Gordon Tilson is a lonely widower who befriends a young woman online. When her sister is injured in a car accident, he sends her thousands of dollars to cover the hospital bill and runs off to Ghana to surprise his new love. But he soon disappears without a trace. Frustrated by the inadequacies of the local police in Accra, his son Derek turns to a PI agency for assistance where there is a new detective on the scene determined to prove her worth. The case of the missing American man will drag both Emma and Derek into a world of Sakawa scams and corruption. The Missing American is by Kwei Quartey.
Murder at the Manchester Museum is by Jim Eldridge. 1895. Former Scotland Yard detective Daniel Wilson, made famous from his days working the Jack the Ripper case, and his archaeologist sidekick Abigail Fenton are summoned to investigate the murder of a young woman at the Manchester Museum. Though staff remember the woman as a recent and regular visitor, no one appears to know who she is and she has no possessions from which identify her. Seeking help from a local journalist, Daniel hopes to unravel this mystery, but the journey to the truth is fraught.
A parent's worst fear is realised when seven-year-old Libby Hallforth goes missing at a funfair; no witnesses, no leads, and no trace. Months later, after the trail for Libby has gone cold, DI Jake Porter and DS Nick Styles find human remains but that's just the tip of a gruesome iceberg. Everyone is a suspect, nobody can be trusted, including the Hallforth family. The chances of getting justice for Libby are fading fast, along with Porter's chances of stopping a killer before they strike again. All That is Buried is by Robert Scragg.
Blood Will be Born is by Gary Donnelly. DI Owen Sheen vowed never to return to Ireland, but he needs answers to the questions he has surrounding his brother's death. On loan from the Met to the PSNI, he is meant to be setting up a new Historical Offences Team, but instead he finds himself partnered with DC Aoife McCusker to work on her first murder investigation. As the investigation begins to unravel into chaos, its roots deep in the dark past of the Troubles, will Sheen be able to put his personal agenda aside? And will McCusker keep her career long enough to crack the case and prove herself as a detective?
When an unidentified and blood-soaked man is discovered with the name Baal-Berith scored into his flesh, Professor Matt Hunter is called in by the bewildered local police. As an atheist ex-minister and expert on religion, Matt can shed light on the ancient Canaanite demon known as the spirit of blasphemy and murder, but as he's drawn into a frenzied murder investigation, a fury of media interest and a TV show documenting a mass exorcism, the situation follows a much murkier path. Striving to provide balance to the show's increasingly sensational tone and rational support for the vulnerable 'clients', Matt cannot leave, even as events get seriously out of hand... Possessed is by Peter Laws.
The Patterdale Plot is by Rebecca Tope. Simmy Brown had hoped that her autumn would be less frantic than usual to give her a chance to enjoy her pregnancy, her upcoming nuptials, and some time looking for a new house in the Patterdale area of the Lake District. But it is not to be . When one of the lodgers at her parents' Bed & Breakfast dies in her arms after seemingly being poisoned, she becomes embroiled in a complex investigation, headed up by her friend D I Moxon. It is clear the victim had some connection to a controversial new building project near Patterdale and Simmy's ideas of a quiet run up to Christmas .
Night Raids is by Jim Kelly. A lone German bomber crosses the East coast of Britain on a moonless night in the long hot summer of 1940. The pilot picks up the silver thread of a river and following it to his target, drops his bomb over Cambridge's rail yards. The shell falls short of its mark, and lands in a maze-like neighbourhood of terraced streets on the edge of the city's medieval centre. D I Eden Brooke is first on the scene and discovers the body of an elderly woman, Nora Wylde, beside her shattered bed in a terrace house on Elm Street, two fingers on her left hand severed, in what looks like a brutal attempt by looters to steal her rings. When the next day Nora's teenage granddaughter, Peggy, a munitions worker at Marshall's Airfield, is reported missing, Brooke realises there is more to the situation that meets the eye.
Death in Saint-Chartier is by Ivo Fornesa. Seeking a quiet spot to write his memoirs, Laurent de Rodergues secludes himself in Saint-Chartier, a village in the heart of France. Yet his tranquil life is soon disturbed by Carlos, an eccentric millionaire determined to give the town's medieval chateau a costly and controversial makeover. When the chateau is unveiled after months of anticipation, the whole town turns out to gaze in wonder - only to find their host lying dead in a pool of blood. Laurent suspects foul play, and when the gendarmes find nothing, he makes it his mission to unmask the murderer. But where to begin? From jilted lovers to jealous rivals, disgruntled employees to shadowy associates practically everyone had a reason to want Carlos dead. As Laurent quickly learns, beneath its idyllic facade, the town of Saint-Chartier is rife with resentment and secret passions.
