Tuesday 9 July 2019


The expansion of the library shows no signs of abating......

James Delargy 55 (2019) - purchased copy - Amazon

I think I saw this one first over on Goodreads and the premise sucked me in. I do like a bit of Aussie crime and when it came up for less than a £1 on kindle deals - BOOM!

Looking forward to a bit of gasping!


*** There were 54 victims before this. Who is number 55? ***
A thriller with a killer hook, and an ending that will make you gasp!

Wilbrook in Western Australia is a sleepy, remote town that sits on the edge of miles and miles of unexplored wilderness. It is home to Police Sergeant Chandler Jenkins, who is proud to run the town’s small police station, a place used to dealing with domestic disputes and noise complaints.

All that changes on a scorching day when an injured man stumbles into Chandler’s station. He’s covered in dried blood. His name is Gabriel. He tells Chandler what he remembers.
He was drugged and driven to a cabin in the mountains and tied up in iron chains. The man who took him was called Heath. Heath told Gabriel he was going to be number 55. His 55th victim.

Heath is a serial killer.

As a manhunt is launched, a man who says he is Heath walks into the same station. He tells Chandler he was taken by a man named Gabriel. Gabriel told Heath he was going to be victim 55.

Gabriel is the serial killer.

Two suspects. Two identical stories. Which one is the truth?

James Delargy has written one of the most exciting debuts of 2019. He masterfully paints the picture of a remote Western Australian town and its people, swallowed whole by the hunt for a serial killer. This novel has been sold in 19 countries so far and has just been optioned for film.

Stav Sherez - Eleven Days (2013) - purchased - WHSmith sale

A quid in a Smith's bargain bin alongside a Mankell and a Simenon. I've heard of the author but never read him before, so fingers crossed.


A fire rages through a sleepy West London square, engulfing a small convent hidden away among the residential houses. When DI Jack Carrigan and DS Geneva Miller arrive at the scene they discover eleven bodies, yet there were only supposed to be ten nuns in residence.

It's eleven days before Christmas, and despite their superiors wanting the case solved before the holidays, Carrigan and Miller start to suspect that the nuns were not who they were made out to be. Why did they make no move to escape the fire? Who is the eleventh victim, whose body was found separate to the others? And where is the convent's priest, the one man who can answer their questions?

Fighting both internal politics and the church hierarchy, Carrigan and Miller unravel the threads of a case which reaches back to the early 1970s, and the upsurge of radical Liberation Theology in South America - with echoes of the Shining Path, and contemporary battles over oil, land and welfare. Meanwhile, closer to home, there's a new threat in the air, one the police are entirely unprepared for...

Spanning four decades and two continents, Eleven Days finds Carrigan and Miller up against time as they face a new kind of criminal future.

John Le Carre - A Legacy of Spies (2017) - charity shop billy bargain buy

I've watched more films and TV dramatisations of John Le Carre's work than I have read.
I've only ever read one Le Carre novel which is a bit sad. (Call for the Dead back in 2011.) I have most of his canon on the shelves and ought to  my finger out.


Peter Guillam, former disciple of George Smiley in the British Secret Service, has long retired to Brittany when a letter arrives, summoning him to London. The reason? Cold War ghosts have come back to haunt him. Intelligence operations that were once the toast of the Service are to be dissected by a generation with no memory of the Berlin Wall. Somebody must pay for innocent blood spilt in the name of the greater good . . .

'Utterly engrossing and perfectly pitched. There is only one le Carre. Eloquent, subtle, sublimely paced' Daily Mail

'Splendid, fast-paced, riveting' Andrew Marr, Sunday Times

'Remarkable. Vintage John le Carre. It gives the reader, at long last, pieces of a jigsaw puzzle that have been missing for 54 years. Like wine, le Carre's writing has got richer with age. Don't wait for the paperback' The Times

Matt Phillips - Countdown (2019) review copy received

Cheers to Henry Roi and Matt Phillips for a copy of this one, which I'll be getting to soon.
Mr Phillips has been enjoyed before several times - Bad Luck City and Redbone. More from him sits on the pile.


