Sunday 29 May 2022

In The Lyme Crime Spotlight: Jack Jordan

 Name:- Jack Jordan

Job:- Author and Tutor

Twitter:- @JackJordanBooks


Jack Jordan is the author of five books and one novella. He is also a self-confessed bibliomaniac. He tutors at The Novelry. 

Current book?

I’m currently reading Sarah Pearse’s next blockbuster thriller, The Retreat! Those who loved The Sanatorium will absolutely love this.

Favourite book:-

Such a tough one! I’d have to say Fingersmith by Sarah Waters. Waters perfectly blends commercial fiction with literary flair, combining a whiplash-invoking pace of plot with deep character exploration. The twisting, deceptive narrative is practically impossible to predict, throwing off even the most practised sleuth!

Which two characters would you invite to dinner and why?

Ooooh! I would invite Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games to find out how her life has been after her battles in the Games. I would then ask Harry Cane from Patrick Gale’s A Place Called Winter to hear his spellbinding story from his own lips.

How do you relax?

Sugary food and reality TV! I am a sucker for The Real Housewives. Although I’d say I only really relax one week of the year when I go on holiday abroad. I love nothing more than lying in the sun with a good book!

What book do you wish you had written and why?

The Girls by Emma Cline. Cline takes the infamous story of the Mason Murders and injects life into the characters in ways that had been saturated from the legend, particularly Manson’s Girls, revealing the innocence deep within the monsters they ultimately became. I am so in love with it that I can’t bring myself to write a cult-themed novel because I know that it would never be able to live up to my appreciation of The Girls!

What would you say to your younger self if you were just starting out as an author?

My journey as a writer has been filled with many ups and downs, including many points where it might have been more logical to quit rather than continue with my dogged perseverance! So, I would tell my younger self to persevere with the knowledge that all of my dreams will come true and allow myself to sleep more soundly!

Why do you prefer to write standalone books as opposed to a series and would you consider writing a series?

The ideas for my books always tend to be rather different to each of their respective predecessors, so it’s always made more sense to have them separate from one another. I like the freedom of not knowing where I might explore next! I also put my characters through hell in my books, so if I were to carry a character through a series, putting them through hellish situation after hellish situation, I fear I’d have readers writing in to ask me to cut my poor characters some slack!

What are you looking forward to at Lyme Crime?

Getting to meet the readers and sign copies of Do No Harm! I’m also really looking forward to visiting Lyme Regis for the first time. I’d go as far as to say that Lyme Crime wins for best crime festival location in the UK events circuit! Who doesn’t love their crime with a sea view?!

Do No Harm by Jack Jordan (Simon and Schuster) 

My child has been taken. And I've been given a choice - kill a patient on the operating table, or never see my son again. The man lies on the table in front of me. As a surgeon, it's my job to save him. As a mother, I know I must kill him. You might think that I'm a monster. But there really is only one choice. I must get away with murder. Or I will never see my son again. I've saved many lives. Would you trust me with yours?

You can also find Jack Jordan on TikTok – jackjordan_author and on Instagram @jackjordan_author and on Facebook

Tickets can be bought here:-

Saturday 28 May 2022

St Hilda's Crime and Mystery Weekend - Town and Country: Green Lanes to Mean Streets

St Hilda's Crime and Mystery Weekend is taking place from 12 – 14 August 2022.  

We have an homage to Mo Hayder by Nadine Matheson, an expose of rural noir by S.A. Cosby, an evening with Mick Herron (on Slow Horses) and Elly Griffiths (on Cold Comfort Farm).

Peter May is talking about his early influences. 

Ann Cleeves is looking at the Human Geography of Crime.

Philip Gooden has penned our Murder Mystery with roles performed by crime writers, and special prizes to be won.

Plus intriguing and entertaining talks by Imran Mahmood, Abir Mukherjee, Beth Lewis, Greg Buchanan, Leye Adenle, Anna Bailey, Anthony J Quinn, Trevor Wood and William Shaw. 

It is going to be spectacular!

You can book to attend in person, either the whole weekend or just Friday night with Mick and Elly (and a three-course dinner). 

Accommodation is available, and meals can be booked at the college (where the food is delicious and vegan options are available).

The full programme is here.

More details and links to ticket sales can be found here.

Friday 27 May 2022

Crime Writers of Canada announces the 2022 Awards of Excellence


Crime Writers of Canada (CWC) have announced the winners for the 2022 Crime Writers of Canada Awards of Excellence in Canadian Crime Writing. Started in 1984, the annual Crime Writers of Canada Awards of Excellence, then known as the Arthur Ellis Awards, recognizes the best in mystery, crime, and suspense fiction, and crime nonfiction by Canadian authors.

