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Since starting in 2005 there have been only two months missed in over thirteen years, which is not a bad track record. Having moved an elderly relative to be more local to me to look after him, I then went straight in to having not one, but two hospital procedures in October. Just as I was getting over one op, I had the second (on my knee btw), so again had to start again on my recuperation. I am feeling much better and so as a bonus, you will enjoy bumper e-issues of Crimesquad in November and December, giving you tons more of lovely books to choose from for yourself or loved ones over the festive season. Wishing you all the best and enjoy the reviews!

November Author of the Month is Lynda La Plante burst on to the scene with her TV series, Widows back in the 1980’s. Since then she has smashed viewing figures with Prime Suspect starring Helen Mirren in the role of D.I. Jane Tennsion. In her last four books, La Plante has gone back to Tennison’s early days as a Constable and now as a newly promoted Sergeant. One of her first cases as a Sergeant is when a woman’s body turns up in a back alley in Peckham. This discovery soon leads on to another body and then another and then… Tennison again finds herself getting emotionally involved and going against her bosses and running her own enquiries. ‘Murder Mile’ is a typically great novel from a mistress of her craft and one you will devour!

Fresh Blood for November is The Tattoo Thief by Alison Belsham. This debut introduces Marni Mullins who is feisty, no-nonsense and yet has a fragile side to her. It is always great when you are introduced to a quirky character who stays in the mind long after the book is finished and I think Marni is such a woman. This is a spiky, great debut that burns with originality.

Reviews this month include John Grisham, Ann Cleeves, Ann Granger, Elly Griffiths, Michael J. Malone and many others plus more classics from the pen of Georges Simenon.

Classic Crime is from the wonderful British Library Crime Classics series, Julian Symons and his long out-of-print psychological novel, The Colour of Murder. This is a slow burner of a book, filled with amazing insights and snapshots of the 1950's. Filled with human and criminal intrigue, this novel from 1957 stands the test of time thanks to Symons' precise writing and acute eye for detail.

Events highlights a non-fiction book called King Com by Paul Willetts. They do say that fact can be stranger than fiction and that is never shown to better effect than with this book as Willetts chronicles the life of Edgar Laplante, conman extraordinaire who fleeced millions from those who fell for his sweet patter and lies. Here, Willetts tells how he was first introduced to Edgar who pulled his greatest stunt during the 20’s and 30’s. If you wrote this as a novel, people would say they would never believe the plot! So, be prepared to swallow a lot of what Edgar got away with as truth! His story really does beggar belief!

The Penguin microsite now features Simon Lelic who with only five books under his belt, has already found a huge readership. As with our classic crime author, Julian Symons, Lelic has a wonderful eye for detail and a superb way of telling such dark tales. Read the Penguin microsite and then read our review. I guarantee you will be hooked and buy a copy!

Penguin Microsite

I have a Christmas Top Ten in place, but always feel that the Christmas madness shouldn’t start until after Guy Fawkes night has been and gone and all the fireworks have been lit, so this will be online next week and I can promise you there are some fantastic crackers for you which will enrich any Christmas stocking!

Top Ten

To check out all our past reviews use the Review Archive. Search under author surname and author Christian name if you can’t recall the surname. And for good measure you can also search under the title of the book. Simply click on the box at the top of the page and then click on to the letter of the author/title you would like to find. As you will see, we have reviewed a huge amount of books during's thirteen years. Have a wander round our archives and I hope you will find something you might have missed first time around!

If you have any comments or have a particular author you would like to see highlighted on this website please e-mail me at

Chris Simmons
Online Editor.