Abigail leads us through dissection rooms and hospital wards, austere churches and graceful salons, and to the equatorial room of the Saggart Observatory; and we see her interact with a wide assortment of characters: the family and staff of her Rutland Square home; her friends, peers and rivals; zealots, both religious and rationalist, while always shadowed by a seemingly pitiless sociopath, whom she believes has killed twice already, and will no doubt kill again ...Determined, resourceful and intuitive, and more than just a dutiful daughter or society debutant, Abigail Lawless emerges as a young lady sleuth operating at the dawn of forensic science. The Coroner’s Daughter is by Andrew Hughes.
Our story begins at the end of an investigation, as the members of London's Peculiar Crimes Unit race to catch a killer near London Bridge Station in the rain, not realising that they're about to cause a bizarre accident just yards away from the crime scene. And it will have repercussions for them all...One year later, in an exclusive London crescent, a woman walks her dog - but she's being watched. When she's found dead, the Peculiar Crimes Unit is called in to investigate. Why? Because the method of death is odd, the gardens are locked, the killer had no way in - or out - and the dog has disappeared. So a typical case for Bryant & May. But the hows and whys of the murder are not the only mysteries surrounding the dead woman - there's a missing husband and a lost nanny to puzzle over too. And it seems very like that the killer is preparing to strike again. As Arthur Bryant delves in to the history of London's 'wild chambers' - its extraordinary parks and gardens, John May and the rest of the team seem to have caused a national scandal. If no-one is safe then all of London's open spaces must be closed...With the PCU placed under house arrest, only Arthur Bryant remains at liberty - but can a hallucinating old codger catch the criminal and save the unit before it's too late? Bryant and May – The Wild Chamber is by Christopher Fowler.
The Owl Always Hunts at Night is by Samuel Bjork. When a young woman is found dead, the police are quick to respond. But what they find at the scene is unexpected. The body is posed, the scene laboriously set. And there is almost no forensic evidence to be found. Detective Mia Kruger has been signed off work pending psychological assessment. But her boss has less regard for the rules than he should. Desperate to get Mia back in the office, Holger Munch offers her an unofficial deal. But the usually brilliant Mia is struggling and the team are unable to close the case. Until a young hacker uncovers something that forces the team to confront the scope of the murderer's plans and face the possibility that he may already be on the hunt for a second victim.
What Alice Knew is by T A Cotterell. He trusts her with his secret. But can she trust him?Alice has always trusted her instincts. And she knows that she married a good man. But when a woman dies and the evidence begins to suggest otherwise, Alice does what she always does - she looks for the truth. What do you do when the person you love most makes a huge mistake? Should Alice tell the truth, or can she live with a lie...
Detective Inspector Harry Virdee wasn't expecting this. But there's no denying that the body lying at his feet is her - Tara, his beloved niece. And although his boss is already removing him from the case, Harry knows there no such thing as too close. He will stop at nothing to find the monster that killed his flesh and blood. But before he can, he must tell his brother the news. And there is no predicting what a man on the edge will do when confronted with the worst thing imaginable. Harry may have a murderer to find but if he isn't careful, he may also have a murder to prevent. Girl Zero is by A A Dhand.
Dead Woman Walking is by Sharon Bolton. Just before dawn in the hills near the Scottish border, a man murders a young woman. At the same time, a hot-air balloon crashes out of the sky. There's just one survivor. She's seen the killer's face - but he's also seen hers. And he won't rest until he's eliminated the only witness to his crime. Alone, scared, trusting no one, she's running to where she feels safe - but it could be the most dangerous place of all...
It was a first class deception that would change her life forever. 1939, Europe on the brink of war. Lily Shepherd leaves England on an ocean liner for Australia, escaping her life of drudgery for new horizons. She is instantly seduced by the world onboard: cocktails, black-tie balls and beautiful sunsets. Suddenly, Lily finds herself mingling with people who would otherwise never give her the time of day. But soon she realizes her glamorous new friends are not what they seem. The rich and hedonistic Max and Eliza Campbell, mysterious and flirtatious Edward, and fascist George are all running away from tragedy and scandal even greater than her own. By the time the ship docks, two passengers are dead, war has been declared, and life will never be the same again. A Dangerous Crossing is by Rachel Rhys.
Frost at Midnight is by James Henry. It was a first class deception that would change her life forever. 1939, Europe on the brink of war. Lily Shepherd leaves England on an ocean liner for Australia, escaping her life of drudgery for new horizons. She is instantly seduced by the world on-board: cocktails, black-tie balls and beautiful sunsets. Suddenly, Lily finds herself mingling with people who would otherwise never give her the time of day. But soon she realizes her glamorous new friends are not what they seem. The rich and hedonistic Max and Eliza Campbell, mysterious and flirtatious Edward, and fascist George are all running away from tragedy and scandal even greater than her own. By the time the ship docks, two passengers are dead, war has been declared, and life will never be the same again.
The Child is by Fiona Barton. When a paragraph in an evening newspaper reveals a decades-old tragedy, most readers barely give it a glance. But for three strangers it's impossible to ignore. For one woman, it's a reminder of the worst thing that ever happened to her. For another, it's the dangerous possibility that her darkest secret is about to be discovered. And for a third, a journalist, it's the first clue in a hunt to uncover the truth. The Child's story will be told.
How do you stop a serial killer who no one believes is real? Alice is in high-risk psychiatric unit. Fellow patients are disappearing. She knows they’re not suicides, though. They are being picked off one by one. Alice could need your help. Because she’s next. They All Fall Down is by Tammy Cohen.
After helping to avert a deadly attack on London, Luke Carlton has been welcomed on board as a full-fledged member of SIS and is assigned the role of case officer running agents. He is sent undercover into Iran to 'turn' and recruit an officer in that country's infamous Revolutionary Guard Corps: the word is that a conservative group within the IRGC doesn't like the direction post-revolutionary Iran appear to be taking and are planning something big to embarrass their own government - and frighten the country's new 'allies' in the West. The intelligence services need to find out who and what, and fast...but then a senior British government minister on an official visit to Iran goes missing, his close protection officers are found murdered... Ultimatum is by Frank Gardner.
The Restless Dead is by Simon Beckett. ‘Composed of over sixty per cent water itself, ahuman body isn’t naturally buoyant. It will float only for as long as there is air in its lungs, before gradually sinking to the bottom as the air seeps out. If the water is very cold or deep, it will remain there, undergoing a slow, dark dissolution that can take years. But if the water is warm enough for bacteria to feed and multiply, then it will continue to decompose. Gases will build up in the intestines, increasing the body’s buoyancy until it floats again. And the dead will literally rise . . . ‘It was on a Friday evening that forensics consultant Dr David Hunter took the call: a Detective Inspector Lundy from the Essex force. Just up the coast from Mersea Island, near a place called Backwaters, a badly decomposed body has been found and the local police would welcome Hunter's help with the recovery and identification . . . Because they would like it to be that of Leo Villiers, the 31 year-old son of a prominent local family who went missing weeks ago, and they are under pressure to close the case. Villiers was supposed to have been having an affair with a married woman, Emma Derby. She too is missing, and the belief is that the young man disposed of his lover, and then killed himself. If only it was so straightforward. But Hunter has his doubts about the identity of the remains. The hands and feet are missing, the face no longer recognisable. Then further remains are found - and suddenly these remote wetlands are giving up yet more grisly secrets. As Hunter is slowly but surely drawn into a toxic mire of family secrets and resentments, local lies and deception, he finds himself unable, or perhaps unwilling, to escape even though he knows that the real threat comes from the living, not the dead.