Off the beaten path…

On the Radar — Earlier this month, some of the bigger names in crime fiction dropped their novels in good time to make the bestseller lists for Christmas sales. This week, we’re bringing you some lesser known crime books which, for lovers of the genre, could be well worth exploring. From PI fiction with Mark Coggins to an Irish mystery with Dervla McTiernan and on to coastal Germany where Anna Johannsen sets her novel, it’s an exciting new bookshelf for you to discover.

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The Dead Beat Scroll by Mark Coggins

With a dead former partner, a vanished woman and a previously unknown manuscript by Beat writer Jack Kerouac to contend with, private eye August Riordan has plenty to keep him busy upon his return to San Francisco. Friend and former business partner Chris Duckworth’s untimely demise is definitely suspicious and as Riordan digs deeper he finds himself in all sorts of bother in this thriller with a side order of noir. It’s the latest in the August Riordan Mystery series and comes out on 16 September. Love private eyes? Then give Lawrence Block’s Alive in Shape and Color a try.
Pre-order now on Amazon

The Scholar by Dervla McTiernan

Her debut novel, The Ruin, was well received. Now Irish author Dervla McTiernan and her detective character Cormac Reilly are back, so mark 19 September in the diary for the paperback arrival. Reilly finds himself in the midst of a high-profile case when his girlfriend Emma stumbles upon a hit and run victim on her way to work. The dead woman is Carline Darcy, a gifted student and heir to pharmaceutical giant Darcy Therapeutics, a company happens to be Emma’s employer. As Reilly struggles with an investigation that’s way above his pay grade, he begins to realise that Emma may not be as innocent as she at first appears… As its title suggests, Ken Bruen’s In the Galway Silence is also set in Ireland.
Pre-order now on Amazon

Where the Silence Calls by MJ Lee

DI Thomas Ridpath’s has a serious illness which keeps him out of the field and in the coroner’s office. When a block of flats goes up in flames in Manchester, the only victim is a middle aged man, apparently innocently watching TV when he perished. Then more bodies begin appearing around the city, each accompanied by a chilling message in orange spray paint. As Ridpath gets drawn into the investigation, he must delve into the dark past of his city and find the link before any more people die. But it appears the flames are about to burn closer to home… Out on 23 September. Manchester is also the setting for the Adrian Waits series by Joseph Knox. Here’s our interview with the author.
Pre-order now on Amazon

The Body on the Beach by Anna Johannsen

Out 24 September, this is the first in the Island Mystery series by German author Anna Johannsen, translated by Lisa Reinhardt. When a man’s body is found on the beach at Amrum, in North Friesland, an already close-knit community closes ranks even more. It’s up to former local girl DI Lena Lorenzen to crack through that the silence, but as her past threatens to catch up with her, can Lorenzen set her former life aside, find out exactly what’s going on in the here and now, and bring a dangerous criminal to justice? Read our guide to Philip Kerr’s Bernie Gunther series, also set in Germany.
Pre-order now on Amazon

Play Dead by Anne Penketh

We’ve heard of musicians murdering a tune but Anne Penketh takes it a deadly stage further in this twisty mystery which is out now. There are some pretty ingenious methods, too – a musician impaled by her cello spike, a conductor found close to death with his head stuffed inside the piano and a trumpeter poisoned by his mouthpiece to name but three. Norfolk DI Sam Clayton must get to the bottom of it all, and the fact that his new girlfriend Melissa is a singer with the orchestra makes the case all the more pressing. Read our review of Murder on the Marsh, the first book in the Sam Clayton series.
Buy now on Amazon

Read about last week’s new releases here.

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