Friday 28 June 2013

Crime Fiction at the Edinburgh Book Festival

Tickets for the Edinburgh Book Festival go on sale this morning at 8:30am and can be booked here.  There are a wide range of crime fiction events taking place as well.  They are as follows :-

Saturday 10 August 6:30pm - 7:30pm
Alexander McCall Smith
Meet Scotland's Favourite Storyteller

Sunday 11 August 6:45pm - 7:45pm
Gordon Ferris and Deon Meyer
Crime Writing With Conviction.

Monday 12 August 6:30pm - 7:30pm
Ian Rankin
The Return of Rebus

Monday 12 August 8:00pm - 9:00pm
Val McDermid
Conviction Fiction

Tuesday 13 August 2:00pm - 3:00pm
Alexander McCall Smith
We Are Detective

Tuesday 13 August 6:45pm - 7:45pm
Christopher Aird. Ann Cleeves and Denise Mina
Adapting Novels for Television

Tuesday 13 August 7:00pm - 8:00pm
Peter James
Criminally Popular

Wednesday 14 August 1:30pm - 2:30pm
Maj Sjöwall with Ian Rankin
Queen of Crime Meets King of Tartan Noir

Wednesday 14 August 8:00pm - 9:00pm
Alexander McCall Smith
Fifteen Years of Mma Ramotswe

Wednesday 14 August 8:30pm - 9:30pm
Mark Lawson and Liam McIlvanney
There May Be Trouble Ahead

Thursday 15 August 6:45pm - 7:45pm
Doug Johnstone and Laura Lippman
Anxious New Parents Beware

Thursday 15 August 8:30pm - 9:30pm
Denise Mina
The Dying Days of the Red Road

Thursday 15 August 9:30pm - 10:30pm
Tim Burgess and Ian Rankin
Confessions of a Charlatan

Friday 16 August 1:30pm - 2:30pm
Alexander McCall Smith
Meet Scotland's Favourite Storyteller

Friday 16 August 3:00pm - 4:00pm
William McIlvanney
The Triumphant Return of Laidlaw

Saturday 17 August 6:45pm - 7:45pm
David Ashton
Anarchy in Edinburgh? Call for Inspector McLevy

Saturday 17 August 8:30pm - 9:30pm
Gillian Galbraith and Antti Tuomainen
Lighting up Two Cities

Monday 19 August 6:45pm - 7:45pm
Arne Dahl and Alex Gray
Crime Writing Superstars Meet

Monday 19 August 8:00pm - 9:00pm
Christopher Brookmyre
Comedy, Crime and some Very Bad Language

Tuesday 20 August 10:15am - 11:15am
James Runcie and Sara Sheridan
In the Footsteps of Miss Marple and Hercule Poirot

Tuesday 20 August 7:00pm - 8:00pm
Nicci French
Getting Into The Mind of a Killer

Tuesday 20 August 8:30pm - 9:30pm
Tom Benn and Malcom Mackay
Gun Metal Tainted with Blood and Kisses

Wednesday 21 August 3:30pm - 4:30pm
Mark Mills and Jennie Rooney
Why Do I Spy

Wednesday 21 August 8:00pm - 9:00pm
Ian Rankin
The Return of Rebus

Thursday 22 August 4:30pm - 5:30pm
Quintin Jardine
20 Years of Bob Skinner

Friday 23 August 7:00pm - 8:00pm
Mark Billingham
Dead Realistic Crime Writing

Friday 23 August 8:30pm - 9:30pm
Lauren Beukes and Mikhail Shishkin 
The Novel as Time Machine

Saturday 24 August 8:30pm - 9:30pm
Ben Aaronovitch and Paul Cornell
Dr Whodunnit

Sunday 25 August 10:15am - 11:15am
Helen FitzGerald and Sophie McKenzie
The Horrors That Unfold When Children Go Missing

Sunday 25 August 6:45pm - 7:45pm
Peter May and Teresa Solana
Tartan and Catalan Noir

Sunday 25 August 8:30pm - 9:30pm
Niall Leonard and Russ Litten
To Catch a Killer

Monday 26 August 11:30am - 12:30pm
Margaret Atwood, Valerie Martin and Ian Rankin
Horror and Weirdness, a Scottish Peculiarity

Monday 26 August 8:30pm - 9:30pm
Denise Mina and Andrea Mutti
Stieg Larsson in Graphic Detail

Thursday 27 June 2013

Win Tickets to the New Blood Panel at Harrogate Crime Festival!

