Thursday, 29 September 2016

DAVID PUTNAM - THE SQUANDERED (2015)


Synopsis/blurb....

The Squandered propels Bruno into an emotionally charged high-speed chase as he and Marie leave their rescued kids in Costa Rica and risk returning to the U.S. at the request of Bruno's terminally ill father. Bruno's estranged and incarcerated brother needs Bruno to help rescue his abducted young grandchildren, children that Bruno hadn't known existed. 

Bruno cannot deny his father, and Marie will not let Bruno go alone. As fugitives, they return to the U.S. to face not only imminent arrest, but also to confront ruthless kidnappers, drug dealers, and government agents who will stop at nothing to keep a secret from the past buried forever. 

Glimpses of Bruno's law enforcement past shed light on the mayhem they encounter once they are discovered in L.A. It seems that Bruno's brother, Noble, has inadvertently kicked a hornet's nest of criminals, both in and out of prison, and among various law enforcement agencies looking to find a long missing load of nine million dollars' worth of cocaine. And Noble's grandchildren are caught in the cross-hairs. 

The chase, the brutality, and the emotional stress tests Bruno and Marie's relationship and forces them to define family, a what's okay to forgive, and what should never be forgotten. Armed with a new moral code, will they live long enough to put it into practice?

The third book in David Putnam's Bruno Johnson series and another fast-paced romp.

Johnson risks his and partner Marie's freedom when returning to the States from Costa Rica again, in order to help his brother's family. A brother he hasn't seen for 25 years or so, the brother he helped imprison back when he was a cop.

Noble Johnson's grandchildren have been kidnapped and Bruno's the man to get them back.

I liked the book overall, though a fraction less maybe than the earlier books in the series.
Putnam's characters are convincing and you can feel the passion and love Bruno has for Marie, his father and his "adopted" children.

We get more of his back-story and how a childhood friend became a brother. A brother that made some bad choices and took a wrong turn in life - but now has put aside the bitterness of the years and reached out to Bruno. Can he be trusted or is Bruno getting played?

Kidnapped kids, love of family, forgiveness, California's drug Kingpin, rogue cops, an old gangster feud, a stash of diamonds, missing coke, jail-time, old enemies resurfacing, jeopardy, a true-crime best selling book, assistance from some old friends and more........ all leading up to a satisfying resolution with a twist.

Plenty of action to go with the more thoughtful moments regarding love and family. Slight suspension of disbelief at a few of the situations Bruno and Marie found themselves in and got themselves out of - though no out and out flying pig moments.

Overall I was entertained and was keen to see how things got resolved.

4 from 5

The earlier books in the series have been read and enjoyed - The Disposables and The Replacements.

There's a fourth book out early next year - The Vanquished.

Dave Putnam has his website here.

The author was kind enough to send me a copy for review.








Wednesday, 28 September 2016

DANIEL VLASATY - ONLY BONES (2016)


Synopsis/blurb......

Daniel is a bike messenger in Chicago. He’s good at his job and takes pride in his work. In his riding. In the fact that he knows the city’s streets like the back of his hand. Daniel’s also in debt to his drug dealer, Lawrence. And when he’s offered a job to work off his debt Daniel doesn’t hesitate. It’ll be an easy job, Lawrence tells him. Just running packages. 

But Daniel’s about to learn that things are never easy. 

Not in this city.

A wild 130-odd page road trip around Chicago's streets in the company of incessant pill-popping bike messenger, Daniel. Daniel pops pills like the rest of us breathe air.

Unfortunately racing around town on a bike doesn't earn you enough to pay your dealer, even if you don't do alcohol and your addiction has stunted your appetite for food. Daniel's forced to make a drug run for his dealer Lawrence to square his account. Things can't get any worse can they?

Err, yes they can.

Elf - Lawrence's supplier is a total psycho with a crazy gang of flunkies - not that he'd need them to kick Daniel's butt. Then after you've met the connection, its probably best if you don't get followed back to your dealer and shaken down by the two dirtiest cops in Chicago - Rick and Pauley.

Pauley looks at me the way a cop looks at anyone he sees as beneath him. Which is pretty much everyone who isn't a cop.

While Daniel's not exactly deserving of our sympathy, Vlasaty shows us some of the origins of his life path. When Pauley makes him empty his pockets he finds Daniel's knife.....

It's not a true switchblade. Just a spring-loaded knife.

The only thing my old man ever taught me before he split was to always carry a knife.

That a man always has a blade on him.

I remember him stabbing some dude in a Jewel parking lot right around then. Something about a stolen girlfriend. His or the other guy's. I'm not sure. I was seven years old.

I don't say anything to Pauley.