On the brink of a breakdown, two years after the death of his fiancee, Jim Hawkes quits his high-powered job in the City to rent a cottage in the Devonshire countryside seeking some well-needed rest. But Slyford St James is far from the peaceful haven Jim was hoping for. Almost immediately he is plagued by strange occurrences: a combination lock that won't open, loud noises in the attic, the figure of a little girl always just out of sight. His new village friends, Jed and Emma, are convinced Jim has found his way to the village for a reason, to solve the mystery surrounding the suspicious death of a child. But as Jim is haunted by the ghosts of his past and endangered by a real-world threat in the present, it soon becomes apparent that true evil never dies. The Evil Within is by S M Hardy.
Hostage to Fortune is by Sarah Hawkswood. January, 1144. Hugh Bradecote does not want his betrothed heading off on pilgrimage to the shrine of St Edgyth at Polesworth, but the Archbishop of Canterbury's envoy and his entourage of monks seem Heaven-sent as escorts, right up until they are captured by a renegade who wants his forger out of the lord sheriff's cells; a renegade who loathes the Benedictines, and kills for pleasure. Against a backdrop of a hard winter and even a frozen River Severn, Bradecote and Catchpoll are struggling to rescue the clerics, and Christina, before a psychopath does his worst, the lord sheriff loses patience, and Bradecote cracks under the pressure.
The Figure in the Photograph is by Kevin Sullivan, 1898. When Juan's father is killed while working as a photographer in Cuba, the young man is left with nothing but his last photos amid the chaos as the war between Spain and America escalates. But the images reveal a sinister truth to his father's last moments, and Juan soon realises his death was no accident. The young man travels alone to Scotland to grieve with his surviving family and soon immerses himself in the study of photography and pioneers a new invention, a self-timer. When this technology inadvertently solves a crime, it is not long before the device draws the attention of local law enforcement, and he is invited to Glasgow to assist police hunt down a serial killer.
Vale of Tears is by Sarah Hawkswood. April 1144. A body is found floating in Fladbury mill leat, a man in green who has been stabbed but not robbed. The lord sheriff's trio discover him to be an Evesham horse dealer, who has a beautiful young wife who 'strays'. Did the wife or one of her lovers get rid of him? What is the connection with the lord of Harvington, who wed the man's sister, and how did that lady meet her death? What connection is there with the defrocked monk who worked on some leases for the lord and was hanged for theft, and where is the horse dealers' horse? The trio have to work seamlessly together to unravel the thread that links seemingly disparate deaths before even more people die, and in the process keep Walkelin from the noose.
When Juno Browne finds a life-sized effigy floating in the River Ashburn, a note attached claims it as the work of Cutty Dyer, Ashburton's mythical blood-drinking demon. At first, the police dismiss Juno's find as a practical joke. Then the body of a woman is discovered by the river and it becomes clear that a real killer has taken on Cutty's identity. The murder of an officer from Dartmoor prison throws suspicion on recently released prisoner, Luke Rowlands. But when a third corpse is discovered, an old adversary of Juno's, it seems that the killer is striking at random. Juno, convinced of Luke's innocence, finds herself drawn into solving the mystery, especially as the killer is someone close at hand, close enough to send her their own personal message. As the rain falls steadily, and the level of the River Ashburn continues to rise, Juno must unmask the real identity of Cutty Dyer, or risk being swept away on a murderous tide. From Devon with Death is by Stephanie Austin.
June 1144. When the naked corpse of an unknown man is discovered and the Prince of Powys's messenger fails to reach Earl Robert of Gloucester, Bradecote, Catchpoll and Walkelin head to Wales to confirm his identity, and piece together evidence that the dead man deserved a noose rather than a dagger. Retracing his steps leads them to a manor with a sarcastic lord, a neglected wife, a bitter mother and a fevered brother, all amidst folk who do not want the truth uncovered. The lord sheriff's men have to unravel a knot where the law and justice seem to be in opposition. Faithful Unto Death is by Sarah Hawkswood.
Rage of the Assassin is by Edward Marston. London 1818. The MP Sir Roger Mellanby attends a performance of Macbeth at Covent Garden, featuring Hannah Granville as Lady Macbeth. It is the final performance of what has been a triumphant production and both the Prince Regent and Hannah's love, Bow Street Rival Paul Skillen are in the audience. After the show, both Mellanby and the Prince Regent make their way to the stage door for a glimpse of Hannah. As the crowd jostles around them, a shot is fired and Mellanby is killed but Paul Skillen quickly deduces that the assassin was really after the Prince Regent. As his attempt has failed, the assassin follows the Royal party to Brighton Pavilion where his paymasters are attending a party. Will Paul and his twin brother Peter be able to stop him from killing Prinny? The Bow Street Rivals will most certainly try.