On the Radar — Doesn’t it make you sick when the killer gets away at the end? Well, there’s one killer we’ve all been rooting for a long time and, paradoxically, it makes us a bit sick that Dexter is not going to get away at the end of the eighth novel in Jeff Lindsay’s stunning series. Well, apparently, because Dexter is Dead has been touted as the final one and it’s our lead story this week. But we’ve also got a Peter Robinson reprinted, a ski slope mystery set in Canada, a cryptic crossword solving sleuth, and a really, really dark and bloody LA murder story. Read on and enjoy.
Dexter is Dead by Jeff Lindsay
Love him or loathe him, Dexter was a serial killer with a difference. Jeff Lindsay had the brilliant idea of making him a killer who only targets other serial killers, and we included him in our feature on the Top 10 serial killer novels. Sadly we have been promised – or threatened – that Dexter is Dead will be the character’s final curtain. Here, he is finally snared by the Miami police for a crime that, unusually for him, he did not commit. With a hugely successful TV series behind him, Lindsay is taking the bold step of tipping his anti-hero into the 2015 equivalent of Reichenbach Falls. With his personal life in tatters, and only his brother standing by his side, Dexter has reached the end of a long and sensational eight-book road. Or has he? Out on 30 July.
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No Cure for Love by Peter Robinson
Born in Leeds and now settled in Canada, Peter Robinson is right up there with the greats of crime fiction and so it’s a second outing for a book first published in 1995. This one doesn’t feature Robinson’s regular detective hero DCI Banks. Instead it’s Detective Arvo Hughes and the book is set Los Angeles. A British actress has achieved fame and fortune playing a homicide cop on network TV. But this has its downside, and when Sarah Broughton attracts a stalker unwilling to stop at texts and emails, she must depend on the LAPD’s Threat Management Unit to keep her sane – and alive. The book title pays homage to a 1988 song by Leonard Cohen, and will be on sale from 30 July. You can read our review of Robinson’s Children of the Revolution here.
Peculiar Stupidities by Oliver Tidy
You don’t normally associate the county of Kent with coal mining, but there were some grimy coalfields there a few generations ago. The mines might be history, but DI Romney and DS Marsh of Dover CID have a crime to solve and a decomposing body to identify. In an old mining community mouths remain shut and the two coppers must wade through a sea of ancient enmities to reach the truth. Christopher Fowler set the ball rolling by naming Bryant and May after a brand of matches and Tidy follows suit with Romney and Marsh echoing the name of the Kentish wetlands. Peculiar Stupidities is out on 30 July.
After Anna by Alex Lake
When a child is abducted, the odds against a happy outcome increase with every minute that passes. But here a tortured and tear-stained week goes by before the lucky five-year-old, Anna, is returned. Unharmed. But if you think all will be well, that sadly isn’t the case. For Anna’s parents the torment of the previous seven days will be nothing compared to what lies ahead. Public anger is a mysterious but terrible thing. When Anna’s disappearance and return are played out in the media spotlight, the hydra of public opinion begins to threaten Anna’s family more than her abductor ever did. Published on 30 July.
I Am Death by Chris Carter
Facing a terrible killer we have officers Hunter and Garcia of the LAPD Violent Crimes unit, who try to link the words ‘I Am Death’ to a real suspect. Readers who don’t fancy torture, sadism, abduction and kill scenes are advised to look elsewhere, but those with strong constitutions can follow Hunter and Garcia as they pursue a psychotic killer who has almost died laughing at the incompetence of the police. Below you can see the author giving us some insight into his latest thriller. I Am Death is available from 30 July.
Descent by Kristina Stanley
When the Stone Mountain ski centre in Canada is left reeling by the violent death of a potential Olympic medallist, newly appointed security boss Kalin Thompson is strongly advised to leave the case to the police. Instead, she is naturally drawn into the investigation. Set in a tight-knight and isolated community what we have here is an Alpine version of the locked-room mystery and before she knows it Kalin has a whole collection of suspects with motives. Plus, she has to keep her wits about her in case she ends up the killer’s next victim. On the shelves and for download from 25 July.
Click Double-Click by James Calum-Campbell
Perhaps crime fiction’s most celebrated solver of cryptic crosswords was – and always will be – Inspector Endeavour Morse, but Dr Cameron Strange may well be the newest member of this exclusive club. The author is himself a doctor, and recently won the Impress New Writers’ Prize. This tale is set in Scotland and tells of what happens when Dr Strange solves a particularly obstinate clue in a crossword. The solution reveals an imminent attack on a university campus. Despite the incredulity and mockery of his colleagues, Dr Strange realises he must act alone to prevent a catastrophe. Published on 1 August.