Our Christmas Top Picks: Crime and Thriller Books

Our Christmas Top Picks: Crime and Thriller Books

Betrayal

Jade’s been in the game a lot longer than Aiden. She knows no one’s indestructible. And when you’re at the top, that’s when you’ve got to watch the hardest. Especially the ones closest to you …

The Whistler

Lacy Stoltz never expected to be in the firing line. Investigating judicial misconduct by Florida’s one thousand judges, her cases so far have been relatively unexciting. That’s until she meets Greg Myers, an indicted lawyer with an assumed name, who has an extraordinary tale to tell.

Magpie Murders

When editor Susan Ryeland is given the tattered manuscript of Alan Conway’s latest novel, she has little idea it will change her life. She’s worked with the revered crime writer for years and his detective, Atticus Pund, is renowned for solving crimes in the sleepy English villages of the 1950s.

Rather Be The Devil

For John Rebus, forty years may have passed, but the death of beautiful, promiscuous Maria Turquand still preys on his mind. Murdered in her hotel room on the night a famous rock star and his entourage were staying there, Maria’s killer has never been found. 

Holding

Darkly comic, touching and at times profoundly sad. Graham Norton employs his acerbic wit to breathe life into a host of loveable characters, and explore – with searing honesty – the complexities and contradictions that make us human.

Night School

In the morning, they gave Reacher a medal. And in the afternoon, they sent him back to school. Night School takes Reacher back to his army days, but this time he’s not in uniform. 

CLOSED CASKET: The New Hercule Poirot Mystery

Hercule Poirot returns in another brilliant murder mystery that can only be solved by the eponymous Belgian detective and his ‘little grey cells’. ‘What I intend to say to you will come as a shock …’ 

The Couple Next Door

The Couple Next Door announces a major new talent in thriller writing. You never know what’s happening on the other side of the wall.

Chaos

In this latest in the bestselling series featuring medical examiner Dr. Kay Scarpetta, Cornwell shows us once again why she is the world’s number one bestselling crime writer, mistress of the shocking turns, delicious thrills, and state-of-the-art forensic details that all fans of suspense have come to love.

Out of Bounds

When a teenage joyrider crashes a stolen car, a routine DNA test could be the key to unlocking the mystery of a twenty-year-old murder inquiry. Detective Chief Inspector Karen Pirie is an expert at solving the unsolvable.

Mistletoe Murder and Other Stories, The

As the acknowledged ‘Queen of Crime’, P. D. James was frequently commissioned by newspapers and magazines to write a special short story for Christmas. Four of the best of these have been drawn from the archives and published here.

Cross the Line

Alex Cross chases a cold-blooded killer…with a conscience. Shots ring out in the early morning hours in the suburbs of Washington, D.C. When the smoke clears, a prominent police official lies dead, leaving the city’s police force scrambling for answers. 

Conclave

The Pope is dead. Behind the locked doors of the Sistine Chapel, one hundred and eighteen cardinals from all over the globe will cast their votes in the world’s most secretive election. 

Home

A decade ago, kidnappers grabbed two boys from wealthy families and demanded ransom, then went silent. No trace of the boys ever surfaced. 

The Wrong Side of Goodbye

Harry Bosch is working as a part-time detective in the town of San Fernando outside of Los Angeles, when he gets the invitation to meet with the ageing aviation billionaire Whitney Vance.

The Twenty-Three

The day begins like any other Saturday – a shower, coffee, breakfast. But suddenly, all hell breaks loose in the town of Promise Falls. People are dying in the street – the hospital and emergency services are overwhelmed by sheer numbers. 

Framed

Frankie James is a young man with a lot on his shoulders. His mother disappeared when he was fifteen; his father’s in jail for armed robbery; and he owes rent on the SoHo snooker club he inherited to one of London’s toughest gangsters.