The presentation of the winners can be viewed on CWC’s YouTube channel: 

Best Crime Novel sponsored by Rakuten Kobo, with a $1000 prize

Under an Outlaw Moon by Dietrich Kalteis ECW Press

Best Crime First Novel sponsored by Writers First, with a $500 prize

The Push by Ashley Audrain Viking Canada

The Whodunit Award for Best Traditional Mystery sponsored by Jane Doe, with a $500 prize

What’s the Matter with Mary Jane? By Candas Jane Dorsey ECW Press

The Howard Engel Award for Best Crime Novel Set in Canada sponsored by The Engel Family, with a $500 prize

Beneath Her Skin by C. S. Porter, Vagrant Press / Nimbus Publishing Inc.

Best Crime Novella sponsored by Mystery Magazine, with a $200 prize

Letters From Johnny by Wayne Ng Guernica Editions

Best Crime Short Story sponsored by Mystery Magazine, with a $300 prize

Number 10 Marlborough Place by Elizabeth Elwood Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine

Best French Crime Book (Fiction and Nonfiction) 

Flots by Patrick Senécal, Editions Alire

Best Juvenile or YA Crime Book (Fiction and Nonfiction) sponsored by Shaftesbury, with a $500 prize

The Traitor's Blade by Kevin Sands Aladdin (Simon & Schuster)

The Brass Knuckles Award for Best Nonfiction Crime Book sponsored by Simpson & Wellenreiter LLP, Hamilton, with a $300 prize

The Beatle Bandit by Nate Hendley Dundurn Press

The Award for Best Unpublished Manuscript sponsored by ECW Press, with a $500 prize

Elmington by Renee Lehnen

About Crime Writers of Canada

Crime Writers of Canadawas founded in 1982 as a professional organization designed to raise the profile of Canadian crime writers. Members include authors, publishers, editors, booksellers, librarians, reviewers, and literary agents as well as many developing authors. Past winners of the Awards have included major names in Canadian crime writing such as Mario Bolduc, Gail Bowen, Stevie Cameron, Howard Engel, Barbara Fradkin, Louise Penny, Peter Robinson and Eric Wright.

Second Wife Syndrome by Julia Crouch

Like most (all?) crime writers, I love Daphne Du Maurier’s Rebecca. 

When Du Maurier was working on the novel, she told her publisher Victor Gollancz that it was ‘a sinister tale about a woman who marries a widower ...Psychological and rather macabre’. While I am in no way claiming parity with one of the great classics of twentieth century fiction, Rebecca was, in no small way, one of the inspirations for my new novel, The Daughters.

I love Rebecca’s nameless flawed narrator: the young second wife, an ingenue, who has no idea what she is getting herself into, the house of monsters she is entering. The pressure she feels to fill Rebecca’s perfect shoes and her lack of insight into her own role for Maxim are at once infuriating and heartbreaking. She is, as Olivia Laing says in her Guardian article, Sex, jealousy and gender: Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca 80 years on, ‘raw as an egg’. 

In The Daughters, I take the young second wife out of Mandalay, place her in a contemporary Muswell Hill eco-house and give her a modern, feminist twist. My Carys, therefore, is a professional woman who has got where she is by hard work, not birth or chance. She is mixed-race, northern and working class and when she meets her much older future husband Bill she is starting out in a profession (architecture) where finding anyone with just one of those attributes is a rarity, let alone all three combined into one person. She is also living with a woman at this point, so her decision to have a relationship with Bill is a very active choice on her part. 

Indeed, where the second Mrs de Winter’s passivity is one of her driving forces, Carys is all about action. She cares. She works hard to help her younger stepdaughter Lucy through the trauma that still reverberates after her mother Alice’s supposed suicide twelve years earlier. 

So far, so likeable and perfect for Carys.

But there are Alice’s shoes to fill, both literally – Carys wears Alice’s dog-walking boots to walk Alice’s dog – and metaphorically. Like the first Mrs de Winter, Alice was on the surface a class act. A pioneering GP who set up a revolutionary health centre in Hackney combining NHS and complementary therapies for the local low-income families, she was also an accomplished artist and keen botanist. on top of all this, she was also a loving and caring mother to her daughters, Lucy and the older Sara (there was a lost baby boy in between the girls). Everybody loved Alice. She is a tough act to follow.

To make things even harder for Carys, I also watch her through Sara’s eyes. Sara is – if you squint and give me a long piece of rope – the Mrs Danvers of the plot. She is just a couple of years younger than her stepmother, which is an potentially incendiary situation in itself. But, when, at the beginning of the novel, we learn that Sara has discovered there are questions about Alice’s supposed suicide, that the coffin she and her little sister wept over at the funeral was in fact empty, the existing cracks in the relationship between Carys and Sara expand into ravines. 

So what did happen to Alice? 

And what, Sara wonders, was the sequence of events leading up to Carys and Bill getting together? She has always thought that her stepmother moved into the family home with unseemly haste after Alice’s death. But now she smells a big stinking rat about everything that happened back then.

Is Carys the perfect being she presents to the world?

While the questions about the circumstances around Alice’s and Rebecca’s deaths are raised at different narrative points, the idea that both of the dead first wives may have been too good to be true is at the heart of each novel. Also, both the second Mrs de Winter and Carys are seen by members of their new households as arrivistes – the first because of her utter lack of sophistication, the second because of her colour, class and accent. Indeed, Carys meets Bill when she is on student placement at the celebrated architecture practice he runs. Both women marry in and marry up. 

