Crime fiction reviewed by Andrew Taylor

An epigraph taken from Goebbels’s only published novel certainly makes a book stand out from the crowd. A Man Without…

Recent crime fiction

John Lawton’s Inspector Troy series constantly surprises.

Recent crime fiction

Henning Mankell bestrides the landscape of Scandavian crime fiction like a despondent colossus.

Mean streets

The best recent crime thrillers have an urban setting, according to Andrew Taylor

Troubled waters

This is the fifth in C. J. Sansom’s engrossing series of Tudor crime novels.


Innocents abroad

In John le Carré’s fiction, personal morality collides messily with the grimly cynical expediencies of global politics.


Dark Satanic thrills

If you have not yet gone on holiday, do pack The Anatomy of Ghosts. It is excellent airport reading; and this is no trivial recommendation.


Fearful symmetry

Kate Atkinson’s latest novel is the fourth in her series about Jackson Brodie, the ex-soldier, ex-police officer and ex-husband who now works in a desultory way as a private investigator.

A choice of first novels

Write what you know. Isn’t that what aspiring novelists are told?


Good at bad guys

Thriller writers, like wolves and old Etonians, hunt in packs.


In and out of every dive

Robert Coover’s Noir is a graphic novel.


Out for blood

Unless you have spent the last couple of years packed in soil on a boat bound for Whitby, you will have noticed that vampires are back in fashion.


The loss of innocents

Here are two novels about that most harrowing and haunting of subjects — children who go missing.


Missing link

In times of anxiety or confusion the most effective palliative is a good detective story. The requirement is that a sense of justice be restored, and, paradoxically, given the fictional events portrayed, a much desired sense of order. The effect is transitory but reliable.


Street eloquence

The title of Jon McGregor’s third novel derives from an anecdote told by one of the many vivid, dispossessed characters whose voices burst from its pages: Steve is a homeless ex-soldier who agrees to help deliver a lorry-load of aid to a Bosnian town, but is turned back on the grounds that ‘even the dogs’ there are dead.


From gloom to dispair

In little more than a decade, the cosy world of Anglo-American crime fiction has been transformed by wave after wave of Scandinavian invaders.

Recent crime novels

Blue Lightning (Macmillan, £16.99) is the fourth novel in Ann Cleeves’ excellent Shetland quartet.

Recent crime novels

Fever of the Bone (Little, Brown, £18.99) is the sixth novel in Val McDermid’s Jordan and Hill series.

New departures

For a crime writer, success comes with its dark side.

Good women and bad men

Just in case you hadn’t guessed after nearly 1,800 pages of the ‘Millennium’ trilogy, the late Stieg Larsson has his alter-ego hero Mikel Blomkvist spell it out.

A dogged foe

Old detectives rarely die — or age, for that matter: Poirot is forever 60, Sherlock Holmes 50, P. D. James’s Adam Dalgliesh a handsome 38 or so. 

Fatal attractions

The Oxford Despoiler, by Gary Dexter
Twisted Wing, by Ruth Newman
Windows on the Moon, by Alan Brownjohn

Recent crime novels

The Ignorance of Blood (Harper Collins, £17.99) is the fourth of Robert Wilson’s novels to feature Inspector Javier Falcon of Seville, and it completes a planned quartet examining some of the demons, old and new, plaguing modern Spain.


Mysteries of Paris

The Chalk Circle Man, by Fred Vargas, translated

A choice of crime novels

Andrew Taylor reviews a selection of recent crime novels