Triple Crown

Jeff Hinkley, a British Horseracing Authority investigator, has been seconded to the US Federal Anti-Corruption in Sports Agency (FACSA) where he has been asked to find a mole in their organisation, an informant who is passing on confidential information to fix races.

Jack Reacher: Never Go Back

Drop-out military cop Jack Reacher has finally hitch-hiked his way to Virginia. His destination, the closest thing to a home he ever had: the headquarters of his old unit, the 110th Military Police.

Cold Earth

Cold Earth is the seventh book in Ann Cleeves’ Shetland series – a major BBC One drama starring Douglas Henshall. In the dark days of a Shetland winter, torrential rain triggers a landslide that crosses the main Lerwick-Sumburgh road and sweeps down to the sea.

Every Dark Corner

Special Agent Kate Coppola’s mission is to stop the growing menace of domestic human trafficking, starting with the customers and suppliers of the now-broken Cincinnati trafficking ring. Decker’s new revelation is her worst nightmare – one of the traffickers’ customers is acquiring teens for the Internet sex trade.

First Response

London is under siege. Nine men in suicide vests primed to explode hold hostages in nine different locations around the city, and are ready to die for their cause. Their mission: to force the government to release jihadist prisoners from Belmarsh Prison.

No Man’s Land

No Man’s Land by David Baldacci is an exciting thriller featuring special investigator John Puller, who is pursuing a case that will send him deep into his own troubled past.

Hide and Seek

Detective Inspector Helen Grace has spent her whole life running. From the past. From herself. From everyone who’s ever tried to get close to her. She’s spent her whole life hiding. Behind the badge. 

Gallows Drop

At dawn on a lonely stretch of road, a body is found hanging from an ancient gallows the morning after a country show. Hours earlier, DCI Kate Daniels had seen the victim alive. With her leave period imminent, she’s forced to step aside when DCI James Atkins is called in to investigate. 

Too Close For Comfort

Mia Cosgrove is a high-flying psychotherapist with a thriving practice, but when she receives a desperate phone call from her oldest friend, Lysette, she puts her London life on hold to rush to her side.

The Blood Card

Elizabeth II’s coronation is looming, but the murder of their wartime commander, Colonel Cartwright, spoils the happy mood for DI Edgar Stephens and magician Max Mephisto. A playbill featuring another deceased comrade is found in Colonel Cartwright’s possession, and a playing card, the ace of hearts: the blood card. 

Far from True

 A freak accident has killed Lucy Brighton’s father. And when she goes to his house, she’s convinced that someone has broken in. She asks private investigator Cal Weaver to look into it – but isn’t prepared for what he’ll find.

Hidden Killers

Hidden Killers sees Jane acting as a ‘decoy’ prostitute, with the hope of capturing a suspect wanted for numerous sexual assaults. The attacker is drawn in and put under arrest. Commended for bravery in the case, Jane is given CID status and moves from Hackney to Bow Street Station as Detective. 

I See You

When Zoe Walker sees her photo in the classifieds section of a London newspaper, she is determined to find out why it’s there. There’s no explanation, no website: just a grainy image and a phone number.

None but the Dead

When human remains are discovered to the rear of an old primary school, forensic expert Dr Rhona MacLeod and her assistant arrive to excavate the grave. Approaching midwinter, they find daylight in short supply, the weather inhospitable and some of the island’s inhabitants less than co-operative.

Why Did You Lie?

A journalist on the track of an old case attempts suicide. An ordinary couple return from a house swap in the states to find their home in disarray and their guests seemingly missing.

Nomad

A terrorist attack is coming, one bigger and more deadly than has ever been seen before. With the eyes of the security establishment elsewhere, only Lucy and Marc can stop the attack before it’s too late.

