Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Books to Look Forward to from Quercus Books

When Detective Sime Mackenzie boards a light aircraft at Montreal’s St. Hubert airfield, he does so without looking back.  For Sime, the 850-mile journey ahead represents an opportunity to escape the bitter blend of loneliness and regret that has come to characterise his life in the city.  Travelling as part of an eight-officer investigation team, Sime’s destination lies in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.  Only two kilometres wide and three long, Entry Island is home to a population of around 130 inhabitants – the wealthiest of which has just been discovered murdered in his home.  The investigation itself appears little more than a formality.  The evidence points to a crime of passion: the victim’s wife the vengeful culprit.  But for Sime the investigation is turned on its head when he comes face to face with the prime suspect, and is convinced that he knows her – even though they have never met.  Haunted by this certainty his insomnia becomes punctuated by dreams of a distant past on a Scottish island 3,000 miles away.  Dreams in which the widow plays a leading role.  Sime’s conviction becomes an obsession.  And in spite of mounting evidence of her guilt, he finds himself convinced of her innocence, leading to a conflict between the professional duty he must fulfil, and the personal destiny that awaits him.  Entry Island is due to be published in January 2014 and is a standalone novel by Peter May.

There is a leak in Wellington’s army, and suspicion is falling on James Keane . . . The Iberian Peninsula, 1809.  French troops led by one of Napoleon’s best generals are massing on the border.  Wellington’s outnumbered force and his unreliable Spanish allies need to pick off the smaller French units if they are to stand their ground.  For that, they need information: accurate intelligence on numbers, arms and whereabouts.  That’s where Captain Keane and his company of reformed scouting officers are invaluable tools – despite being unpopular with the regular soldiers.  However, it soon becomes apparent that someone high up in Wellington’s headquarters is a spy for the French.  Only someone able to travel widely outside the camp, someone privy to battle plans, could be the double agent – and Keane’s enemies within the army are quick to point the finger.  Keane must defend his crew against their accusers – or root out the traitor himself.  Keane’s Challenge is by Iain Gale and is due to be published in May 2014.

Sorrow Bound is the third book in the DS Aector McAvoy series by David Mark and is due to be published in March 2014.  Philippa Longman will do anything for her family.  Roisin McAvoy will do anything for her friends.  DS Aector McAvoy will do anything for his wife.  Yet each has an unknown enemy - one that will do anything to destroy them.  Sorrow Bound is a powerful police procedural thriller about how those with the biggest hearts make the easiest targets; and how the corrosive venom of evil can dissolve the bonds between good people, until all they are bound by is grief.

An isolated farm in rural post-apartheid South Africa is the scene of a suspicious death that brings a fraught community together in search of the truth.  De Wildt, North West South Africa.  A township is plunged into mourning when its elderly white doctor falls to her death.  The deceased, Ouma, passed her passion for justice to each one of the townspeople: every man and woman, black or white.  However, the apparent accident leaves two people with an inexplicable feeling of suspicion: one a 14-year-old girl with prodigious intuition, the other an ageing police chief.  Life has taught both to trust their instincts, and both have doubt in their gut.  As their fears grow stronger, and begin to filter through the community, a gradual shift takes place; and Ouma’s legacy develops from a town-wide commitment to preserve her memory, to a communal quest to uncover the truth . . .  The Savage Hour is by Elaine Proctor and is due to be published in June 2014.

Cairo is by Chris Womersley and is due to be published in February 2014.  Who wants to be the same as everyone else?  You don't want to be ordinary, do you?  At 18, Tom escapes ordinariness in small town Australia for Melbourne and a flat in a strange block named Cairo.  There he meets the magnetic Max Cheever, and is drawn into his circle of bohemian artists and dreamers.  Liberating him from the bourgeois aspirations of university, they fill his world with affection, passion, opinion and a feeling of belonging he never had before.  But all is not as idyllic as it seems.  Max is prepared to break all the rules to live freely, and soon Tom is ensnared in his plot to steal a million dollar Picasso masterpiece.  Among undependable forgers and violent art dealers, Tom trusts only in Max - even as he falls hopelessly in love with his beautiful wife...For in all the lessons he learns this summer, the greatest one will be to identify what is real - from what is fake.