Lawrence's stash gets pinched by the dirty duo and he suffers a beating. Elf's none too happy, it's not the first time his customers have been hit. Lawrence is positively raging and after a business meeting with Elf, retribution is planned......and Daniel's in over his head and unfortunately along for the ride.

Memorable, harsh and devoid of hope. Excellent stuff from Vlasaty.

4.5 from 5

Daniel Vlasaty has his website here.
Catch him on Twitter - @DanielVlasaty

Thanks to publisher All Due Respect for my copy of this one. Their website is here.

Read September, 2016

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

2 BY GARRY DISHER

2 from one of my favourite Australian authors - Garry Disher

Disher has written across many genres - children's books, YA books, non-fiction, short stories, general/literary fiction in addition to his crime fiction.





















He has two interesting series of books. One concerns Wyatt - a professional criminal. The other comes at things from the police side of the fence - his Inspector Hal Challis series.

I've read a few of the Wyatt novels, most recently the latest - The Heat.

Hal Challis has yet to be enjoyed.

Garry Disher has a website here.













Port Vila Blues (1995)


Wyatt snatches the cash easily enough. He bypasses the alarm system, eludes the cops, makes it safely back to his bolthole in Hobart.It's the diamond-studded Tiffany brooch - and perhaps the girl - that brings him undone. Now some very hard people want to put Wyatt and that brooch out of circulation.But this is Wyatt's game and Wyatt sets the rules - even if it means a reckoning somewhere far from home.Port Vila Blues is Wyatt's fifth heist. It's faster than ever, racing towards the inevitable confrontation on a clifftop above the deceptively calm waters of Port Vila Bay.

"In a murky world where the cops are robbers, old-style crim Wyatt positively shines. Clear taut writing - not a word wasted." Marele Day

"...tough, violent, relentless and thoroughly convincing" Stuart Coupe

Snapshot (2006)


It had taken months for Janine McQuarrie to succumb to her husband's pressure to have sex with strangers at suburban spouse-swapping parties. But after attending a few such events on the Mornington Peninsula, this Australian social psychologist rebels. And then, driving with her young daughter one day, she gets out of her car to ask directions from another driver, is killed. The little girl escapes when the gunman's pistol misfires.

Inspector Hal Challis, to whose Crime Investigation Unit the case falls, is thwarted in his efforts by his boss. The dead woman was Superintendent McQuarrie's daughter-in-law. He seems to be more interested in protecting his son than in finding his daughter-in-law's murderer. Who might have a motive to kill this attractive young wife and mother? One of her clients? One of the swingers she'd gotten together with at a party? Or, the obvious suspect, her husband? The villain turns out to be someone Challis never would have expected.

Monday, 26 September 2016

LOGGING THE LIBRARY - PART EIGHTY-FOUR

Tub 84 this week and on the home stretch I think - I might reach 90, I might not.


TUB 84!


Adam Hall, Carl Hiaasen, Edward Bunker, Rory Flynn, Simon Armitage, 
Edward Bunker - posthumously published
Ex-con. Author. Actor. Legend. Edward Bunker is one of the acknowledged masters of crime fiction. Written in the late 1960's and discovered after Bunker's death in 2005, Stark is his first and perhaps his most explosive novel ever.

1962. Oceanview, California. The girls are beautiful. The dope is cheap. The squares here are ripe for the plucking--easy money for a man with a plan. Ernie Stark is a hophead and a grifter out to make a big score. If he has to screw over everyone in town, he will. The problem is one more misstep will find him locked up for good.Violent, lightening paced and exotic, filed with the most wonderful cast of lowlifes you'll ever meet and dialogue that crackles, this is the lost novel for mystery lovers everywhere and the legion of fans of the legendary Edward Bunker.

Jake Arnott, Gar Anthony Haywood, Boris Starling, Christopher Wilson, Neil Cross, 

Crap photo - interesting book!
The Ballad of Lee Cotton (2005)
(Cotton)
A novel by Christopher Wilson

From his Icelandic father Lee Cotton gets his marble skin and blue eyes. From his mixed-race mother he gains his black identity. From his Mambo grandmother he inherits forebodings about his future. It's a combination that sets Lee apart from the other black kids growing up in Eureka, Mississippi. It marks Lee out as slightly odd. And very white. If childhood was confusing, adolescence proves life changing when Lee falls in love with the sublime Angelina. It's also life threatening: Angel's father is a freelance shooter for the Klan, who doesn't take kindly to his daughter's boyfriend. An act of appalling violence leaves Lee far from home with a new identity, a draft card, a memory that operates in flashback and a mental illness that makes him a sort of genius. He also has a reputation, back home, for being dead. Nobody (except possibly his grandmother) could envisage that Lee's rebirth is a headstart and not a handicap. His role in a quite remarkable journey through life will be to transform others as he has transformed himself...
Neil Cross, Chris Simms, Alan Furst, Andrew Vachss, Oonagh O'Hagan, 

Andrew Vachss - short stories!
A chilling collection of tales chronicles the stories of a stalker prowling an urban high-rise, a serial killer whose crimes reflect a childhood of abuse, and an inner-city gunman willing to destroy any number of victims to achieve a moment of acceptance.