Anya Lipska, has been selected by Val McDermid to appear on her New Blood Panel at this year's Theakstons Crime Festival in Harrogate and to celebrate the occasion, The Friday Project is offering the chance to win a pair of tickets to the event.

To enter the competition, answer the following question:  

What is the name of the fictional Polish private investigator in Anya Lipska's debut novel Where the Devil Can't Go?  

The pair of tickets can be sent anywhere in the UK.  They will allow entry for two people to the New Blood Panel, taking place at The Old Swan Hotel, Harrogate, at 12 noon on Saturday 20 July 2013 - for full details of the panel and other festival events click here

The prize does not include travel, accommodation or other expenses that the winners incur in attending the festival.  Answers to the competition should be sent to

Please remember to include your full contact details.

The closing date for the competition is Thursday 8 July 2013.

Sunday 23 June 2013

The Long Road with James Oswald

Today’s guest blog is by James Oswald.  His novel Natural Causes has been chosen as a Richard and Judy Summer Read.  His next book The Book of Souls is due to be published on July 4th 2013.  When he is not writing James is busy looking after his farm where he rears sheep and cattle.  

I wrote Natural Causes, the first book in the Inspector McLean series, back in 2005.  At the time, I was not a huge fan of crime fiction simply because I had not read much.  Too many books of all genres, too little time.  My good friend Stuart MacBride had recently switched from writing fantasy to crime, with great success, and he suggested I do the same.  I usually do what Stuart tells me, so thought I’d give it a go.

I am lazy at heart, so dug up a character I had created for a comic script back in the early nineties.  McLean has been in quite a few of my stories as a part of the supporting cast down the years; I felt now he deserved centre stage.  My comic’s background perhaps explains why I kept the subtle supernatural overtones to the story, too.  I was looking for a unique selling point, as the marketeers would have it, but I also felt safer on fantasy ground.  Research has never been my strong point, and learning all about the machinations of the Scottish Police is hard work.

Natural Causes started life as a short story, published first on my blog and then by Spinetingler Magazine.  When I told Spinetingler editor Sandra Ruttan I was turning it into a novel, she suggested I enter it into the CWA Debut Dagger.  It is a measure of my crime fiction naiveté that I had never heard of the CWA by then!  To my delight and surprise, it was short-listed for the 2007 prize, although it did not win.  I’d hoped the exposure would get publishers interested, even more so when the sequel, The Book of Souls was short-listed the following year, but back then no-one was too keen on the blending of genres.  There is no market for this kind of book was the all-too frequent response.

Fast-forward to 2011.  I had taken over the family farm, written the opening to a couple
more books but not been able to finish either.  I had no agent, nothing out there being looked at.  I was pretty much ready to give up on the dream of being published altogether.  Then a chance conversation with Al Guthrie alerted me to the possibilities of ebooks.  I had had a go at the old-fashioned kind of self-publishing years earlier, and even offered some of my fantasy stories for sale as pdf downloads back before ereaders existed.  This new world of publishing sounded interesting, though, and I had two crime novels pretty much ready to go.  As long as I could keep costs down, it could not hurt to put them out as ebooks.

My marketing strategy was very simple: give away Natural Causes and hope people liked it enough to buy The Book of Souls.  I hoped to shift 1000 copies of both books combined in the first year.  The only money I spent was on professionally designed covers from the wonderful JT Lindroos.

Natural Causes came out in February 2012.  Initially it was priced at 99p, and shifted one or two copies a week.  I tweeted a bit about it, set up a facebook page, but otherwise did nothing.  Then in early May, the price dropped to zero on Amazon and the book instantly shot to the top of the Kindle free charts.  That month it was downloaded just shy of 50,000 times in the UK, 15,000 in the US.  I did nothing to promote this, much to the irritation of all the people who have subsequently asked me how I did it.

There was much talk about ebooks at the 2012 Harrogate Crime Writing Festival, and quite a few editors were interested in my story.  I bumped into Juliet Mushens, whom I had met a few years before when she was an agent’s assistant.  That time the agent she was assisting had turned down Natural Causes and the chance to represent me, but Juliet was still keen on the book and, an agent in her own right now, asked to see it again.  I signed with her just the week before the Frankfurt Book Fair - which turned out to be perfect timing.  By then Kindle sales of Natural Causes and The Book of Souls were at their peak and there was a definite buzz about the books.  In the UK, the series went to a five-way auction, eventually won by Michael Joseph.  German, Canadian, Italian, Brazilian, Serbian and Czech rights were snapped up in what, for me, was a crazy; pinch me, dream-come-true week.  I still sometimes wonder whether it is all really happening.