Welcome to California. Weed is legal. Grow it. Sell it. Smoke it. Eat it. But the money you make off it—there's the rub. Bank it, and the Feds will ask questions. Keep it around, and you’ll get robbed. LaDon and Jessie—two hustlers who make selling primo weed a regular gig—hire a private security detail to move and hold their money. Ex-soldiers Glanson and Echo target the cash—they start a ripoff business.

It’s the wild, wild west. Except this time, everybody’s high.

With their guns and guts, Glanson and Echo don’t expect much trouble from a mean son-of-a-gun like LaDon Charles. But that’s exactly what they get. In this industry, no matter how much money there is for the taking—and no matter who gets it—there's always somebody counting backwards...to zero.

From acclaimed pulp writer Matt Phillips, Countdown is a head-spinning hit of Southern California’s lucrative and not-quite-regulated marijuana industry.

Praise for COUNTDOWN:

“A slab of rare pulp, served nice and bloody. Countdown reads like an homage to Elmore Leonard from one of the hottest new voices on the crime fiction scene.” —Anthony Neil Smith, author of Yellow Medicine and All the Young Warriors

Aidan Truhan - The Price You Pay (2018) - purchased copy

A tip off from Anthony Neil Smith in his Twitter feed alerted me to this one. I'll know who to blame if it all goes wrong. I doubt it though.


Get mad, get even, get paid. What kind of loser stops at getting even?

Didi's dead. That's sad. Jack Price isn't sad, because Jack doesn't care about Didi. Jack is just angry, because if anyone was going to brutally murder his bad-tempered old neighbour, it was him.

But when Jack takes matters into his own hands, he gets a contract taken out on him by an internationally renowned terrorist organisation. Which frankly seems overkill. Jack's just your average high-class coke dealer, after all. On a level playing field against a team of professional killers, he wouldn't stand a chance.

But Jack Price doesn't play fair. And Jack Price is going to make these guys pay.

Jimmy Sangster - Touchfeather, Too (1970) - purchased copy
Recently re-released by Lee Goldberg and Brash Books, and the cunningly titled sequel to Touchfeather. Jimmy Sangster worked as a screenwriter and director on Hammer House of Horror films. I do like a bit of espionage and a bit of cheek and sass to boot is an added bonus.


The Stewardess with a License to Kill is Back!

Katy Touchfeather is a fun-loving, British spy with a cheeky attitude and lethal skills who travels the world as a stewardess. Her latest assignment is to bring down what appears to be a gold smuggling operation...but is something far worse. It's a globetrotting, espionage adventure that takes her from London to a lavish yacht on the high-seas, from the jungles of Africa to the beaches of the Bahamas, and that pits her against one of richest men on earth and a deadly torturess who loves to extract information in agonizingly creative ways...and can't wait to try them all on Katy.

Praise for the Touchfeather Thrillers

"Bubbly, irrepressible... drawn by her breezy, chatty first-person narrative, readers will cheer Katy on as she skates around with flamboyant grace." Publishers Weekly

"Freshness and humor are rare qualities in a thriller nowadays. They're here in plenty. Exhilarating verve and expertise. It's a winner!" Irish Times


  1. Looks like you've got some good ones there, Col. As far as I'm concerned, you can't go far wrong with le Carré. Sherez is quite talented, too. I hope you'll enjoy those when you get to them.

    1. Oh, I didn't know you've read Sherez. Not much you haven't read though in all honesty, Margot!

  2. They all look interesting, but once again it's the Ozzie one that immediately catches my attention . . .

    1. Ha, you'll be having a down under reading binge soon, hopefully!

  3. Convents, priests and liberation theology? I have to read this one, you know how I like a dose of nuns, and a dose of international intrigue, in my reading. Thanks for the tipoff!

    1. Convents and spies. I think you should give in and buy all 6!

  4. I bought that book by le Carré close to when it came out and still haven't read it. I also have one by Sherez, don't remember the title.

    1. I have a stack full of Le Carre I've ignored for too long, Tracy. I've heard of Sherz before but its the first I've crossed paths with.