I can’t say any more, because – and this is one of the great drawbacks of discussing crime fiction – that would involve spoilers. But I hope that you will go some way to enjoying The Daughters just as much as I do Rebecca, and that you will find the ending just as unexpected and twisting.

The Daughters by Julia Crouch (Bookouture) Out Now

My father said my mother killed herself. My sister says he’s lying. The day of our mother’s funeral, my little sister Lucy and I clung to our father’s side. He promised he’d get us through it, and we believed him. But then I discovered that the coffin we wept over was empty. Dad says he was trying to protect us – that he thought it would be easier to grieve if we didn’t know our mother’s body was never found. His new wife says she just wants to help us move on from the past. Then Lucy has a flash of memory that leaves her shaking. Our father. A woman she doesn’t recognise. A knife… She insists she knows something about the day our mother died, but it’s buried too deep to see clearly. What happened to our mother? I need to find the truth. But I have no idea who I can trust. And what if the answer puts my life in danger?

More information about Julia Crouch and her work can be found on her website. You can also find her on Twitter @thatjuliacrouch and on Instagram @juliageek. She can also be found on Facebook.

Thursday 26 May 2022

Anna Smith - from investigative journalist to crime writer

As a frontline daily newspaper journalist for more than twenty years, I encountered at first hand dozens of characters that could have walked into any crime novel.

From Glasgow hard men ruling their criminal empires, to Loyalist and Republican paramilitaries on the streets of Belfast; from gangsters living the champagne life on the Costa del Sol, to young female heroin addicts propped up in shop doorways selling their bodies for sex. Throw in a few dodgy cops and lawyers and you’ve got a raft of material that might make a novel. 

I worked at the Daily Record for more than 20 years – ten of them as Chief Reporter, travelling the world to cover conflicts from Rwanda to Kosovo. So many of the stories and the harrowing cruelty I witnessed have stayed with me, so whenever I’m writing about the struggle of refugees fleeing their homeland, I can call up so many haunting images. 

It was these images and memories of my days as a reporter that compelled me to embark on my first series of crime novels, featuring the Rosie Gilmour character, a gritty Glasgow journalist who tears down the walls of corruption to get her story in the newspaper. 

When you write from your own experience like that, basing the character on many of your own traits, you are forced to expose yourself in ways you wouldn’t have to when you are reporting for a newspaper.

Although writing fiction was a departure from what I did as a reporter, I wasn’t really fazed by having to create a character a bit like myself—though not exactly like myself, I should stress! I write as honestly as I can, and I hope it comes across in my novels. 

The method of creating the Rosie Gilmour novels had to be different from a police procedural crime novel, where the objective of the story is to nail the criminal and put him/her behind bars. But for a journalist, the procedure is to investigate the story, follow the leads, gather the evidence, and finally expose the perpetrator on the front page of the newspaper. I approached each novel as I would a newspaper investigation, only the aim here was to create a work of fiction that would resonate with readers.

I rested Rosie for a bit to shift into the gangland genre and created a reluctant woman gangland boss in the shape of Kerry Casey, who takes over the reins of her Glasgow crime family. I really enjoyed the characters who walked into these novels and have been delighted at how popular this genre is. 

My latest series features Glasgow ex-female cop turned private eye, Billie Carlson, who’s half Swedish, half Glasgow-Irish, with a haunted backstory that makes her a desolate kind of figure. The novel is told in the first person, so I hope it pulls the reader in from page one. I’m really enjoying exploring the characters Billie meets as she takes on a case, and she doesn’t always use conventional practices. She has her own moral code that doesn't always match the police's. Billie is her own woman and if she thinks the end game is worth pursuing, she will always do it her way.

Until I Find You by Anna Smith (Quercus Books) Out Now.

When you've lost everything, you'll stop at nothing Billie Carlson left the police force under a cloud. Once a promising young officer she now works as a private investigator, rooting out insurance scams and spying on cheating spouses. One morning a distraught young woman comes into her office saying that her baby has been stolen. Her story seems unbelievable, yet something about her makes Billie want to help - Billie knows what it's like to lose someone too. To get to the bottom of the case Billie must rattle some dangerous cages and rely on old police friends for inside help. Soon she discovers a network of crime deeper and far more twisted than she ever could have imagined. But is she in way over her head?

More information about Anna Smith and her work can be found on her website. You can also find her on Twitter @annasmithauthor You can also find her on Facebook.

Kathy Wang on Imposter Syndrome


The concept for Impostor Syndrome is simple. It asks: what if one of the world's most powerful female technology executives was in fact a foreign spy?

The spy in my novel is a woman named Julia Lerner. Julia’s the COO of Tangerine, a social media and internet giant. When she was placed in the US, Julia’s handlers thought she’d just have a sort of middle class life in the Bay Area. So her ascension to her current level is really a result of her own work and skill.

