I love the expression “dog days”. Apparently it has its origins in astrology, and refers to the position of Sirius, the Dog Star. The dog days of summer are round about now, when everything seems to slow down, schools are out, parliament is in recess, and newspapers struggle to find newsworthy headlines. There are no dog days in crime publishing though, and I have three intriguing novels to highlight.
SHAMUS DUST by Janet Roger
This has the best subtitle ever – “HARD WINTER, COLD WAR, COOL MURDER” A well-earned bonus for whichever PR person thought that one up. If it lives up to the cover description – “A British Big Sleep” – then it will be bloody good! It’s 1947, and an expat American PI called Newman is hired to solve a series of killings.
Shamus Dust will be published by Matador on 28th October. Keep an eye open for the Fully Booked review nearer the time.
THE ROOKS DIE SCREAMING by Clive Tuckett
More historical crime fiction here, but we are in Cornwall in the 1920s. The normally placid and peaceful residents of Bodmin are bolting their doors early of nights, as a determined killer picks off members of a local organisation one by one. Enter Inspector Edwards, who author Tuckett introduced in his 2018 novel The Woman With The Red Hair. Edwards’ latest case is published by Book Guild and will be available from 28th August.
THE MAN IN THE DARK by Jonathan Whitelaw
In most crime fiction books, the Devil is a metaphor, but Jonathan Whitelaw has decided that the Evil One is far too interesting a character to just float around at the edge of people’s consciousness. In Hellcorp (2018) the chap with the horns and the scaly tail advanced beyond the metaphysical and was set the task of solving an ancient crime. Now, he returns to help the cops in London solve the mystery of a terrorist kidnapping. The Man In The Dark will be published by Urbane Publications on 26th September.