The Truth about the Harry Quebert Affair by Joël Dicker and it is due to be published in May 2014.  August 30, 1975.  The day of the disappearance.  The day a small New Hampshire town lost its innocence.  That summer Harry Quebert fell in love with fifteen-year-old Nola Kellergan.  Thirty-three years later, her body is dug up from his yard along with a manuscript copy of his career-defining novel.  Quebert is the only suspect.  Marcus Goldman - Quebert's most gifted protégé - throws off his writer's block to save his mentor from the electric chair.  Solving the case and penning a new bestseller soon blur together.  As his book begins to take on a life of its own, the nation is gripped by the mystery of 'The Girl Who Touched the Heart of America'.  But with Nola, in death as in life, nothing is ever as it seems.

The Caravaggio Conspiracy is by Alex Connor and is due to be published in January 2014.  1608. Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, the greatest Italian painter of his day, is expelled from the Order of the Knights of Malta.  Subject to a clandestine hearing, his crime remains a closely guarded secret.  2014. Two bodies are found in a London art gallery - stripped naked, necks bound with wire and legs obscenely contorted.  They are twin brothers - successful art dealers - their brutal murder linked to the mysterious disappearance of two paintings by the master Caravaggio.  Investigators are confounded, and it falls to art expert Gil Eckhart to identify the killer before he slays again.  But as the search for clues takes him from the glamorous skyline of New York to the fetid catacombs of Palermo, Eckhart finds that in the high-stakes world of art, good and evil are often tarred with the same, blood-soaked, brush.

Hong Kong, August 2017.  On the eve of a crisis summit for world economic leaders, two Chinese Methodist ministers are killed in an apparently motiveless execution in Hong Kong's financial district.  Luck makes Detective Alex Soong one of the first officers at the scene.  Yet Soong begins to suspect his involvement to be more than incidental, and the crime itself more than a senseless assassination: an instinct that is proven correct when Soong is contacted by a mysterious figure, and more massacres follow.  With the eyes of the world's media fixed on Hong Kong, Soong must race to intercept his tormentor, and thwart a conspiracy born from one of the bloodiest confrontations of China's past, which now threatens to destroy a fragile world order.  Emperors Once More is by Duncan Jepson and is due to be published in March 2014.

Murder is by Sarah Pinborough and is due to be published in May 2014.  Dr Bond is back . . . and a trail of gruesome murders leads to his front door.  Dr Thomas Bond, Police Surgeon, is still recovering from the events of the previous year when Jack the Ripper haunted the streets of London – and a more malign enemy hid in his shadow.  Bond and the others who worked on the gruesome case are still stalked by its legacies, both psychological and tangible.  But now the bodies of children are being pulled from the Thames . . . and Bond is about to become inextricably linked with an uncanny, undying enemy.

London, November 1968.  Judy Garland is performing drunk at the Palladium.  Detective Sergeant Cathal Breen is working late at Marylebone CID.  Called to a gas explosion in Maida Vale, Breen finds a shock buried beneath the rubble.  Mind-bending paintings by Bridget Riley and Peter Blakes – and the garrotted body of one Jacob Lakin: drug user, and boyfriend to ‘Groovy Bob’ Fraser.  Fraser – Pop Art Gallery owner and friend to the Stones – is a god in a world Breen has never understood.  He tips Breen off to the squat where Lakin’s dealer lives, but Breen’s only chance of infiltrating is WPC Helen Tozer.  She’s working out her notice, and their brief love affair seems to have died.  But she can get the hippies to talk, and one woman – a victim of free love – begins to trust in her.  For even the young and beautiful, have dark secrets.  And on the search for Lakin’s killer, they risk trespassing too far into a new and treacherous world.  House of Flies is by William Shaw and is due to be published in June 2014.