The print edition of Natural Causes comes out on May 9th, The Book of Souls on July 4th.  I have handed in the manuscript for book three, The Hangman’s Song, and that will be published in 2014.  Back in 1993, I had my first ever piece of writing published for money - a script in 2000AD comic.  That was when I decided I wanted to be a writer.  They say it takes ten years to become an overnight success.  Well, in my case it has been twenty.  I think it has been worth the wait.
Natural Causes” is the first novel from James Oswald in the “Detective Inspector McLean” series.  A young girl’s mutilated body is discovered in a sealed room.  Her remains are carefully arranged, in what seems to have been a cruel and macabre ritual, which appears to have taken place over 60 years ago.  For newly appointed Edinburgh Detective Inspector Tony McLean this baffling cold case ought to be a low priority – but he is haunted by the young victim and her grisly death.  Meanwhile, the city is horrified by a series of bloody killings.  Deaths for which there appears to be neither rhyme nor reason, and which leave Edinburgh’s police at a loss.  McLean is convinced that these deaths are somehow connected to the terrible ceremonial killing of the girl, all those years ago.  It is an irrational, almost supernatural theory.  And one which will lead McLean closer to the heart of a terrifying and ancient evil…

The Body of Souls is the second book in the Detective Inspector McLean series.  Every year for ten years, a young woman's body was found in Edinburgh at Christmas time: naked, throat slit, body washed clean.  Ten years, ten women.  The final victim, Kirsty Summers, was Detective Constable Tony McLean's fiancée.  However, the Christmas Killer made a mistake.  In a cellar under a shop, McLean found a torture chamber and put an end to the brutal killing spree.  Twelve years later, and a fellow prisoner has just murdered the incarcerated Christmas Killer.  Nevertheless, with the arrival of the festive season comes a body.  A young woman: naked, washed, her throat cut.  Is this a copycat killer?  Was the wrong man behind bars all this time?  On the other hand, is there a more sinister, frightening explanation?  McLean must revisit the most disturbing case of his life and discover what he missed before the killer strikes again . . .

More information about James Oswald can be found on his website or you can follow him on Facebook or Twitter @sirBenfro

Saturday 22 June 2013

25th Anniversary of The Silence of the Lambs

Arrow is reissuing classic cult thriller The Silence of the Lambs for its 25th anniversary. 

The novel will have a gold foil design and a new introduction from author Thomas Harris, which editorial assistant Tim Vanderpump said, “gives some background to the earliest origins of Thomas’ most famous creation.  It’s a real privilege to publish, as Thomas has only written five books in nearly 40 years, and has given barely any interviews or talked publicly about his work.”

The Silence of the Lambs, which has sold more than 11 million copies worldwide, is published on 1st August (£7.99).

Friday 21 June 2013

Best Fictional Detective Balloon Debate

Saturday 22nd June 2013, 6pm – 8pm

Blackwells Charing Cross Road will be hosting what promises to be a lively balloon debate to figure out who is the best fictional detective.

They will be joined by Nicola Upson, author of a brilliant series of crime novels featuring Josephine Tey (starting with An Expert in Murder), who will argue that Tey’s own creation, Alan Grant, should win the title.  Inspector Alan Grant starred in 5 of Tey’s detective books, the most famous of which was The Daughter of Time where he solves the murder of the Princes in the Tower from his bed while recovering from a broken leg.

Sara Sheridan will be arguing on behalf of Precious Ramotswe, star of Alexander McCall Smith’s No 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency.  Having written 2 crime novels starring ex-World War 2 spy Mirabelle Bevan (Brighton Belle and London Calling), Sheridan is well placed to argue for the excellence of another female detective.

Barry Forshaw, an expert on crime fiction and author of British Crime Film and Nordic Noir, will argue that Sherlock Holmes is the greatest of the great detectives.  With his cerebral skill and ability to physically transform himself, as well as come back to the dead, will Holmes be declared the winner?

The final member of the panel will be Emelyne Godfrey who has written extensively on Masculinity and Femininity and Crime in Victorian London.  She will be arguing in favour of adventurous Judith Lee.  Lee was the female equivalent of Sherlock Holmes and starred in a series of books by Richard Marsh, who made her feisty, independent, and able to defend herself using martial arts.