Colin Bateman, Ian Sansom, Russell James, Ryan Gatiss, Neville Thompson (edited),

Stories from an Irish Prison!
Every day the population of Ireland wakes up to reports of another horror case of crime. The streets have become unsafe to walk upon and yet nothing seems to be done about it. Politicians make noises voicing their disgust while the police make arrests only to have the perpetrators walk free. Despite all the media hype, no one seems to be any nearer to solving the problem.Streetwise reveals what is really happening on the streets. The stories contained here are told by prisoners: those who have been involved in crime and are now paying their debt to society, allowing the reader to enter the minds of criminals and begin to understand the circumstances behind their actions. Meet Chang, who started joyriding at eight years old and was infamous among police and legendary among fellow law-breakers by the age of 12; Mucka, a once saintly schoolboy who was abandoned by both his family and society so took to robbing as a form of revenge; PJ, man of the house and breadwinner at 11, alcoholic by 12; and Tommy, the divorc who was refused social welfare so robbed the Co-op of a million Euros and soon found the local wing of the IRA knocking at his door. An exhilarating, emotional roller coaster, Street Wise contains frank accounts from those who have succumbed to crime through boredom, poverty or desperation. It shows how men from different backgrounds have fallen into similar crime traps and what has finally placed them on the path to redemption.

Russell James
When a young woman is gruesomely murdered, her friend and fellow reporter Kirsty Rice feels bound to investigate. Just as Kirsty enters the murky world of call-girls, porn and Internet sex, she discovers that she is pregnant. Despite his unconvincing denials, Kirsty is shocked to discover that the father of her unborn child is involved with the pornographers. Did he know about the killing? And how far was he mixed up with London's infamous Miller family? No One Gets Hurt is a tense and powerful thriller, hurtling from a truly shocking opening to an even more shattering climax.

Hans Fallada, Conrad Williams, Daniel Silva, Pall Thomas, Gavin Lyall, 

New Zealand Crime!
Tito Ihaka, the unkempt, overweight Maori cop, was demoted to Sergeant due to insubordination and pigheadedness. He investigates the unsolved killing of a seventeen-year-old girl at an election night party in a ritzy villa near Auckland. Ihaka is also embroiled in a very personal mystery. A freelance journalist has stumbled across information that Ihaka's father, Jimmy, a trade union firebrand and renegade Marxist, didn't die of natural causes. The stories weave themselves into an exciting climax in an atmosphere of political maneuvering and intrigue surrounding the United States' confrontation with New Zealand over its anti-nuclear stance.

Martina Cole, James McClure, Graham Hurley, Gavin Lyall, Walter Mosley, 

T. Jefferson Parker, Peter Robinson x 2, Val McDermid, John LeCarre, 

Debut novel from 1985 - T' Jefferson Parker!
Laguna...
Where every day the sun makes a promise the nighttime breaks, while the super-rich live out expensive fantasies in posh beach houses and drown their memories in Cuervo Gold margaritas...

Laguna...
Where trouble has swept in like a Santa Ana wind, blowing the cover off a world of torture, murder and blood-red secrets

Laguna...
Where a crazed killer has turned paradise into a Disneyland of depraved violance--with a fiery vengeance--and where homicide cop Tom Shephard unravels a grisly mystery that reaches back across forty years of sordid sex, blackmail, and suicide into the dark corners of his own past, and sweats out a deadly truth in the sweltering..

Laguna Heat
S. J. Rozan, Marcus Sakey, Richard Stark, Ben Richards, Michael Symmons Roberts, 

Westlake AKA Stark - the last Parker - no.24!
 "[One] of the greatest writers of the twentieth century...Richard Stark, real name Donald Westlake...His Parker books form a genre all their own."
--John Banville, Booker Prize-winning author of The Sea

Master criminal Parker takes another turn for the worse as he tries to recover loot from a heist gone terribly wrong. In Nobody Runs Forever, Parker and two cohorts stole the assets of a bank in transit, but the police heat was so great they could only escape if they left the money behind. In this follow-up novel, Parker and his associates plot to reclaim the loot, which they hid in the choir loft of an unused country church. As they implement the plan, people on both sides of the law use the forces at their command to stop Parker and grab the goods for themselves. Though Parker's new getaway van is an old Ford Econoline with "Holy Redeemer Choir" on its doors, his gang is anything but holy, and Parker will do whatever it takes to redeem his prize, no matter who gets hurt in the process.