What the book explores then, is what happens when Julia’s asked to put her job and position in danger, in order to fulfil the requests from the motherland. As by this time, Julia has made for herself an incredible life in the United States: lots of money, an important job where she’s fawned over, a very handsome new husband. Does she put that all at risk and obey orders? Or try and wrest back some control from her handlers?

At the same time, there is a lower level employee at Tangerine, Alice Lu, who one day comes across some unusual activity with the servers. Alice starts to try and figure out who might be stealing data from the company, and that starts a cat and mouse chase between the two women.

This book explores ideas around motherhood, career, money, internet privacy, and espionage - all topics I am interested in. However it is also a love letter to democracy. My parents were immigrants from Taiwan, and they always reminded me that regardless of the many flaws of the US, it was one of the greatest countries on earth. And I wanted to explore that in the novel, the idea that yes, we have these agencies like the CIA and the FBI but that in fact one of our most powerful tools for our national security is that we have democratic processes, we have freedom of speech, we have people from all over the world who come and live here. Alice is herself an immigrant from China, a country that in real life is having escalating tensions with the United States - but in this case, she is the one actually chasing Julia, who is the Russian agent. And Julia herself is conflicted, because deep down she really likes her life in California. She likes her beautiful house. She likes her husband. She likes living as an American as it were, with all its freedoms.

Kathy Wang is the author of Impostor Syndrome (VERVE Books) Out Now

Julia Lerner is one of the most powerful people in Silicon Valley and an icon to professional women across the country. She is the COO of Tangerine, one of America's biggest technology companies. She is also a Russian spy. Julia has been carefully groomed to reach the upper echelons of the company and use Tangerine's software to covertly funnel information back to Russia's largest intelligence agency. Alice Lu works as a low-level analyst within Tangerine, having never quite managed to climb the corporate ladder. One afternoon, when performing a server check, Alice discovers some unusual activity and is burdened with two powerful but distressing suspicions: Tangerine's privacy settings aren't as rigorous as the company claims they are and the person abusing this loophole might be Julia Lerner herself. Now, she must decide what to do with this information - before Julia finds out she has it.

More information about Kathy Wang and her work can be found on her website. You can also follow her on Twitter @bykathywang. 

Wednesday 25 May 2022

2022 Wilbur Smith Adventure Writing Prize shortlist


The following six authors are all in the running for the £10,000 prize. Click on each of their names to find out more about the book and read an interview with the author:

The Apollo Murders by Chris Hadfield (Quercus)

Where Blood Runs Cold by Giles Kristian (Bantam Press, Transworld Publishers)

The Vacation by John Marrs (Pan, Pan Macmillan)

The Plant Hunter by T.L. Mogford (Welbeck Publishing Group)

Sankofa by Chibundu Onuzo (Virago, Little, Brown Book Group)

Moonlight and the Pearler's Daughter by Lizzie Pook (Mantle, Pan Macmillan)

Submissions were open to writers of any nationality, writing in English. Authors from Nigeria, Canada, the UK and UK/Norway are represented on the shortlist, the six being selected from a total of 129 submissions.

Niso Smith, Founder, commented:

‘It’s uplifting to see debut and established authors alike embracing their sense of adventure. Adventures are about growth and living in the moment, and these authors all transport us to a specific moment in time. Whether we’re skiing in the bitter cold of northern Norway, or sailing up China’s Yangtze River, our disbelief is magically suspended.

The authors demonstrate determination, show us true jeopardy, pique our curiosity and allow us to form a human connection with their characters. Congratulations to all six for these riveting novels.’

The Prize works with a panel of librarians and library staff from across the UK to select the shortlist which focuses on ‘An Adventure for Everyone.’ The Foundation encourages readers to select the one that appeals to them most, then read, share and recommend. Readers can download the shortlist poster here and share with their library, bookshop, or in their living room window.

These six titles are now with this year's judging panel. As part of an online campaign over the summer months, you will be invited to participate in the Reader's Vote, which will see the readers' votes equate to one seat on the judging panel. The campaign will also include a series of online author events plus engagement opportunities for libraries and reading groups.

Read what the idea of adventure means to the judges here.

The winner of the Best Published Novel will be revealed on 21st September 2022 at an online awards ceremony. Keep up to date with all activity in the meantime via our twitter @Wilbur_Niso_Fdn.

Cover Story: The Life of Crime – by Martin Edwards

Writers like me hate to admit it, but when it comes to selling books, the cover artwork is just as important as the contents. Booksellers make judgments about what to stock based on the cover artwork they see in publishers’ catalogues. Book buyers, too, are drawn to some covers rather than others. And the same is even true online, where the ‘thumbnail’ image of a book poses special design challenges. So when I was working on my history of crime fiction, The Life of Crime, I kept wondering how my publishers, HarperCollins, would approach the question of the cover.

I was truly delighted to be told that the brief had been given to Steve Leard. Steve is a freelance graphic designer based in Plymouth, specialising in book design, branding and illustration. After initially getting his break in the publishing world by working at Bloomsbury, he now regularly designs covers for publishers both large and small and around the world. I was already familiar with his meticulous approach because he’d designed the wonderful artwork for a previous book of mine. This was Howdunit, a book about the art and graft of crime writing which I put together to celebrate the Detection Club’s ninetieth birthday – so it contained essays by ninety different writers.

