The Thirst finally sated

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On the Radar — Let’s not beat around the bush, here. The Thirst by Jo Nesbo could just be the biggest Scandinavian novel of the year, or even the biggest novel of the year full-stop. It sees the return of Harry Hole after a three year hiatus, and his fans have been… well… thirsty. But that’s not all we’ve got for you in this week’s new books column. If you don’t like the strong stuff from Norway, you can try some Scotch crime fiction courtesy of Douglas Skelton, a fine glass of the French stuff from Sophie Henaff, and David Baldacci’s books are usually good for a bourbon flavour.

The Thirst by Jo Nesbo
Fans have waited three long years since the release of Police, so will the 11th Harry Hole novel be worth the wait? Find out on 20 April, or check in for our review coming very soon. What we can tell you is that the killer’s thirst is for blood, and he’s killing women on the Oslo Tinder dating scene in ways you can’t imagine. Harry Hole is enjoying life lecturing at the police academy, but is compelled to join the investigation because as it happens, the killer is one that slipped through his hands a few years back. All sorts of strange sub-plots and corrupt practices go on in the background as Harry gives the investigation the momentum it needs, but can he really put an end to all this killing?
Pre-order now on Amazon

Tag – You’re Dead by Douglas Skelton
We first met Dominic Queste last year in The Dead Don’t Boogie, a book set in Scotland which earned a five-star review on this site for its mix of dirty dealings and black humour. Now Queste is back and he’s on the hunt for a missing butcher. A simple case turns tricky when our intrepid private detective uncovers links to a nasty killer who likes to give his victims the chop. Danger awaits our hero, who’s maybe pushed his luck a bit too far this time. Can he come out of this one unscathed? Out 27 April.
Pre-order now on Amazon

Watching the Bodies by Graham Smith
Jake Boulder is the tough guy lead in this new series from Graham Smith. Boulder is a Utah doorman who is asked by a PI friend to help track down the killer of Kira Niemeyer. The Watcher has an unusual method of choosing victims and a desperate race to catch the killer ensues. Smith is a time served joiner turned hotelier who is now based near the Scottish border, and has already established his crime credentials with his DI Harry Evans series. Released 25 April.
Pre-order now on Amazon

The Awkward Squad by Sophie Henaff
Here’s that new French crime fiction we promised you in the intro. It’s one of those novels like the Department Q series, where the detectives are misfits and miscreants, and yet they have to get along to solve the case – always tremendous fun. Anne Capestan has been put in charge of the rabble after dispensing one bullet too many on her last case. The cold case they set out to solve is the death of an old lady seven years prior, but there’s also a murdered sailor and even a shipwreck off the coast of Florida that are linked in. We like the sound of this and we like the cover. Paperback available 20 April.
Buy now on Amazon

The Trespasser by Tana French
Dubbed the first lady of Irish crime, French has garnered hordes of fans with her dense, disturbing thrillers. We’re at book number six in the Dublin Murder Squad series and the focus is on Detective Antoinette Conway and her partner, Detective Stephen Moran. They’re called upon to investigate what at first seems a case of a lovers’ tiff gone dramatically wrong, but as Conway and Moran dig deeper into the past of beautiful victim Aislinn Murray, they find surprising undercurrents beneath her picture-perfect facade. Out 20 April in print, already available for Kindle.
Buy now on Amazon

Good News, Bad News by WHS McIntyre
The eighth novel in the Best Defence series by Scottish lawyer WHS McIntyre sees Robbie Munro juggling cases and avoiding the manure that inevitably flies when the fan’s turned up high. He’s defending Antionia Brechin, granddaughter of the notorious Sheriff Brechin, though it’s not clear what he’s notorious for. Munro is also trying to find his client Ellen’s husband after she’s won the lottery, but said husband is a swindler who’s ripped off Jake Turpie, and Jake’s not happy. And, there’s trouble in Munro’s personal life too. Find out what happens on 20 April.
Pre-order now on Amazon

The Fix by David Baldacci
This is the third in the Amos Decker series from American crime writing phenomenon David Baldacci. Decker has a remarkable memory thanks to a previous head injury. He also has synaesthesia, where the perception of senses gets crossed over. Decker is a witness when everyman Walter Dabney executes a school teacher and then shoots himself outside FBI HQ in Washington. Our hero finds himself in an uncomfortable alliance with Agent Harper Brown uncovering a conspiracy with the highest national security concerns. Out 20 April.
Pre-order on Amazon

Darkest Thoughts by Gordon Brown
Not a memoir by a former British Prime Minister, instead this is the first book in the McIntyre series, and it blends road trip with crime thriller. Ex-military and now working as a bodyguard, Craig McIntyre is something of a trouble magnet. In Iraq, he finds himself at the centre of an event that leaves several people dead, but although others think him responsible, McIntyre has no idea how they died. Cue a pursuit which gives our hero the chance to question himself and his future… if he has one, that is. Out 27 April.
Pre-order now on Amazon

Time to Win by Harry Brett
Tatiana is widowed when her husband and crime boss Richard Goodwin is fished out of a local river. It might look like suicide but given Goodwin’s past there is a list of people in seedy Great Yarmouth not well disposed to the dear departed. Tatty takes up the business and the dream of a luxury casino complex to pull in cruise ships with all their wealth. She wants to get to the bottom of Richard’s death and there is no shortage of dangerous rivals in a soggy English coastal resort that has seen better days. Available on 27 April.
Pre-order now on Amazon

The Choice by Samantha King
Debut author King is a former editor and a qualified psychotherapist; no surprise then that this book blends psychological thriller with domestic noir. Madeleine has a lovely life and much-adored twins. Then, one day it all falls apart when a stranger turns up on her doorstep and forces Madeleine to make a devastating decision – who should live, her son or her daughter? Years later, she is still haunted by the events of that day, until fragmented memories resurface which make her see the tragedy with new eyes… Out 20 April.
Pre-order now on Amazon

Read all about last week’s new releases here.

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