Bill Pronzini x 2.5, Marcia Muller x 0.5, Dick Francis, Mike Ripley, 

Husband and wife - tag-team Nameless mystery - no. 13!
The "Nameless Detective" and Sharon McCone join forces at a San Diego private detective convention to investigate a case involving multiple murder, a crime ring dealing in smuggled fugitives, and bizarre, kinky lifestyles.
Cathi Unsworth, Tim Willocks, Howard Jacobson, Jesmyn Ward, Natsuo Kirino, 

Jesmyn Ward - non-fiction!
"We saw the lightning and that was the guns; and then we heard the thunder and that was the big guns; and then we heard the rain falling and that was the blood falling; and when we came to get in the crops, it was dead men that we reaped." -Harriet Tubman

In five years, Jesmyn Ward lost five young men in her life-to drugs, accidents, suicide, and the bad luck that can follow people who live in poverty, particularly black men. Dealing with these losses, one after another, made Jesmyn ask the question: Why? And as she began to write about the experience of living through all the dying, she realized the truth-and it took her breath away. Her brother and her friends all died because of who they were and where they were from, because they lived with a history of racism and economic struggle that fostered drug addiction and the dissolution of family and relationships. Jesmyn says the answer was so obvious she felt stupid for not seeing it. But it nagged at her until she knew she had to write about her community, to write their stories and her own.

Jesmyn grew up in poverty in rural Mississippi. She writes powerfully about the pressures this brings, on the men who can do no right and the women who stand in for family in a society where the men are often absent. She bravely tells her story, revisiting the agonizing losses of her only brother and her friends. As the sole member of her family to leave home and pursue higher education, she writes about this parallel American universe with the objectivity distance provides and the intimacy of utter familiarity. A brutal world rendered beautifully, Jesmyn Ward's memoir will sit comfortably alongside Edwidge Danticat's Brother, I'm Dying, Tobias Wolff's This Boy's Life, and Maya Angelou's I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.

Tub 84 put to bed!


HIGHLIGHTS..... Edward Bunker, Colin Bateman, Richard Stark, Rory Flynn, Carl Hiaasen, Bill Pronzini, Andrew Vachss

LOWLIGHTS...... nothing too uninteresting, though the HANS FALLADA book isn't singing out to me.

FULL LIST OF 50 AS FOLLOWS:


AUTHOR TITLE YEAR SERIES
ARMITAGE SIMON LITTLE GREEN MAN 2001
ARNOTT JAKE JOHNNY COME HOME 2006
BATEMAN COLIN DIVORCING JACK 1995 DS1
BUNKER EDWARD STARK 2007
COLE MARTINA THE JUMP 1995
CROSS NEIL HOLLOWAY FALLS 2003
CROSS NEIL ALWAYS THE SUN 2004
FALLADA HANS ALONE IN BERLIN 1947
FLYNN RORY THIRD RAIL 2014 EH1
FRANCIS DICK UNDER ORDERS 2006 SH4
FURST ALAN THE POLISH OFFICER 1995 NS3
GATTIS RYAN ROO KICKKICK AND THE BID BAD BLIMP 2004
HALL ADAM QUILLER BARRACUDA 1990 Q14
HAYWOOD GAR ANTHONY IT'S NOT A PRETTY SIGHT 1996 AGM4
HIAASEN CARL STORMY WEATHER 1995 S3
HURLEY GRAHAM BLOOD AND HONEY 2006 F+W6
JACOBSON HOWARD IN THE LAND OF OZ 1987
JAMES RUSSELL NO ONE GETS HURT 2003
KIRINO NATSUO OUT 2003
LE CARRE JOHN THE NAÏVE AND SENTIMENTAL LOVER 1971
LYALL GAVIN THE SECRET SERVANT 1980 HM1
LYALL GAVIN THE CONDUCT OF MAJOR MAXIM 1982 HM2
McCLURE JAMES THE STEAM PIG 1971 K+Z1
McDERMID VAL THE GRAVE TATTOO 2006
MOSLEY WALTER BLUE LIGHT 1998
O'HAGAN OONAGH I LICK MY CHEESE 2007
PARKER T. JEFFERSON LAGUNA HEAT 1985
PRONZINI BILL QUARRY 1991 N19
PRONZINI BILL BREAKDOWN 1991 N18
PRONZINI/MULLER BILL/MARCIA DOUBLE 1984 N13
RICHARDS BEN THROWING THE HOUSE OUT OF THE WINDOW 1996
RIPLEY MIKE JUST ANOTHER ANGEL 1988 FMA1
ROBINSON PETER PAST REASON HATED 1991 IB5
ROBINSON PETER FRIEND OF THE DEVIL 2007 IB17
ROZAN S. J. BLOOD RITES 2001 BS+LC7
SAKEY MARCUS THE TWO DEATHS OF DANIEL HAYES 2011
SANSOM IAN RING ROAD 2004
SILVA DANIEL THE UNLIKELY SPY 1996
SIMMS CHRIS SHIFTING SKIN 2006 DIJS2
STARK RICHARD DIRTY MONEY 2008 P24
STARLING BORIS VISIBILITY 2006
SYMMONS ROBERTS MICHAEL PATRICK'S ALPHABET 2006
THOMAS PAUL FALLOUT 2015 TI5
THOMPSON NEVILLE STREETWISE (ed.) 2004
UNSWORTH CATHI THE NOT KNOWING 2005
VACHSS ANDREW BORN BAD 1986
WARD JESMYN MEN WE REAPED 2013
WILLIAMS CONRAD DUST AND DESIRE 2015 JS1
WILLOCKS TIM BLOODSTAINED KINGS 1995
WILSON CHRISTOPHER THE BALLAD OF LEE COTTON 2005