Will it be a battle of the sexes and who will win?  You will decide!

Tickets are free, but please reserve a place for the event by emailing

Thursday 20 June 2013

Stephen King’s Joyland Online Carnival Tour

Shots Ezine are delighted to offer lucky readers an opportunity to enter the Titan / Hardcase Crime Joyland Carnival Competition.

Want to know what all the fuss is about? – click here

Support Shots Ezine and purchase your copy of Stephen King’s Joyland here

So step right up! Step right up! Talk “the Talk” @Titan Books to Win Money-Can’t-Buy Prizes

Best-selling author Stephen King returns with a breathtaking tale of love – and loss – set in a 1970s North Carolina amusement park.

Celebrating the release of this bittersweet coming-of-age novel, Titan Books and Hard Case Crime are teaming up with a series of digital partners to host competitions to win a free copies of Joyland and a limited run of EXCLUSIVE JOYLAND canvas prints of Glen Orbik’s cover painting.

Who dares enter the world of JOYLAND to win these unique prizes?

Playing the game is simple.

To be entered into todays draw to win AN EXCLUSIVE COVER ART CANVAS PRINT, just copy and paste the correct statement to a tweet @titanbooks

 To a carny, a SHOUT is a promotional flyer for a park…I think. Find out in Stephen King’s #JOYLAND

To a carny, a SHOUT is a secret call alerting another carny to danger…I think. Find out in Stephen King’s #JOYLAND

Follow the carnival as it tours across websites… Each website will post a definition of carny “Talk” or Stephen King trivia everyday for three weeks. 

The more unique carny terms and Stephen King facts that you share with the world, the more likely that you are to win books or other prizes.  For full details of stops on the tour please visit

Step right up! Step right up! Talk “the Talk” @Titan Books!

Wednesday 19 June 2013

Criminal Splatterings

According to the Bookseller, Selina Walker has bought three crime novels from author and journalist Tony Parsons.  The first novel, titled The Murder Bag, kicks off a crime series featuring detective and single parent Max Wolfe.  In The Murder Bag, Wolfe - father to a five-year-old girl - is called in to investigate a nasty killing, which leads him from the backstreets of London's West End to the corridors of power in Westminster.

Congratulations also go to Paul Finch who has also signed a five-book deal with Avon.  According to the Bookseller, his second book Sacrifice has already had over 10,000 pre-orders in e-book format ahead of its summer release.

If you have somehow managed to miss the results of the awards given at Crimefest then they are as follows-
Sounds of Crime: Standing In Another Man's Grave by Ian Rankin; Read by James MacPherson (Orion Audio)
Last Laugh: Killing the Emperors by Ruth Dudley Edwards (Allison & Busby)
eDunnit: Bryant & May and the Invisible Code by Christopher Fowler (Doubleday)
H. R. F. Keating Award: British Crime Writing: An Encyclopaedia by Barry Forshaw, editor (Greenwood World Publishing)

The shortlists for a number of the CWA Daggers were also announced – 
The CWA International Dagger:
Alex by Pierre Lemaitre, translated by Frank Wynne (Quercus)
The Missing File by D.A. Mishani, translated by Steven Cohen (Quercus)
Two Soldiers by Anders Roslund and Börge Hellström, translated by Kari Dickson (Quercus)
Ghost Riders of Ordebec by Fred Vargas, translated by Siân Reynolds (Harvill Secker)
Death in Sardinia by Marco Vichi, translated by Stephen Sartarelli (Hodder & Stoughton)
The Collini Case by Ferdinand von Schirach, translated by Anthea Bell (Michael Joseph)

The CWA Non-Fiction Dagger:
Midnight in Peking by Paul French (Penguin Viking)
The Boy in the River by Richard Hoskins (Pan Macmillan)
Against a Tide of Evil by Mukesh Kapila, with Damien Lewis (Mainstream)
A Fine Day for a Hanging by Carol Ann Lee (Mainstream)
Injustice by Clive Stafford Smith (Random House)
Murder at Wrotham Hill by Diana Souhami (Quercus)

The CWA Ellis Peters Historical Dagger:
The Heretics by Rory Clements (John Murray)
Pilgrim Soul by Gordon Ferris (Corvus)
The Paris Winter by Imogen Robertson (Headline)
Dead Men and Broken Hearts by Craig Russell (Quercus)
The Twelfth Department by William Ryan (Mantle)
The Scent of Death by Andrew Taylor (HarperCollins)

