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Firstly, I would like to wish you all Happy New Year and all the very best for 2018. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank you all for visiting This March we will have been going for thirteen years. Back in 2005, starting a website seemed a bit of fun that may be looked at by a handful of people. Little did I realise what opportunities would open up for me and how quickly we would be embraced by readers and publishers alike right across the globe! So, will there be an anniversary celebration? Not quite, but as with us all thirteen years down the line, a website also needs a makeover and that is what I intend to do in 2018. Not so drastic that it entirely changes the layout, but maybe a little nip and tuck here and there. That is something I could definitely do with myself! I would also like to thank my amazing reviewers, past and present. Without their love for the crime genre and dedication, a lot of the reviews we have done over the years (and there are a lot of them), would not have been possible. So, thank you, Helen Avery, Sylvia Dixon, Sarah Ward, Graham Smith, Michael J. Malone, Michael Wood, Jo Turner, Jim Gracie, Cathi Unsworth and Danuta Kot (our newbie of the bunch and very welcome is Danuta!). Now you know who is who when it comes to the initials below each review. Hereís hoping 2018 is a stellar year for us all!

January Author of the Month is Rene Denfeld and her superb and haunting, The Child Finder. Madison Culver disappeared three years ago in a snowy wood whilst her parents collected the perfect Christmas tree. Madison vanished without a trace and now desperate for something concrete, her parents contact Naomi Cottle who has a reputation of finding missing children. Is Madison dead or was she abducted? Denfeld uses the alluring snowy backdrop to show how deceiving and dangerous the snow can be, how it can lead you in the totally wrong direction. This is a crime novel weaved with mysticism and folklore which also pulls at your emotions. This is a very powerful novel.

Fresh Blood for January is a chilling and very assured thriller called The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor. This is one of the most gripping psychological thrillers I have read in a long time. The characters are wonderfully drawn and the sense of place, especially in 1986 is sublime. It is difficult to imagine this is a debut as it is so good! The bar has been set very high here.

It has only just come to me since writing the above that both deal in different ways how vulnerable children are and how adults can corrupt the innocent. This wasnít pre-planned, but strange how both deal with the same issue in varying ways. Both Denfeld and Tudor are much worthy of reading.

Reviews this month include Matt Hilton, Stuart MacBride, Frances Brody, Ann Granger, Sara Paretsky and Kaira Rouda , More reviews will be online over the next few weeks.

Classic Crime will be on by next week. This is another great classic from another forgotten writer of yesteryear.

That lovely man, Christopher Fowler has written a wonderful piece on his new release, The Book of Forgotten Authors for our Events page.

The Penguin microsite features Alastair Gunn to celebrate the impending arrival of his new D.I. Antonia Hawkins novel arriving on the 16th November, Cold Christmas. In the small village of Cold Christmas there's a church that faces the wrong way. What has it to do with the three dead men found in a London flat? DCI Antonia Hawkins has a killer to catch. Only she can't predict what is waiting for her at the end of the chase.

Penguin Microsite

A new Top Ten of our favourite books of 2017 will be online soon.

To check out all our past reviews use the Review Archive. Search under author surname and author Christian name if you canít 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 twelve 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.