Sunday, 25 September 2016

E. MICHAEL HELMS - DEADLY DUNES (2015)


Synopsis/blurb.......

Hours after hiring Mac McClellan to investigate the supposed suicide of her archaeologist brother, single-mom Jessie dies in a car accident. Jessie had just showed Mac artifacts and a copy of a map Jake found, items that indicate Hernando de Soto and his explorers might have camped on Five Mile Island during the winter of 1539-1540. Studying the map, Mac determines the site lies in the middle of a planned resort, The Dunes. Declaring the area an historic site could shut the project down. Suspicions aroused, he forges ahead, even though he no longer has a paying client. 

Everywhere Mac turns, greed abounds, and no one he interviews seems innocent, even Jessie's closest friends the Deckers, who have adopted her teenage daughter. Ron Decker's construction company is building the Dunes, and he is heavily invested in its success. Then there is the oily son and ex-stripper wife of an old curmudgeon who won't sell the one lot the project still needs to acquire. Jake's estranged wife Laurel had plenty to gain from his death, and as Mac continues to dig, he begins to wonder if Jessie herself had more at stake than he was led to believe. 

No one is happy about Mac's persistence, and someone is unhappy enough to crash his truck and frame him for yet another murder. But Mac isn't giving up, no matter what the cost. 

Book 3 in the Mac McClellan Mystery series.

My third time with author E. Michael Helms and his series character, ex-career soldier, turned PI, Mac McLellan.  The first two in the series, Deadly Catch and Deadly Ruse were enjoyed before.

Mac is entrusted by boss Frank Hightower with his first case - a grieving sister is unconvinced by her brother's recent death being written off as suicide. Mac is hired to look into things. The background being that the recently deceased Jake was an archaeologist and he claimed to have discovered some historic artifacts that could put a proposed property development in doubt.

A day after he signs on, his client dies in a freak automobile accident. Unwilling to believe in such an unlikely occurrence being accidental, Mac without a client and against the wishes of his boss has himself a murder, possibly two to investigate.

With a massive resort development and money to be made, or conversely money to be lost if the site gets closed down - profit or ruin can provide a powerful motive for murder. Mac's inquiries throw up a few candidates and reveal some secrets of a personal nature when he digs into our dead siblings - Jessie and Jake's extended families. I needed a wall chart to keep track of the bedroom shenanigans, something Helms chooses to allude to as opposed to graphically depict. Who did what to whom and when and what consequences subsequently transpired.

There's a few memorable characters encountered along the way. Amos Moats is an eccentric and the last hold-out refusing to sell his land to the developers. When Mac persuades hims to put down the shotgun long enough for a chat, he discovers Moats' ex-stripper wife left him for his own son - a sleazy lawyer. Fair play to her though, she does drop by once a month to do her wifely duty!

Mac away from the case, has his blossoming romance with girlfriend Kate still burning bright - and there's just the right amount of personal thrown into the tale to keep it fresh and interesting. The banter between the pair adds to the story.

Overall - interesting, enjoyable and engaging. Plenty to like here - decent story, likable main characters, action, humour and a decent resolution. Plenty of legs in Helms' Mac McLellan yet.

4 from 5

E. Michael Helms has a website here.
He's on Twitter - @EMichaelHelms

Michael has appeared on the blog previously, answering a few questions here.