The CWA Short Story Dagger:
Method Murder,” by Simon Brett (from The Mammoth Book of Best British Crime, Volume 10, edited by Maxim Jakubowski; Constable)
Stairway C,” by Piero Colaprico (from Outsiders, edited by Ben Faccini; MacLehose Press)
Come Away with Me,” by Stella Duffy (from The Mammoth Book of Best British Crime, Volume 10)
The Case of Death and Honey,” by Neil Gaiman (from The Mammoth Book of Best British Crime, Volume 10)
Ferengi,” by Carlo Lucarelli (from Outsiders, edited by Ben Faccini; MacLehose Press)
Lost and Found,” by Zoë Sharp (from Vengeance, edited by Lee Child; Corvus)

The CWA Dagger in the Library:
• Belinda Bauer
• Alison Bruce
• Gordon Ferris
• Christopher Fowler
• Elly Griffiths
• Michael Ridpath

The CWA Debut Dagger:
The Assassin’s Keeper by Aine Oomhnaill (Ireland)
Call Time by Finn Clarke (UK)
TAG by Sue Dawes (UK)
Working in Unison by Alex Sweeney (UK),
Lesson Plan for Murder by Marie Hannan-Mandel (USA)
Honour or Justice by Ron Puckering (UK)
Torment by David Evans (UK)
When the Bow Breaks by Jayne Barnard (Canada)
Fighting Darkness: The Killer Trail by D.B. Carew (Canada)
Born in a Burial Gown by Mike Craven (UK)
The Journeyman by Emma Melville (UK)
A Cure for All Evils by Joanna Dodd (UK)

The winners will be announced during on July 15 in London. Also included on July 15 will be the presentation, to Lee Child, of this year’s Diamond Dagger and the announcement of CWA’s Gold, Steel, and John Creasey Daggers Nominees. 

Congratulations also go to Liza Marklund whose novel Last Will won the inaugural Petrona Award for Scandinavian Crime Novel of the year.  The winner was announced by Barry Forshaw.

Over in the Guardian the question has been asked why Nordic detective stories / films are so successful.  Lots of interesting responses.  In addition, there is an interesting article on whether crime fiction is the new punk.

Very good article in the independent on Nordicana that took place over the weekend (15 & 16 June 2013).

Madrid is also due to host their sixth crime fiction festival.  The festival is due to take place between 17 to 27 October 2013 and France is due to be the guest country.  Tributes will be given to Georges Simenon and his protagonist Maigret.  More information can be found here (in Spanish)

For those of you that can’t get enough of Icelandic crime fiction will be pleased to note that Iceland are due to host their first festival of crime fiction.  Iceland Noir is due to be held at the Nordic Cultural Centre, Reykjavik on Saturday 23rd November 2013 and Sunday 24th November 2013.  Amongst the well-known authors due to attend include Anne Cleeves, Yrsa Sigurdardóttir, John Curran and Quentin Bates.

Congratulations also go to Jorn Lier Horst whose novel The Hunting Dogs recently won the Norwegian Glass Key for the best Scandinavian crime novel.  The Hunting Dogs is due to be published  in the Spring of 2014. Jorn Lier Horst is also due to attend the first Iceland Noir crime festival.

In the Independent, Helen Brown talks to Louise Doughty about her psychological thriller.  Apple Tree Yard, which is about a successful, professional woman whose life, is upended by an affair.

The trailer for the new Wolverine film has been released and can be seen below.

Congratulations also go to Peter Robinson.  ITV have commissioned a third DCI Banks series.  According to the Independent, the show will dedicate two episodes each to three stories based on the books and are called Wednesday’s Child, Piece Of My Heart and Bad Boy.  Information from ITV can be found here.

Sad news for all of us that are waiting and looking forward to the sequel to Sin CitySin City: A Dame to Kill For instead of it being released in October this year, it looks as if it will not be seen now until August 2014.  Still, it looks as if it will be worth waiting for with
Mickey Rourke, Jessica Alba, Bruce Willis and Rosario Dawson all reprise roles, while Josh Brolin, Eva Green, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Dennis Haysbert, Jeremy Piven, Ray Liotta, Juno Temple and Stacy Keach are the new recruits.  More information can also be found here and here.