Sometimes,’ Steve explained, ‘the challenge itself is actually the key to solving the design problem. With so many names to fit on one cover, a device was needed to carry them all. Crime covers often use certain tropes to identify the genre, so using a fingerprint on a crime cover isn't exactly ground-breaking, but trying to use it in a different way to give this book a twist seemed like a good idea and could help to house all of the names. I liked the idea of seeing the cover from across the bookshop or as a small thumbnail on Amazon and initially seeing something suggesting a fingerprint, but then the closer you look you realise it’s actually made of lots of names.

The practicalities are all-important, Steve explained: ‘I initially created the design on the computer using Illustrator. From early on in the process I was keen to create a rubber stamp to physically print the design, which would add to the feel of it being an actual fingerprint. This could have been achieved to a degree on the computer, but for me, you can’t beat physically producing work away from the computer to achieve a better result. It may seem like a small detail to some, but those details mean everything really. Once the cover had been approved by the publishers, I contacted Blade Rubber Stamps in London, who turned the design into a rubber stamp, which I then printed and scanned back onto the computer.

 I suggested to him that another challenge was to retain the simplicity of the design, which is what gives the cover its strength. ‘Yes,’ Steve said. ‘It’s quite unusual in trade publishing to have no hierarchy on the cover, so not clearly having the title of the book large and clearly defined. Credit for this has to go to Claire Ward – the Art Director at Harper Collins. I’m still not sure how she managed to get this cover approved without any major changes, but I’m very pleased she did!’ Me too. The book proceeded to win the H.R.F. Keating award and was nominated for four other major prizes in Britain and the US.

The Life of Crime is a very different book, in that the contents are all my own work, rather than a combination of pieces by ninety different authors. Given that the scope of the book is wide-ranging, it made sense for Steve to focus on a relatively simple (yet eye-catching) image to give a flavour of the book, rather than trying to reflect the complexity of the genre’s evolution since the late eighteenth century, since that might risk creating an impression of clutter.

After the success of Howdunit,’ Steve says, ‘I wanted The Life of Crime to feel part of the same design family, so when the design had been approved I once again had a rubber stamp made to give that textured feel that worked so well on the previous book. Like Howdunit, the challenge with this cover was creating something that fits into the crime/thriller market, but not heavily relying on genre tropes and cliches. I wanted this book to feel big and iconic, to reflect the fact that it is the first major history of crime fiction in 50 years.

As I’m writing this article ahead of publication, I’ve no idea how critics and readers will react to The Life of Crime. But at least I’m confident of one thing. It looks good on the shelf!

The Life of Crime by Martin Edwards (HarperCollins) Out 26th May 2022.

In the first major history of crime fiction in fifty years, The Life of Crime: Detecting the History of Mysteries and their Creators traces the evolution of the genre from the eighteenth century to the present, offering brand-new perspective on the world's most popular form of fiction. Author Martin Edwards is a multi-award-winning crime novelist, the President of the Detection Club, archivist of the Crime Writers' Association and series consultant to the British Library's highly successful series of crime classics, and therefore uniquely qualified to write this book. He has been a widely respected genre commentator for more than thirty years, winning the CWA Diamond Dagger for making a significant contribution to crime writing in 2020, when he also compiled and published Howdunit: A Masterclass in Crime Writing by Members of the Detection Club and the novel Mortmain Hall. His critically acclaimed The Golden Age of Murder (Collins Crime Club, 2015) was a landmark study of Detective Fiction between the wars. The Life of Crime is the result of a lifetime of reading and enjoying all types of crime fiction, old and new, from around the world. In what will surely be regarded as his magnum opus, Martin Edwards has thrown himself undaunted into the breadth and complexity of the genre to write an authoritative - and readable - study of its development and evolution. With crime fiction being read more widely than ever around the world, and with individual authors increasingly the subject of extensive academic study, his expert distillation of more than two centuries of extraordinary books and authors - from the tales of E.T.A. Hoffmann to the novels of Patricia Cornwell - into one coherent history is an extraordinary feat and makes for compelling reading.

More information about Martin Edwards and his work can be found on his website. You can also follow himon Twitter @medwardsbooks and also on Facebook.

Monday 23 May 2022

Ian Rankin and Mick Herron in conversation at St Giles-in-the-Fields

 Ian Rankin and Mick Herron


Wednesday 8th June 2022

18:30 at St Giles-in-the-Fields, 

60 St Giles High St, London, WC2H 8LG

Join bestselling crime and thriller authors Ian Rankin and Mick Herron as they celebrate the publication of their books The Dark Remains (co-written with William McIlvanney) and Bad Actors.

