Crime Thriller Book Log: Sandford, Simmons, Norton & Bateman

Books. Books, books, books. New books. New, new. Books. New. Now you’re in no doubt about just where this post is going – I trust you absorbed some of that – let’s get on with a selection of the week’s new releases.

UnknownJohn Sandford’s Storm Front is the seventh Virgil Flowers novel.

Sandford is the pseudonym of John Roswell Camp, a former Pulitzer Prize winning journalist. Sandford has a number of series running, one of which features Flowers, a thrice-divorced cop in the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. He works with, and for, the protagonist of another of Sandford’s series, Lucas Davenport. Every year you can expect one book featuring Flowers and one featuring Davenport.

Anyway, here’s the blurb:

In Israel, a man clutching a backpack searches desperately for a boat. In Minnesota, Virgil Flowers gets a message from Lucas Davenport: You’re about to get a visitor. It’s an Israeli cop, and she’s tailing a man who’s smuggled out an extraordinary relic-a copper scroll revealing startling details about the man known as King Solomon.

Wait a minute, laughs Virgil. Is this one of those Da Vinci Code deals? The secret scroll, the blockbuster revelation, the teams of murderous bad guys? Should I be boning up on my Bible verses?

He looks at the cop. She’s not laughing. As it turns out, there are very bad men chasing the relic, and they don’t care who’s in the way or what they have to do to get it. Maybe Virgil should start praying.

Storm Front is available right now in hardcover and on your electronic device.

Ah, now here’s an interesting thing. The Abominable by Dan Simmons.

imagesIt’s 1924 and the race to summit the world’s highest mountain has been brought to a terrified pause by the shocking disappearance of George Mallory and Sandy Irvine high on the shoulder of Mt. Everest. By the following year, three climbers — a British poet and veteran of the Great War, a young French Chamonix guide, and an idealistic young American — find a way to take their shot at the top. They arrange funding from the grieving Lady Bromley, whose son also disappeared on Mt. Everest in 1924. Young Bromley must be dead, but his mother refuses to believe it and pays the trio to bring him home.

Deep in Tibet and high on Everest, the three climbers — joined by the missing boy’s female cousin — find themselves being pursued through the night by someone . . . or something. This nightmare becomes a matter of life and death at 28,000 feet – but what is pursuing them? And what is the truth behind the 1924 disappearances on Everest? As they fight their way to the top of the world, the friends uncover a secret far more abominable than any mythical creature could ever be.

Does that sound like a crime-novel to you? Possibly not, but if it’s as good as his metaphysical creature feature The Terror – soon to be made into a major motion something – which had a similarly toxic combination of snow and stiff-upper lips, then you’re in for a treat. And, hey, it’s my blog. If you require genre purity then you should go somewhere where they take these kind of things more seriously. But be warned, Mr. Simmons doesn’t write short novels, so you may have to go out and buy a bigger handbag.

The Abominable is available in hardcover and kindle and, I’m guessing, a kind of thick, white pelt.

Unknown-1Fire And Brimstone is the latest novel by Colin Bateman. Sorry, it’s just Bateman, these days, right? Bateman. Anyway, he’s got a new Dave Starkey novel out, all you Coli– all you Bateman fans.

Here’s the blurb:

When Alison Wolff, the daughter of a billionaire media mogul, disappears following a massacre at a party, nobody knows if she has been kidnapped or killed.

Dan Starkey is hired to find the missing student but he soon discovers that Belfast’s underworld has changed since his days as a journalist. Old tribal conflicts have been superseded by drugs and greed, defended with a ruthlessness undreamt of even in the worst days of The Troubles.

In response to the drug wars, a new church movement has sprung up and when they are blamed for the firebombing of the controversial new abortion clinic, Dan is asked to prove their involvement.

In a Belfast rapidly descending back into chaos, Dan finds himself caught in the violent struggle between rival gangs, one of which claims to have God on their side…

It’s in hardcover for all you Coli– er, Bateman fans. Now I’m inspired to do away with my own first name.

You’ll find Fire And Brimstone is available in hardcover at the mo.

Unknown-2And, finally, here’s the blurb for the Edge of Normal.

Reeve LeClaire was abducted when she was twelve years old and held in captivity for four years. Now, in her twenties, she has a fragile stability but with the help of her psychiatrist, she has started to build a life of independence. But she will never shake off the terror and memory of the monster she believes is behind bars. When Tilly Cavanaugh is rescued from a basement having suffered a similar experience, her parents call Reeve to ask for her help in helping their daughter rediscover a ‘normal’ life. But it is only when two other girls go missing that the police confirm the link and that there is a serial abductor in their midst. Reeve knows that she alone has the knowledge which will help to find the perpetrator – but can she overcome her demons to discover the truth?

Norton is also a True Crime author and her first work of fiction is inspired by her first True Crime book. She also, she says, writes really bad poetry. She’s not the only one.

That’s it for this week. I’m off to rebrand myself simply as… Fella.


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