Extremely sad news to hear that author Vince Flynn has passed away.  He was suffering from long-term prostrate cancer.  According to CBS Minnesota, he died on Wednesday morning.  Vince was the author of 15 novels centred on the character of Mitch Rapp, an undercover CIA agent.  More information can be found here.

Also recently and rather sadly, Joan Parker the widow of Robert B Parker passed away (Hat tip to Mystery Fanfare for the news).  More information can be found here and here.

The 2013 Nero Award finalists have been announced.  The finalists are –
Antiques Disposal by Barbara Allan
Truth of All Things by Kieran Shields
Burning Midnight by Loren D. Estleman
Dead Anyway by Chris Knopf

The Nero Award is presented each year to an author for the best mystery written in the tradition of Rex Stout’s Nero Wolfe stories.  It is presented at the Black Orchid Banquet, traditionally held on the first Saturday in December in New York City.  The Nero Award celebrates literary excellence in the mystery genre. More information can be found here.

The Telegraph’s film critic Robbie Collin has chosen his 10 best thriller films of all time.  The list can be found here.  Pleased to see The Third Man on the list along with Taxi Driver and Silence of the Lambs.

Fans of Luther and Idris Elba will be pleased to know that he will be back on our screens shortly.   Elba will star in four new 60-minute episodes, alongside Warren Brown and Ruth Wilson.  The first instalment of series three will feature John Luther (Elba) tackling a "twisted fetishist", who appears to be a copycat killer of an unsolved case from the '80s.
The  trailer for the new series can be seen below –






An interview with Idris Elba can also be found here.

Also according to Elba is due to join Javier Bardem, Sean Penn and Ray Winstone in the thriller The GunmanThe Gunman is based on the novel Prone Gunman by French author Jean-Patrick Manchette.

To celebrate playing Hercule Poirot for twenty-five years, David Suchet gives an fascinating interview in the Scotsman.

According to The Hollywood Reporter Channel 5 have picked up Stephen King’s Under the Dome.  It is due to be shown on Channel 5 in the fall.

According to the Radio Times, the TV series of Fargo which is based on the Coen brother's 1996 film is due to be filmed in Canada.  The series will be a 10 episode series and is due to be released in 2014.

If you are like me and are looking forward to the new Vin Diesel Riddick film then you will be pleased to see that a trailer has been released.  The trailer can be seen below –

Riddick: Rule The Dark is due to be released on September 6 2013.

According to Screenrant, Morgan Freeman is in talks to star in Luc Besson’s film Lucy which also stars Scarlett Johansson.

According to the BBC an all-star cast has been confirmed for the adaptation of Death Comes to Pemberley by P D James. The cast includes Jenna Coleman, James Fleet, Penelope Keith, James Norton and Trevor Eve to name a few.

Vanessa Redgrave and Olivia Colman are set to star in The Thirteenth Tale by Helen Setterfield. The 90 minute drama will be shown on BBC Two and is a haunting psychological mystery set in the modern day, with poignant flashbacks starting in 1940.  More information can be found here.  Filming started in June and it is due to be shown later on this year.

BBC Four have acquired Belgian thriller Salamander. Everyone has secrets. But these can bring down a nation. In a private Brussels bank, 66 safe-deposit boxes are raided. The owner of the bank wants to keep the thefts under wraps but police inspector Paul Gerardi catches wind of the affair. With his incorruptible, old-school morals and devil-may-care attitude, Gerardi throws himself into the investigation, and when some of the key players are murdered, commit suicide or vanish, soon realises just how big the case is.  Gerardi discovers that the victims are members of a secret organisation called Salamander, made up of the country's industrial, financial, judicial and political elite, and the safe-deposit boxes contained their most intimate secrets - secrets that could bring down the nation. As he becomes the target of both the criminals and the authorities, Gerardi must quickly find out what their agenda is. And who is behind the thefts... Salamander will be shown as 12 x 60 minute drama series.

Various dramas to look out for include Top of the Lake which is due to be shown on BBC Two and is a six part drama about a detective obsessively investigating the disappearance of a twelve year-old pregnant girl. Quirke which is based on the book by Benjamin Black is a three part series which takes us back to the 1950s Dublin.  Quirke, played by Gabriel Byrne, is the chief pathologist of the city morgue.  His attempts to solve sudden deaths take him from smokey damp alleys and whiskey bars to elegant moneyed houses. Quirke is due to be shown on BBC One.  Mark Gatiss is due to adapt The Tractate Middoth, an MR James ghost story for Christmas.  The Tractate Middoth is due to be shown on BBC Two.