Talking to Ghosts is by Herve Le Corre and is due to be published in February 2014.  Police Inspector Vilar is a broken man.  His son was snatched away at the school gate and his marriage collapsed soon after.  Now he keeps watch outside the school every morning, his 9mm pistol resting on the passenger seat.  A case comes his way - Victor, a troubled teenager, returns home from school to find his mother's lifeless body, savagely beaten, almost unrecognisable.  As Victor is sent first to a care home, then to a foster family, Vilar hits a familiar brick wall: nothing stolen, no fingerprints, no D.N.A.  Finally the case begins to develop, but in an altogether more sinister direction.  A stalker is watching Victor from the shadows, while Vilar receives increasingly threatening phone calls about his son.  The hunter has become the hunted, and Vilar begins to realise that this investigation will strike very close to home.

When nightfall’s, fear spreads...The Lake District: a wild landscape, rife with stories.  Detectives Zoe Barnes and Sam Taylor are called to investigate the disappearance of two children.  But they quickly realise they have been drawn into a complex and unnerving case that hides a much darker intent: as they dig deeper, whispers grow of a community hiding a deadly secret - and talk of witches, the like of which hasn't been heard since the seventeenth century, is spreading.  Zoe and Sam will have to work fast to save lives; but in this atmosphere of fear and mistrust, can they even rely on each other?  A Cry in the Night is by Tom Grieves and is due to be published in January 2014.

The Last Patient is the first in a crime series about the new, disillusioned Robin Hood of Skid Row, Los Angeles.  Dr Adam Knox returns from the war in Afghanistan a little rougher, a little wiser and a lot more inclined to kick it to the ones at the top.  He sets up a clinic in Los Angeles’ most notorious district, tending to the vagrant and the vulnerable.  A Romanian woman and her son are on the run from traffickers; but their freedom comes at a price – too high, or too deadly – to pay.  Knox thinks he can help.  But he’s also got a private commission from a richer patient – a dubious businessman willing to spend extra for his discretion.  Playing one team against another, gangsters and traffickers, Knox must keep his wits scalpel–sharp.  The Last Patient is by Peter Spiegelman and is due to be published in May 2014.

The Outcast Dead is by Elly Griffiths and is due to be published in January 2014.  Forensic
archaeologist Ruth Galloway has excavated a body from the grounds of Norwich Castle, a forbidding edifice that was once a prison.  She believes the body may be that of infamous Victorian murderess Jemima Green.  Called Mother Hook for her claw-like hand, Jemima was hanged in 1867 for the murder of five children in her care.  DCI Harry Nelson has no time for long-dead killers.  Immersed in the case of three infants found dead, one after the other, in their King's Lynn home, he's convinced that a family member is responsible, though others on his team think differently.  Then a child goes missing.  Could the abduction be linked to the long-dead Mother Hook?  Ruth is pulled into the case, and back towards Nelson.

Two months after the suspicious and much-publicized death of his father on the island of Martha's Vineyard, it is taking all of Adam Blaine's character to suture the deep wounds - both within his family and himself - torn open by the tragedy.  Moreover, as the court inquest into Benjamin Blaine's death continues, it is taking all of Adam's cunning to protect
those closest to him from figures who still suspect that Adam's father was murdered by one of his kin.  But the sternest test of all is Adam's proximity to Carla Pacelli - his late father's mistress; and a woman who, despite being pivotal to his family's plight, Adam finds himself increasingly drawn to.  The closer he gets to this beautiful, mysterious woman, the further Adam feels from his troubles.  Yet the closer he also comes to revealing the secrets he's strived to conceal, and condemning the people he's so hard fought to protect.  Eden in Winter is by Richard North Patterson and is due to be published in March 2014.

Into A Raging Blaze is the debut novel by Andreas Norman and is due to be published in February 2014.  Carina Dymek is on a fast track for promotion at the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, when she is approached by a stranger and given a USB stick containing a report to circulate in her department.  Unwittingly, she delivers a time bomb of classified information that destroys her career and puts her on the radar of the security service, SAPO.  Tasked with discovering how Dymek gained access to the confidential report, the formidable Bente Jensen of SAPO begins investigating her background and finds that Dymek's boyfriend Jamal is an Egyptian Swedish national.  But British MI6 have a vested interest in the leak, and they're quick to muscle in.  When they uncover evidence that links Jamal's family to an extreme faction within the Muslim Brotherhood, SAPO is forced to bow to their command to track him down.  As Bente liaises with the ruthless MI6, she becomes closer to the secretive plans contained in that leaked report: plans for a Europe-wide Intelligence Service.  She begins to understand that Dymek is a red herring in a far more complex plot: one of surveillance corruption, national security and global anti-terrorism.

