Our favourite Nottingham publishers, Five Leaves, have formed a new imprint - Crime Express. The first three titles available are Claws by Stephen Booth, The Mentalist by Rod Duncan and Trouble in Mind by John Harvey. All the stories are set in the East Midlands - the Dark Peak, Leicester and Nottingham. They will soon be joined by Nicola Monaghan, whose The Okinawa Dragon will be taking us out of the region and across the globe to Japan and Clare Littleford’s The Quarry. The Crime Express books are novellas - neat flapped paperbacks, which fit snugly into the jacket for a quick read on the bus in to town, offering commuters a welcoming alternative to the iPod. The series is under the safe editorship of David Belbin.
In the wild crags of the Dark Peak moorland, a ruthless conflict has been raging for years. The discovery of an illegal haul from the bedroom of a terraced house is a clue to what might be at stake-perhaps the entire future of one of the most prized landscapes in the Peak District National Park. For young Derbyshire police detective D.C.Ben Cooper, an assignment to the Rural Crime Team means stepping into the middle of the conflict, without being quite sure whose side he’s on. The predators come in all shapes and sizes. And in this battle, not all victims will be human...
D.C Ben Cooper and D.S Diane Fry have appeared in eight of Stephen Booth’s others novels, which have been translated into fifteen languages.
Enthusiasts call Harry Gysel a psychic. To others he is a fraud, a meddler in the occult. When he appears to predict the death of a woman in the audience of one of his shows and that woman is subsequently found murdered, Harry becomes an instant celebrity. But chief Inspector Morgan isn’t so easily convinced.
‘You’ve come here to find the truth’, says Harry Gysel to the audience, but the truth is not so easy to find.
Rod Duncan is the author of a trilogy of novels based around a fictional riot in Leicester: Backlash, Breakbeat and Burnout. Burnout was shortlisted for the John Creasy award for the best debut crime novel of the year.
Jack Kiley, a professional footballer turned private investigator, is hired to track down a soldier who has gone missing while on leave from Iraq. The soldier’s mind is disturbed by what he has seen and done in the war, and he is armed. There are fears both for the man himself and for the safety of his estranged wife and two young children.
Kiley’s search leads him to Nottingham, where he teams up with D.I. Charlie Resnick, who, somewhat ruefully, remembers Kiley from the one appearance he made at Meadow Lane, coming off the bench for Charlton Athletic to play against Notts County in the F.A.Cup. Together they search the house where the soldier’s wife and children have been living and find them gone, almost certainly taken against their will…the only question now, will they find them before it is too late?
John Harvey is the author of ten Charlie Resnick novels. In 2007 he was awarded the British Crime Writers’ Association Cartier Diamond Dagger for Sustained Excellence in Crime Writing.
Five Leaves are also the joint organiser of a crime fiction weekend in Lowdham, Nottinghamshire, over 23-25th November and is a spin off from their summer book festival. So if you enjoy these novellas get down there. The weekend includes a book group on Kate Atkinson’s crime novels; a crime writing workshop (“Write a crime novel in an afternoon”) with Danuta Reah; Crème de la Crime explaining what publishers are looking for; a panel of prize winning new novelists – Nicola Monaghan, Allan Guthrie and Chris Ewan; “Mystery and History” with Michael Jecks, John Wilcox and Karen Maitland; John Martin on the settings for crime fiction; “Crime by Candlelight” – stories and readings by Nicky Rafferty, Eve Griffiths and Elizabeth Baguley; Colin Dexter puts in an appearance talking about Inspector Morse; John Harvey, Michael Eaton and Giles Croft discuss murder on stage, screen and TV; an Agatha Christie evening with Laura Thompson and a showing of “Death on the Nile”.
John Harvey, Stephen Booth and Rod Duncan will be reading extracts from their novellas at Lowdham Village Hall, Main Street, Lowdham, Nottinghamshire on Sunday the 25th November at 5pm
Tickets: £3 from 0115 966 3219