Stay Dead

Annie Carter finally believes that life is good. She and Max are back together and she has a new and uncomplicated life sunning herself in Barbados. It’s what she’s always dreamed of. Then she gets the news that her old friend Dolly Farrell is dead, and suddenly 

The Beautiful Dead

Eve Singer needs death. With her career as a TV crime reporter flagging, she’ll do anything to satisfy her ghoulish audience. The killer needs death too. He even advertises his macabre public performances, where he hopes to show the whole world the beauty of dying.

The Girl on the Train (Film Tie-In)

It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Now Rachel has a chance to become a part of the lives she’s only watched from afar. Now they’ll see; she’s much more than just the girl on the train…

The Trespasser

This is the case she imagined. Precision-cut and savage, lithe and momentous. Antoinette Conway, the tough, abrasive detective from The Secret Place, is still on the Murder squad, but only just.

Inferno (Film Tie In)

Florence: Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon awakes in a hospital bed with no recollection of where he is or how he got there. Nor can he explain the origin of the macabre object found hidden in his belongings.

I’m Travelling Alone

When the body of a young girl is found hanging from a tree, the only clue the police have is an airline tag around her neck. It reads ‘I’m travelling alone’. In response, police investigator Holger Munch is immediately charged with assembling a special homicide unit. 

Blood Wedding

Sophie is haunted by the things she can’t remember – and visions from the past she will never forget. One morning, she wakes to find that the little boy in her care is dead. She has no memory of what happened. 

A Divided Spy

Thomas Kell thought he was done with spying. A former MI6 officer, he devoted his life to the Service, but it has left him with nothing but grief and a simmering anger against the Kremlin. Then Kell is offered an unexpected chance at revenge.

The Dead Woman of Deptford

On a cold November night in a Deptford yard, dock worker Harry Parker stumbles upon the body of a dead woman. Inspector Ben Ross is summoned from Scotland Yard to this insalubrious part of town, but no witness to the murder of this well-dressed, middle-aged woman can be found. 

Die of Shame

Every Monday evening, six people gather in a smart North London house to talk about addiction. There they share their deepest secrets: stories of lies, regret, and above all, shame. Then one of them is killed – and it’s clear one of the circle was responsible. 

“Wilde Lake ”

Only eighteen, AJ was cleared by a grand jury. Now, Lu wonders if the events of 1980 happened as she remembers them. What details might have been withheld from her when she was a child?

Death Comes Knocking

Together, in Death Comes Knocking, they have written a gripping account of the city’s most challenging cases, taking the reader from crime scenes and incident rooms to the morgue, and introducing some of the real-life detectives who inspired Peter James’s characters.

Playing With Fire

What if your child wanted you dead? Julia is terrified by her daughter’s aggressive behaviour. Lily has changed from an angelic little girl into someone she is afraid to be alone with.

The Woman in Blue

The murder of women priests in Norfolk’s spooky shrine town of Walsingham draws forensic archaeologist Dr Ruth Galloway into a thrilling new adventure.

The Loving Husband

Fran Hall and her husband Nathan have moved with their two children to a farmhouse on the edge of the Fens – a chance to get away from London and have a fresh start. But when Fran wakes one night to find Nathan gone, she makes a devastating discovery.

The Narrow Bed

What if having a best friend was the most dangerous thing you could do? A killer that the police are calling ‘Billy Dead Mates’ is murdering pairs of best friends, one by one. Before they die, each victim is given a small white book…

The Time to Kill

It’s been five years since Carter Blake parted ways with top-secret government operation Winterlong. They brokered a deal at the time: he’d keep quiet about what they were doing, and in return he’d be left alone. 

Tastes Like Fear

The young girl who causes the fatal car crash disappears from the scene. A runaway who doesn’t want to be found, she only wants to go home. To the one man who understands her. Gives her shelter. Just as he gives shelter to the other lost girls who live in his house. 

Witness

When Jane Kinnear sees her lover being murdered, she suddenly finds herself in danger. Taken to an anonymous police safe-house, it soon becomes clear that her lover was an MI5 informant with important information about an imminent terrorist attack.

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