Read in September, 2016

My copy of Deadly Dunes was provided by the publisher Camel Press - thanks!

Saturday, 24 September 2016

AUGUST 2016 - READING LIST AND PICK OF THE MONTH



Eight books read in the month, which I'm fairly happy with. Ideally I would have liked to have hit the 10 mark, but I was sufficiently advanced with 2 of my part-reads to be able to mark up 2 on the 1st day of September.

The eight were.........

Frank Bill - Crimes in Southern Indiana (2011) (4.5)

Dave Warner  - City of Light (1995) (4)

A. R. Arrington - Mirage Colorado: Road to Redemption (2016) (4)

V. H. Leslie - Bodies of Water (2016) (4)

Adam Maxwell - The Dali Deception (2016) (4)

Luca Veste - It Never Leaves You (2016) (4)

Iain Ryan - Drainland (2016) (4.5)

Douglas Skelton - Blood City (2013) (5)


I did also read 31 varying short stories in the month - see here.

Book of the Month  Well one 5 star read and an obvious pick of the month - Douglas Skelton's Blood City

Of the rest - 2 reads at 4.5 and 5 rating 4 stars 

A bit more trivia or data........

4 of the 8 were new-to-me authors, 4 have been read before - Douglas Skelton, Luca Veste, Adam Maxwell and Iain Ryan.

No surprises here - 7 dudes, only 1 dudess - V. H. Leslie. (Same as last month.)



2 authors hail from the US, 2 from Australia, 2 from England1 from Scotland, 1 from Britain (I can't get any more specific than that!)

All 8 reads were fiction.

4 were paperback reads, 3 were Kindle editions, 1 was an audio book.

7 from this decade - 2 from this year. 1 from the 1990s.

3 of the 8 books were pre-owned, though 1 was a recent Amazon Freebie, 2 were kindly sent by the authors, 2 were sent to me by publishers - Robot Ronin Press and Salt Publishing and 1 from my local library.

Favourite cover? Crimes in Southern Indiana by some distance.

Total page count = 1822


1 < 50,
1 between 51 < 100,
1 between 101 < 200,
2 between 201 < 300,
2 between 301 < 400,
1 > 400 pages  - 406 Dave Warner's City of Light.


Friday, 23 September 2016

AUGUST 2016 - ADDITIONS TO THE LIBRARY...SOME OF AT LEAST....

A few more on to the imaginary shelves (device and desk drawer actually) in the month....
Latest from Brit Grit author - Paul D. Brazill - copy kindly sent by the man himself.
A killer priest is on the rampage across London and an egotistical Hollywood action movie star is out for revenge when is his precious comic book collection is stolen.Meanwhile, gangster Marty Cook's dreams of going legit swiftly turn pear shaped when one of his bouncers accidentally kills one of his salsa club's regular customers.Razor sharp wisecracks, gaudy characters and even gaudier situations abound in Cold London Blues, a violent and pitch-black Brit Grit comedy of errors.

Third book from Mike McCrary - copy received from author! Currently reading!
Art is about to imitate a life of crime. Jasper knows you don’t quit the movie business. The movie business quits you. He wants back in – Badly. Needs a comeback – Badly. And Jasper truly believes he can make a movie Hollywood will want – Badly. Genuinely Dangerous follows the nightmarish yet hilarious journey of Jasper Tripp, a down-and-out filmmaker who embeds himself in a crew of wild and mysterious criminals so he can film a documentary that’ll land him back in the Hollywood fast lane. From Mike McCrary, author of REMO WENT ROGUE, comes another unfiltered, unpredictable romp of a thriller where the insane becomes sane and life itself becomes Genuinely Dangerous.


Copy received from publisher - All Due Respect!
For ex-con and pool cleaning man Jess Forsyth, life is a California rhythm of surf, work, tacos, and drink. He’s gone straight, and he’s happy with that…Sort of. When he runs into an old pal, Jess finds himself taking money (and pride) from a well-heeled drug dealer. But things get twisted. On the journey that follows, Jess discovers you can’t escape what you are, especially when there’s cash for the taking. There are three kinds of fool in this life—the lost, the guilty, and the dead. But who the heck is who?