 Mick’s eighth instalment of Slough House thriller, Bad Actors, finds Jackson Lamb embroiled in double dealing and the hunt for a missing agent as the rest of the slow horses add their own distinctively chaotic magic to the mix. William McIlvanney’s pioneering Laidlaw series changed the face of crime fiction, including inspiring the creation of Rebus. When he died in 2015, McIlvanney left an unfinished manuscript portraying Laidlaw’s first case; now, Ian Rankin has completed his idol’s novel, bringing to life the criminal world of 1970s Glasgow, and Laidlaw's relentless quest for truth, in The Dark Remains.

Mick Herron is the Sunday Times bestselling author of the Slough House thrillers, which have won two CWA Daggers, been published in 20 languages, and are the basis of a major TV series starring Gary Oldman as Jackson Lamb. He is also the author of the Zoë Boehm series, and the standalone novels Reconstruction and This is What Happened.

Ian’s first novel Summer Rites remains in his bottom drawer, but his second novel, The Flood, was published in 1986, while his first Rebus novel, Knots & Crosses, was published in 1987. The Rebus series is now translated into twenty-two languages and the books are bestsellers on several continents. A regular contributor to BBC2’s Newsnight Review, he also presented his own TV series, Ian Rankin’s Evil Thoughts on Channel 4 in 2002 and Rankin on the Staircase for BBC Four in 2005. The Dark Remains has been shortlisted for The British Book Awards 2022 Crime and Thriller Book of the Year.

Please note: tickets including a copy of The Dark Remains will be paperback (RRP £8.99) and tickets including Bad Actors will be hardback (RRP £18.99). Both authors will be signing books at the end of the event.

More information about the event and how to buy tickets can be found here

In the Lyme Crime Spotlight: William Shaw

Name:- William Shaw

Job: Journalist and Author


Twitter: @William1shaw


William Shaw is the author of two different series. The DS Alex Cupidi series which is set in Dungerness where DS Cupidi works in the Kent Serious Crime Squad, and The Breen and Tozer series which is set in 1968/69 London. He is also the author of the standlone novels The Birdwatcher written as William Shaw and Dead Rich written as G W Shaw.

Current book?

Dead Rich, which is set aboard a Russian billionaire’s super yacht in the Caribbean. When I wrote it I had no idea it would be so topical. The book closes at the point that the awful war in Ukraine starts. I grew up loving the classic adventure thrillers by people like Neville Shute and Alistair MacLean. It was probably something to do with having been through lockdown, but I wanted to write a book which had some of that big screen romantic sense of adventure in it. 

Favourite book

That changes all the time. Graham Greene’s The Quiet American still stands up. I love the way it exposes the way our will to do good in politics is often not as innocent as we think it is. 

Which two characters would you invite to dinner and why? 

I was thinking that maybe inviting Elly Griffiths’s character Nelson and putting him in the same room as M.W. Craven’s Washington Poe, but I’ve a feeling neither would talk at all. It would probably be much more fun to put the deeply eccentric and self-absorbed Tilly Bradshaw and the more empathetic Ruth Galloway together and watch the fall-out from two of my favourite crime fiction intellectuals.

How do you relax?

I help run something called Brighton Ceilidh Collective. We put on dances every month in Brighton. Playing low-level folk tunes is a) very different from writing and b) very good for the neurones.

What book do you wish you had written and why? 

Again, that changes all the time. The last book I read with some jealously was Mark Billingham’s Rabbit Hole which was a great example of how crime fiction can do very serious stuff – and it’s also very darkly funny.

What would you say to your younger self if you were just starting out as an author?

Keep it simple. I have been writing fiction constantly since I was in my twenties. Though I won some couple of prizes with short stories, it took me until my bloody fifties to get a novel published. Lack of self-confidence which I had in spades makes you over-reach. When the light bulb came on I found how keeping things simple gave me much more power.

Why did you initially prefer to write two different series as opposed to a standalone novel and now that you have written a standalone what prompted you to do so? 

I wrote one series, then broke out to do a standalone with my fourth book, The Birdwatcher. I had no intention at all of turning that into a series but somehow the secondary character Alex Cupidi wouldn’t shut up, so she ended up forming the backbone of the second series, set in Kent. A lot of people do standalones now but it had always been my intention to mix them up. I think each form energises the other. 

What are you looking forward to at Lyme Crime?

It’s my first time there. I’m looking forward to everything! I’m from the South West so it feels like home turf – and will hopefully bring a new crowd along to see what a great community crime writers and readers now are. And Paddy Magrane who organised it is one of the loveliest people in crime, so I’m confident it will have a great atmosphere.

Dead Rich by G W Shaw (Riverrun) Published 26 May 2022 

Super yachts are secretive, like their owners. The bigger the richer. Like castles, they are created to inspire awe. Like castles too, they are defended. They are an entire world, separate from the rest of us. Kai, a carefree once-successful musician is invited by his new Russian girlfriend Zina to join her family’s Caribbean holiday. Impulsively accepting he learns that Zina is the daughter of a Russian oligarch, Stepan Pirumov and that the trip is aboard his yacht, the Zinaida, moored in St Thomas in the US Virgin Islands. On arrival Kai discovers that the head of security has been arrested, armed guards are below deck, there’s an onboard panic room and a strong sense of all not being quite right beneath the gleaming surfaces of the Pirumov’s lives. An unnerving presence punctures the atmosphere: a murderous imposter is on board the Zinaida, but who is it?

