Things are bad. But they’re not as bad as you think. Scotland’s premier crime fiction author, Ian Rankin, is still writing about his Edinburgh detective John Rebus and long may that continue. A Song for the Dark Times is our lead book this week and at the same time we bring you news of releases by Elly Griffiths, Michael Carter, Stuart Turton and MC Beaton, just in time for Lockdown Part II…
A Song for the Dark Times by Ian Rankin
Sounds like the perfect title for these COVID-19 days, doesn’t it? And dark times indeed are ahead for John Rebus as he must tussle between torn loyalties in A Song for the Dark Times, out on 1 October. It all begins with a late night phone call – never a good sign. The caller is Rebus’s daughter, Samantha, and she is distraught. Her husband has been missing for two days and she has nowhere else to turn. They’ve had a fraught relationship in the past, but as Rebus takes to the road in the early hours to be with his daughter he wonders whether he is travelling as a father or a detective and what he is about to discover will certainly test both of those roles. Perfect for lovers of Scottish crime fiction.
The Postscript Murders by Elly Griffiths
Elly Griffiths is best known for the hugely popular Dr Ruth Galloway books and the Brighton Mysteries series but a recent stand alone, The Stranger Diaries, showed she has another string to her bow. Anyone who read the latter will recall DS Harbinder Kaur. Well, now he’s back in The Postscript Murders, another standalone tale, out 1 October. Kaur is called in when 90-year-old Peggy Smith dies in a sheltered accommodation flat in Shoreham-by-Sea in West Sussex. All looks peaceful and above board, but Peggy’s carer Natalka is convinced the old lady was murdered. As she digs deeper, Natalka begins to realise how little she knew about her elderly charge…
The Mathematical Murder of Innocence by Michael Carter
Probably. It’s not enough under the law to put someone away for murder, but it has happened and that’s what Michael Carter plays with in his courtroom drama The Mathematical Murder of Innocence. In it, a mother who has seen two of her infants die of cot death is accused of murder and statistical evidence is used against her. But are the rules of probability being properly explained to the jury? Michael Carter’s book was inspired by the real case of Sally Clark, wrongly convicted in 1999, and will appeal to lovers of crime fiction and numbers. Out 28 September.
The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton
Stuart Turton made plenty of waves with his debut, The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle, which won the Costa Best First Novel Award. Now he’s back with a whodunit set in the 17th century, out on 1 October. It is 1634, and Samuel Pipps, the world’s greatest detective, is on a ship sailing from the Dutch East Indies to Amsterdam, where he is to face trial for murder. Did he do it? His loyal friend and bodyguard Arent Hayes isn’t convinced, and he sets out to prove Pipps’ innocence. But strange things are occurring on board the vessel and soon the lives of everyone on board are……
Agatha Raisin Hot to Trot by MC Beaton with RW Green
The author MC Beaton sadly passed away late in 2019, and Hot to Trot was written by her friend RW Green and approved by the author before she died. The Cotswold sleuth returns and is herself under suspicion of murder alongside Sir Charles Faith. With a wedding, masked ball and action taking place in the world of showjumping, Raisin will need more than a lucky horseshoe to save herself and Sir Charles from whoever might have set them up… Cosy crime fiction out 1 October.