“Reminiscent of Irvine Welsh’s ‘Crime’ but with that Southern Californian feel that only sex, guns, drugs, murder and surfboards can bring to the party…” – Grant Nicol (author of On A Small Island, The Mistake and A Place To Bury Strangers)

"Matt Phillips speaks fluently the language of the dispossessed... His whiskey-soaked prose can at times be as slick as a man slinging snake-oil, and other times as brutal as a baseball bat to the head." – Eryk Pruitt (author of Hashtag and Dirtbags)

"Phillips' writing is so multi-layered and deep... [A]n author to watch out for..." – Regular Guy Reading Noir

"[Phillips] paints sharp, cutting scenes... He peppers the action with tight quips, imagining a very true world through a very discerning set of eyes." – Tim Learn (author of the‘Chewy-Noh series)

South African king of crime fiction - FREE AUDIBLE DOWNLOAD (12 hours plus..WTF!)
Why would a mathematics professor from Cambridge University, renting a holiday home outside Cape Town, require a false identity and three bodyguards? And where is he, now that they are dead? The only clue to the bodyguards' murder is the snake engraved on the shell casings of the bullets that killed them.
Investigating the massacre, Benny Griessel and his team find themselves being drawn into an international conspiracy with shocking implications. It seems it is not just the terrorists and criminals of Britain and South Africa who may fear the Professor's work, but the politicians too.
As the body count begins to spiral viciously, Benny must put his new-found love life aside and focus on finding the one person who could give him a break in the case: a teenage pickpocket on the run in the city. But Benny is not the only person hunting for Tyrone Kleinbooi . . .
Shortlisted for the CWA International Dagger, COBRA is a relentlessly suspenseful, topical and richly rewarding novel from an author who is acclaimed around the world as a brilliant voice in crime fiction.

Already featured on the blog last month - copy from publisher!
A cop killer on the loose in Cardiff - introducing a dark and gritty new voice in crime fiction, perfect for fans of Stuart MacBride and David Mark

At a squalid flat near the Cardiff docks, an early morning police raid goes catastrophically wrong when the police aren't the only unexpected guests. A plain clothes officer is shot dead at point blank range, the original suspect is left in a coma. The killer, identity unknown, slips away.

Young and inexperienced, Will MacReady starts his first day on the CID. With the city in shock and the entire force reeling, he is desperate to help ­- but unearths truths that lead the team down an increasingly dark path...

Previously enjoyed author, a year or two ago - bought copy on Amazon.
S. C. HARKER.....

Returns to Binnacle Bay with a novel about small town life – and death

When unidentified man is found dead at the Cape Incognita lighthouse, Police Chief Pat Fitzlaff, begins an investigation that will reach over twenty years into the past to expose the dark legacy of a brutal crime. Pat reunites with Murphy, the giant, loveable hound, and connects the past to the present to uncover the shocking truth.

Copy from publisher!
A new instalment in the most famous series from the father of Italian crime fiction

Death is in the air at one of Milan's great fashion houses. As a new collection is unveiled, and the wealthy rub shoulders with the glamorous, owner Cristiana O'Brian escapes upstairs to discover the strangled body of her servant slumped on her bed - a single orchid by his side.

When Inspector Di Vicenzi is called in to investigate, the brilliant detective is puzzled; why is Cristiana behaving so suspiciously? And what is her estranged ex-husband doing there? As two further corpses appear, each accompanied by an orchid, Di Vicenzi must see through dirty tricks and slippery clues in order to uncover the real killer.

Augusto De Angelis's notorious sleuth returns in a cryptic murder mystery teeming with blackmail, deceit and revenge.

Augusto De Angelis (1888-1944) was an Italian novelist and journalist, most famous for his series of detective novels featuring Commissario Carlo De Vincenzi. His cultured protagonist was enormously popular in Italy, but the Fascist government of the time considered him an enemy, and during the Second World War he was imprisoned by the authorities. Shortly after his release he was beaten up by a Fascist activist and died from his injuries. The Murdered Banker and The Hotel of the Three Roses are also available from Pushkin Vertigo.

Copy received from publisher - lucky me!
We ll lock you both up in the same jail cell... a tough one... the sort of place that gives kindly old ladies the shivers.

At one of France s toughest prisons, an undercover cop is attempting to trap an enemy spy by posing as a fellow inmate. So Frank and Hal find themselves holed up together in a grimy, rat-infested cell, each warily eyeing the other. As they plan a daring escape, an unexpected friendship ensues but which is the cop and which is the spy?

'The French master of noir' Observer

Gritty and hard-hitting, The Wicked Go to Hell is a tense, paranoid fifties thriller about duty and conscience, deception and loyalty, and about what it means to be human whether you re the good guy or not.

Frédéric Dard (1921-2000) was one of the best known and loved French crime writers of the twentieth century. Enormously prolific, he wrote hundreds of thrillers, suspense stories, plays and screenplays throughout his long and illustrious career. Bird in a Cage, Crush and The Executioner Weeps (for which he won the 1957 Grand prix de littérature policière) will also be published by Pushkin Vertigo.