You can also find him on Facebook.

Tickets can be bought here:-


Friday 20 May 2022

In The Lyme Crime Spotlight :- Barbara Nadel

 Name:- Barbara Nadel

Job:- Author

Twitter:- @BarbaraNadel


Barbara Nadel is the author of three different series. The Inspector Çetin Ikmen books which are police procedurals set in Istanbul, Turkey. The Francis Hancock Series featuring a crime-solving undertaker and the Mumtaz Hakim and Lee Arnold Series who have a small detective agency. Deadly Web the seventh book in the Inspector Ikmen series won the CWA Silver Dagger in 2005. In 2006 Last Rites was the winner of the Swedish Jury magazine's Flintyxan ("Flint Axe") award for Best Historical Crime Novel. In 2008 Ashes to Ashes won the London Borough of Redbridge Big Book of the Year Award and in 2010 Sure and Certain Death won the London Borough of Redbridge Crime Fiction Book of the Year Award.

Current book: 

This is called 'Bride Price' and is an Inspector Ikmen mystery.

Favourite Book: 

'The Alexandria Quartet' by Lawrence Durrell.

How do you relax? 

I don't. I appear to be incapable.

Which book do you wish you had written and why:

'Dan Leno and the Limehouse Golem' by Peter Ackroyd. To me this is the epitome of a mysterious London book. And because London is my home and I was brought up with tales of its music halls, magicians and seers, I wish I'd written this.

What would you say to your younger self if you were starting out as an author?

Have confidence in your talent and don't be put off by those who tell you you're bound to fail.

Why do you prefer to write two different series as opposed to a standalone novel and would you consider writing a standalone novel? 

I think I have to have my psychologist's hat on here. In series, I like to see how characters develop over time and how they respond to different scenarios and challenges across the courses of their lives. I have many ideas for standalone books and would love to write one or more in the future. Plans are afoot, but not yet come to fruition.

What are you looking forward to at Lyme Crime? 

So much! Seeing so many friends is the big one for me. Also going somewhere I've never been before and, of course, Derek Farrell's 'Noir at the Bar'.

Bride Price by Barbara Nadel (Headline) Out Now

When jeweller Fahrettin Muftugolu is found dead in his apartment in the Istanbul district of Vefa, it looks like suicide. Searching the jeweller's home, Inspector Mehmet Suleyman and his team come across a hoard of extraordinary artefacts including solid gold religious relics and a mummified human head. But are they real and, if so, who owns these priceless possessions? As his colleagues begin their investigation, Suleyman is distracted by troubles of his own. His wedding to Gonca Serekoglu is days away, but when Gonca receives her bridal bedcover from a Roma haberdasher and discovers that it is covered in blood, she sees this as a curse on their marriage. Suleyman asks his old friend Cetin Ikmen to help him uncover the truth, but the task is not that simple... Meanwhile, as the stories swirling around Muftugolu become increasingly sinister, the dead man's wife appears, laying claim to his valuables, and Suleyman is drawn into a dark and dangerous world of smuggling and savagery . . .

Tickets can be bought here :-

Thursday 19 May 2022

Anthony Award Nominees

 The Bouchercon 2022 committee have announced the Nominees for the 2022 ANTHONY AWARDS. 

Voting for the Anthony Awards will happen at Bouchercon from Thursday 8 September 2022 at 7:00am and end on Saturday 10 October at 1:00pm. Winners will be announced at the Anthony Awards ceremony at Bouchercon 2022 in Minneapolis. 

Congratulations to all the nominated authors.

Wednesday 18 May 2022

Capital Crime launches 2022 Festival Programme and announces new venue


Capital Crime launched their 2022 programme with a bang last night at leading independent bookshop, Goldsboro Books, at a party to announce their stellar line up and spectacular new location. 

Taking place in the shadow of the iconic Battersea Power Station from 29th September – 1st October 2022, Capital Crime will bring together readers, authors, industry figures and the local community for the first major literary festival held on the site for a weekend of fun, innovation and celebration of crime fiction. 

Consisting of over 40 events and over 150 panelists, the line-up will include appearances from Peter James, Kate Mosse, Mark Billingham, Richard Osman, Robert Harris, SA Cosby, Dorothy Koomson, Jeffrey Archer, Anthony Horowitz, Charlie Higson, Jeffery Deaver, Lucy Foley, Bella Mackie, Ragnar Jónasson, Paula Hawkins, Reverend Richard Coles, Mark Edwards, Claire McGowan, Ben Aaronovitch and Former President of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom, Lady Hale, in conversation with Harriet Tyce. 

Their full schedule of innovative panel talks will be announced later in the summer. 

As part of the live festival this year, Capital Crime’s Social Outreach Initiative will be returning for a third year with the aim to create an inclusive, safe space where state school students with an interest in books can engage with authors, agents, editors and publishers to help demystify the publishing industry. 

