Top Ten Crime Novels 0f 2013

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For our top ten crime novels of 2013 we've looked for some of the books which might have passed you by and we've largely avoided the big names. We have got some real treats for you though - in alphabetical order by author!

Who is Killing the Great Capes of Heropa? by Andrez Bergen


In search of entertainment, Jack crosses over from real world Melbourne to Heropa, where he becomes (dah daaah!) Southern Cross. However there's not much time for him to acclimatise to his new lycra-clad role or his super-power. As the new addition to The Equalizers he has work to do. The heroes of Heropa are starting to die in a totally unprecedented manner so Jack joins forces with the quartet starting with an 'e' (but with a symbol looking suspiciously like a 'z) in an attempt to restore law and order and to remain alive. For the rules have changed in this once-virtual world: death in Heropa now means death in real life too. Full review...

Seduction of the Innocent by Max Allan Collins


I've been a fan of Hard Case Crime almost since their inception in 2005. It helped that one of their early books was a novella from one of my favourite authors, namely Stephen King's The Colorado Kid, but I also love the hard-boiled style of thriller they specialise in. After just 8 years in existence, Max Allan Collins' Seduction of the Innocent already marks their 110th release and with stories like this, it's no wonder they're thriving. Full review...

Sandrine by Thomas H Cook


Sam and Sandrine Madison live the American dream. Both have jobs that they love, lecturing at the same college, an adult daughter and many memories that include a beautiful holiday in the Med. However the dream goes tragically sour. Sandrine is found dead and Sam is charged with murder despite his protestations that it was suicide. The court case begins and Sam starts a fight for his own life as the past catches up with him in unusual and unexpected ways. Full review...

Dead of Winter by Elizabeth Corley


Inspector Louise Nightingale is investigating a series of sexual attacks which are becoming increasingly violent. The latest victim is in hospital and Nightingale sees something of her younger self in the girl in the bed. Jenni has been sleeping rough. It's not her real name, but she's very insistent about the i. Superintendent Andrew Fenwick is brought in to investigate the disappearance of seventeen-year-old Isabel Mattias, the daughter of an artist and a rock star who died five years ago in a car crash. She disappeared from her exclusive boarding school, but has she run away or been abducted? Her friends seem unwilling to provide much information and even the teachers feel that respecting Issie's privacy is important. Full review...

Under Your Skin by Sabine Durrant


When household name Gaby Mortimer finds a body ion the common near her London home, it is horrible and shocking, but the one thing she doesn’t expect is to become the main suspect in the murder case. After all, she was just the one who found the poor woman’s body. Surely the Police should be spending their time searching for a more likely assailant than a perhaps past her prime TV presenter? But it soon becomes clear that Gaby is the one they are fixating on, the one to whom they will try to make the limited evidence fit. And it’s going to take everything she’s got to convince them otherwise. Full review...

The Gift of Darkness by VM Giambanco


A great multi-viewpoint murder thriller that puts VM Giambanco right up there with the best. Move over Jeffery Deaver and Patricia Cornwell, there's a new talent in town. Full review...

Under A Silent Moon by Elizabeth Haynes


The first in a new police procedural series is a cracker and promises a great deal. Highly recommended. Full review...

A Marker to Measure Drift by Alexander Maksik


Jacqueline roams the beaches of the Greek islands offering massages for money to ward off starvation. It helps but hunger is always with her, lurking alongside the memory of a former life in Liberia and the mind's ear voice of her mother. Jacqueline is at least alive and existing, but at what cost? Full review...

Honour by Elif Shafak


A novel offering a caring, insightful look at the pressures and heritage behind something we view as tragic, emotionally charged headlines. Reading Honour won't make the real life occasions any less tragic, but it does increase our understanding and realisation that sometimes the reasons aren't as clear cut as our judgement. Full review...

The Never List by Koethi Zan


Friends since childhood, Sarah and Jennifer had always admitted that they were so cautious it was daft. They'd even composed their own 'Never List'. As long as they stuck to it they'd be safe, and safe they were until that one night. The night after the college party they forgot 'Never get into the car'. They did. The next thing they're aware of is waking up in a dark cellar with two other girls; four of them altogether but only three of them will emerge. A decade later, Sarah is safe once again, living under a new name with all connections to the past wiped. But then the letter arrives; he's coming for her. It's not over after all. Full review...


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