Bought copy when it was free on Amazon in the month. Found the actual book in the tubs a day or two afterwards!
“All Hat is a winner all the way.” — The Globe and Mail

Ray Dokes is fresh out of prison and fresh out of options…

He’s determined to turn his life around and stay out of trouble, but that means avoiding Sonny Stanton – the rich and violent heir of a thoroughbred dynasty

Two horses – one an arrogant creature that’ll bite you as soon as you look away, the other gentle and friendly.

But only one of them is worth more than a million dollars.

Stanton is a rich man and Ray is just an ex-convict.

But only one of them is a cruel man.

Ray soon learns that appearances can be deceptive.

When Stanton starts buying up all the local farmland, only one person is left standing in his way in a last-ditch effort to save her family farm - Etta Parr, Ray’s old flame.

However, when Stanton oversteps the mark yet again, Ray and his trusty gang have a taste for revenge.

But Ray has to be careful.

One wrong move and he’ll find himself back behind bars.

And this time, they’ll be no getting out…


Bought copy from Amazon!
A SERIAL KILLER STALKS THE STREETS...
Shawnee Daniels - computer forensics specialist/hacker for RPD by day, cat burglar by night - always believed her "fearlessness rules" mantra would keep her on top and out of jail. When she hacks a confiscated hard drive at the Revere P.D., she focuses on a white-collar criminal accused of embezzlement. To teach him a lesson and recoup the funds she breaks into his massive contemporary in Bear Clave Estates. Jack has even more secrets, deadly secrets, secrets worth killing over.

A CAT BURGLAR PICKS THE WRONG HOUSE TO ROB...
Shawnee thinks she made it out clean until a deadly package arrives at her door soon after. He's found her. As a glowing eagle taunts her Skype screen, Jack tells her she stole his precious trophy box -- and he wants it back!

THEIR LIVES COLLIDE...
When her "helpful" best friend convinces her to date charismatic Detective Levaughn Samuels, her two worlds threaten to implode. Ordinarily Shawnee keeps a firm line between her professions, but dating Levaughn might help her get this psycho off her tail.

AND NOW, NO ONE IS SAFE...
In this lightning-fast-paced psychological thriller of secrets and lies, Shawnee juggles being stalked by a serial killer, dating the lead detective on the case, and tap dancing around her librarian best friend.If she doesn't find the trophy box, the killer's coming for her. If she doesn't expose her secrets and lies, more will die. And if she does, she could lose her freedom and everyone she holds dear.


Copy from author who I've read previously. CURRENTLY FREE ON AMAZON KINDLE - so I bought it as well!
The body count is rising…

When psychopath Daniel Moxley makes his escape while being escorted to Broadmoor high security prison, he sets off on a trail of bloody revenge, leaving police forces throughout the north of England floundering in his wake.

Moxley’s paranoia has him seemingly selecting victims at random. The only thing they have in common is the gruesome nature of their killings. Police, prison warders and even old ladies have been the target of Moxley’s cold-blooded murder spree.

When Detective Inspector Vinnie Palmer is assigned to the case, Moxley decides that he too must die, but not before he has led him from one blood-soaked scene to another. Among his victims is Vinnie’s offsider, Detective Constable Rob Hill, who he discovers has his own dark and destructive secret that rips Vinnie’s life apart.

With the help of Moxley’s psychiatrist, Vinnie delves deep into the man’s criminal past and uncovers a history of corrupt police, sexual coercion and gaol brutality. But when Vinnie closes in on Moxley and takes the law into his own hands, he ends up suspended and stripped of his police powers.

Determined not to let Moxley escape justice, Vinnie continues his pursuit of the maniac as a private citizen. He teams up with determined television reporter Christine Jones and together they pursue Moxley north to Scotland and back again. But the killer always seems to be one step ahead, leaving a trail mutilated bodies in his wake.

Lured on by Moxley’s taunts, Vinnie discovers that it is his own wife – a fellow police worker – who has been an unwitting aid in Moxley’s deadly deeds.

As a result, his suspension is lifted in time for him and Christine to gain full police support and finally confront Moxley in a terrifying final encounter.

But is it too late?

Roger A Price is a crime fighter turned crime writer who spent more than thirty-one years in the police force. He served across the UK, Europe and the Far East before retiring as a detective inspector in charge of a covert undercover drugs unit that achieved national acclaim.

French Noir from the publisher!
A widow's quiet retirement in the foothills of the Alps is turned upside down by the arrival of a mysterious stranger.

Recently widowed grandmother Éliette is returning to her home in the mountains when her micro-car breaks down. A stranger comes to her aid on foot. Éliette offers him a lift, glad of the interruption to her humdrum routine. That night, her neighbours' son is killed in a road accident. Could the tragedy be linked to the arrival of her good Samaritan?