The festival will also be launching the coveted Fingerprint Awards, which celebrate the best in genre, as chosen by readers. In 2022 the Fingerprints will present eight awards as well as a prestigious lifetime achievement award. 

Co-founded by David Headley, the owner of one of London’s destination bookshops, which attracts visitors from all over the world, Capital Crime 2022 will serve as a major London attraction, following the regeneration of the local Battersea area and improved transport links. 

Festival Founder, David Headley, said: “I am so delighted that Goldsboro Books and Capital Crime, along with our valued festival sponsors, will be working in partnership this year to bring a bigger and better live celebration of crime fiction back to London. We were so proud of what we achieved at our inaugural festival, and look forward to welcoming authors and readers to our new, exciting venue.” 

Festival Director, Lizzie Curle, said: “After what’s been an emotional few years, we are so grateful to our readers, authors and sponsors for their support, and are thrilled to be reuniting household name authors, new voices in fiction and their fans at our new home in Battersea Park. Though this Capital Crime event may look a little different from the outside; diversity, inclusivity and accessibility remain at the heart of our festival. We can’t wait to celebrate the best genre in the world, and hope everyone will agree it’s been worth the wait.” 

With diversity, accessibility, inclusivity and readers at the heart of the festival, Capital Crime this year will take place in a series of large stretch-tented venues for multiple panel events, signing area, a stunning bar area central to the festival, a pop up Goldsboro Books bookshop in the iconic Pump House Gallery, and an array of London’s tastiest street food traders. 

Weekend and Day Passes are available from the Capital Crime website:

Tuesday 17 May 2022

Partners in Crime by Nicola Upson

There was something a while back on Twitter that got me thinking - one of those polls where you put contrasting crime writers together to see what a collaboration of their work might look like. Although it wasn’t listed as one of the options, the combination that instantly sprang to mind was Josephine Tey and Margery Allingham - now that’s a book I would love to read. 

Tey and Allingham admired each other’s work and were roughly contemporary, with their first detective novels appearing a year apart: Allingham’s The White Cottage Mystery in 1928 and Tey’s The Man in the Queue (published under her Gordon Daviot pseudonym) in 1929. As far as I’m aware, the two never met in real life, although Tey spent a lot of time in Essex, where Allingham lived. But that’s the beauty of fiction - things that you wish for can happen, and although they don’t go as far as collaborating on a novel in Dear Little Corpses, a chance meeting starts a lasting friendship, and they attempt to solve a crime that touches them both. I really can’t remember a time when I’ve had such fun in bringing two characters together.

They are, of course, very different writers, with contrasting styles - although both write beautifully. Their heroes - Albert Campion and Alan Grant - are much loved but very different men; and whereas Tey often referred in letters to periods of unashamed idleness, Allingham came from a ‘fiction factory’ of professional writers and had published more than eight million words by the time she was thirty-five. But the things they have in common are even more obvious: a deep love of the English countryside, expressed so tellingly in their books; an excitement for London and a passion for theatre (they could easily have met over a gin and tonic in the foyer of the Old Vic); and a fascination with crimes from real life, which filter into novels like The Franchise Affair, The Daughter of Time and The China Governess

Most importantly, though, Tey and Allingham share a wit and humanity which is very present in their work: part of the reason we love their books, I think, is because we love them. In each case, the voice that springs so vividly from these pages is wonderful company, and their books reward continued rereading in a way that very few crime novels do. I’m often asked how this series started, and the simplest answer is probably this: I wanted to get to know Tey better, to spend time with her beyond that small but perfectly formed collection of eight crime novels - nine if you count Kif.

And that’s another thing that she and Allingham have in common - they each addressed a world war through a book that was out of character with the rest of their work. Kif (also published in 1929 as Daviot) is Tey’s unflinching account of a boy’s struggle to find his place in society when he returns from fighting in the trenches. The Oaken Heart - Allingham’s only work of non-fiction, published in 1941 - is the story of an English village during the early days of the second world war. The village in question is Tolleshunt D’Arcy in Essex (more famous now for the Bamber murders at White House Farm, which lies on its outskirts) and the book has a cast of characters every bit as rich as Allingham’s novels. As much as I love her fiction, The Oaken Heart is my favourite of her books, and its candour and insight were a huge influence on Dear Little Corpses. She gave me my title, too, which is taken from one of her letters, quoted in Julia Jones’s wonderful biography, The Adventures of Margery Allingham.

At the time this book is set, Tey and Allingham still had their finest work ahead of them. I have no doubt that they’ll team up again further down the series, and I’m looking forward to it already.

Dear Little Corpses by Nicola Upson is published by Faber. (Out Now)

It takes a village to bury a child.1 September, 1939. As the mass evacuation takes place across Britain, thousands of children leave London for the countryside, but when a little girl vanishes without trace, the reality of separation becomes more desperate and more deadly for those who love her. In the chaos and uncertainty of war, Josephine struggles with the prospect of change. As a cloud of suspicion falls across the small Suffolk village she has come to love, the conflict becomes personal, and events take a dark and sinister turn.