Bruno, chef de police in the French town of St Denis, receives a call from an undercover cop only hours before his body is discovered.  But Bruno’s sometime boss and rival, the Brigadier, doesn’t see this as a priority – there are bigger issues at stake.  Meanwhile, a Muslim youth named Sami turns up at a French army base in Afghanistan hoping to get to St Denis, and an American woman appears in the town with a warrant for Sami’s extradition.  Bruno must unravel these mysteries and find his own way to protect his town and its people.  Children of War is by Peter Walker and is due to be published in June 2014.

The Second Deadly Sin is by Åsa Larsson and is due to be published in January 2014.  At the end of a deadly bear hunt across the wilderness of Northern Sweden, the successful hunters are shaken by a horrifying discovery.  Across in Kurravaara, a woman is murdered with horrific brutality: crude abuse scrawled above her bloodied bed, her young grandson nowhere to be found.  Only Rebecka Martinsson sees a connection.  Dropped from the case thanks to a jealous rival, she now stands alone against a killer who brings death to young and old, spawned by a horrifying crime that festers after one hundred years on ice.
For Commandant Verhoeven life is beautiful: he is happily married, expecting his first child with the lovely Irene.  However, his blissful existence is punctured by a murder of unprecedented savagery.  Worse still, the press seem to have it in for him - his every move is headline news.  When he discovers that the killer has killed before - that each murder is a homage to a classic crime novel - the fourth estate are quick to coin a nickname...The Novelist...With both men in the public eye, the case develops into a personal duel, each hell-bent on outsmarting the other.  There can only be one winner - whoever has the least to lose... Irène is by Pierre Lemaitre and is due to be published in February 2014.

Judges is three crime stories by Italy’s most renowned crime writers Camilleri, best known for the Inspector Montalbano series, weaves a tale of a Turin judge who moves to a small Sicilian town, and tackles both entrenched mafia corruption and a string of culinary delicacies.  Lucarelli brings us a far darker tale.  “La Bambina” is a beautiful young judge, whose attempts to expose the complicity of the secret service in money laundering lead to multiple attempts on her life, and a desperate struggle for justice.  De Cataldo, a judge himself, tells a tale of an unending feud between a prosecutor and a mayor, set against the background of murder, sleaze and impenetrable bureaucracy.  Judges is due to be published in May 2014.

In Killing Well by Marco Malvaldi Italy’s first celebrity chef turns detective to save the life of a Tuscan aristocrat.  The nineteenth century is drawing to a close.  Pellegrino Artusi has travelled the length and breadth of Italy compiling his masterpiece, The Science of Cooking and The Art of Eating Well.  When Baron Romualdo Bonaiuti invites him to his Tuscan home to compare notes with his kitchen staff, he’s quite looking forward to a break.  On arrival, he finds everything one might expect: a dramatic Tuscan castle, eccentric aristocrats, spinster aunts and a mysterious guest.  Not to mention a murdered butler.  Faced with a menagerie of suspects, the local constabulary are baffled.  But when the Baron himself is the target of a second murder attempt, Pellegrino realises he may need to put his celebrated culinary skills to use to find the killer.  Killing Well  is due to be published in June 2014.

Dodger of the Dials is by James Benmore and is due to be published in May 2014.  Two years on from the events of Dodger, Jack Dawkins is back as top-sawyer with his own gang of petty thieves from Seven Dials.  But crime in London has become a serious business – and when Jack needs protection, he soon finds himself out of his depth and facing the gallows for murder.  The evidence against him seems insurmountable, until a young reporter by the name of Oliver Twist takes up his cause.  After freeing Jack from gaol, the pair must bury their past differences and join forces to hunt down the men who framed Jack and stole that which he treasures most.

No comments: