Friday 6 December 2019


Six of the top additions last month.......

Nigel Bird - Let it Snow (2019) - copy from author

I've enjoyed Nigel Bird's work before but this looks boss.

Mr SuitBeat on the Brat (and other stories) and Smoke


Police Constable Ernie Shavers is murdered while trying to save the life of a suicidal teenager and everyone wants a piece of the killer. Some are happy to play it by the book, others don’t give a damn whether the rules are smashed to pieces. Whether they’re playing straight or crooked, they may not have long before the killer strikes again. Unfortunately it’s a big city and the current crime wave has thrown them a couple of curve balls to pile on the pressure.

At the zoo, a rhino is killed for its horn. With no evidence trail and a broken heart, DS Sue Nolan turns to an old flame, a man who always has his ear to the ground. Gangland boss, Johnny Yen, is only too happy to help, but only if he can get a little something in return.

In the centre of town, the biggest store in the city is robbed by a mannequin. It’s the perfect inside job and the owners of the store know exactly which officer they want on the case, only the officer doesn’t feel quite the same way.

If that wasn’t bad enough, record snowfall has created chaos within the police department.

It’s going to be one hell of a Christmas.

As detectives work, they reflect upon their lives. Each of them needs to make changes. Not all of them know where to begin.

Paul Matts - Donny Jackal (2019) - purchased copy

Not read anything from Paul Matts before, with the exception of the odd short story maybe...

It is 1978. The new punk rock cultural revolution has started to spread out of London into the English suburbs. One person waiting impatiently for this to impact on his life is Donald Jackson, a wannabe punk rock star. In fact, in Donny's mind, this migration cannot come quick enough. He is a factory worker for now, though. The events that follow a gig in his home town of Oldhouse, in central England, have huge connotations for Donny. And also to those near him. How can everything seem to get smashed up so easily? And a web of death, drugs and police emerge so rapidly? Revolution? Yes please. But at what cost?

John Dunning - The Bookman's Wake (1995) - purchased copy

The second in Dunning's five books Cliff Janeway series. Booked to Die, the first was one of my top read last month. This one was nominated for an Edgar Award. 

Cliff Janeway, a book dealer, agrees to collect a woman who has skipped bail in Seattle. But when he arrives, he realizes he's been employed to find a rare edition of "The Raven". He also learns that those who are known to have owned copies of the book have met untimely deaths.

Andy Rausch - Layla's Score (2019) - purchased copy

Andy Rausch has been enjoyed before - RIDING SHOTGUN AND OTHER AMERICAN CRUELTIES (2017)

Lefty is a black hitman working for the Chicago mob. Tasked with eliminating a mark, he kills the man and his wife, only to learn they have an infant daughter. Realizing the child is now alone in the world, Lefty takes her in and decides to raise her as his own.

Years later, Lefty embarks on a trip across the country to pick up a freelance contract: a once-in-a-lifetime hit with a two million dollar paycheck. Together with two-ex-colleagues and his daughter,  they head to Detroit to take on a sadistic mob boss's son.

When the stakes get high, can Lefty figure out who to trust - and keep his daughter safe?

Eva Dolan - Between Two Evils (2020) - Net Galley

Hangs head in shame, I've not yet read anything by Eva Dolan. This drops early next year and is the 5th in her Zigic & Ferreira series.

As the country bakes under the relentless summer sun, a young doctor is found brutally murdered at his home in a picturesque Cambridgeshire village.

Is his death connected to his private life - or his professional one?

Dr Joshua Ainsworth worked at an all-female detention centre, one still recovering from a major scandal a few years before. Was he the whistle-blower - or an instigator?

As Detective Sergeant Ferreira and Detective Inspector Zigic begin to painstakingly reconstruct Dr Ainsworth's last days, they uncover yet more secrets and more suspects. But this isn't the only case that's demanding their attention - a violent criminal has been released on a technicality and the police force know he will strike again: the only question is who will be his first victim...

Richard Anderson - Retribution (2018) - purchased copy

Debut novel from Richard Anderson. I'm currently listening to his second Boxed on the way to and from work. Can't beat a bit of Aussie crime!

Early one Christmas morning, in a small town deep in rural Australia, Graeme Sweetapple is heading home with a truck full of stolen steers when he comes across an upended ute that has hit a tree. He is about to get involved with Luke, an environmental protestor who isn't what he seems; a washed-up local politician, Caroline Statham, who is searching for a sense of purpose, but whose businessman husband seems to be sliding into corruption; and Carson, who is wild, bound to no one, and determined to escape her circumstances.

Into their midst comes Retribution, a legendary horse worth a fortune. Her disappearance triggers a cycle of violence and retaliation that threatens the whole community. As tensions build, they must answer one question: is true retribution ever possible - or even desirable?


  1. Oh, I really think you'll like Eva Dolan's work, Col. She writes very well, in my opinion, and her characters are nicely developed. Solid look at the sometimes-not-so-nice side of Peterborough, too - also just my opinion.

    1. Thanks Margot, I always value your insight on the genre.

  2. Sounds like a lot of good reading here, Col. And thanks for reminding me to catch up with Nigel Bird’s work.