NEW  BOOKS FOR SPRING 1997

Catherine Arnold --- Imperfect Justice --- Hodder & Stoughton (0 340 66015 5) 16.99
When alleged Mafia underboss Angelo Uccello singles out Karen Perry-Mondori, partner in Florida'a largest law firm, to defend him against charges of cocaine trafficking, something compels her to consider taking on the case. Against the advice of her law partners, her husband and even her estranged mother, she decides to investigate Uccello’s assertions that he has been. set up by the FBI
As Karen gets to know Uccello, strange events begin to take place in both her professional and her private life:   an embittered colleague jeopardises Karen's professional standing; and she is greeted at home one evening by a horrifying surprise.
Initially devastated by this, she nevertheless manages to maintain her hold over the case.  With the support of her brother, Senator Robert Jameson, who has like his mother crawled out of the  woodwork after many years,  Karen examines all the evidence and eventually stumbles across far more than she ever bargained for. Catherine Arnold was born in Brooklyn, New York, and earned degrees in both pharmacy and law at St John's University. She now practises general law and consults in pharmacy malpractice suits.  Imperfect Justice is her second novel.  Catherine Arnold lives in Florida, USA.


Brian Battison --- Poetic Justice --- Constable (0 09 476780 7) 15.99
Chief Inspector Jim Ashworth and Detective Sergeant Holly Bedford are confronted with a race against time when a ruthless extortionist starts targeting the Save U Supermarket in Bridgetown. The evidence all seems to point towards one person, but arresting her is going to be extremely difficult.
Then the extortionists widen their threat, and the beautiful Holly Bedford finds herself in terrible danger........


John Burdett--- The Last Six Million Seconds --- Hodder & Stoughton (0 340 67241 2) 16.99  See Review
Spring 1997. Less than three months until Hong Kong is handed back to the Chinese.
After a tip-off, Detective Chief Inspector Chan dredges up a plastic bag in the sea near the Chinese mainland. Inside: three unidentifiable, decapitated heads. One female, caucasian; two male, oriental.
In his quest to solve the mystery, Chan takes us on an intense, frightening journey through the spectrum of contemporary Hong Kong society. And all the time, the clock is ticking, for he has only six million seconds to complete his investigation.
Fom th author of the highly acclaimed A Personal History of Thirst


Emma Cave --- The Lair--- Hodder & Stoughton (340 63251 8) 16.99 Out January 2nd  See Review 
Two, the number of ill omen; Rupert Deyntree remarks to Disa Trapani at their first strange encounter. And when he accompanies Disa to her Private Greek island, a threatening bond will be forged between them.
Back in England, Rupert's fiancee Lucy Riven has now borne his child. Despite his long, inexplicable disappearance, she still loves and believes in him... unlike his three ex-wives.
Meanwhile Lucy's best friend and her lover hold the secret means to control Rupert. But is any possession wholly safe when powerful forces of evil unite to obtain it?
Like Emma Cave's previous novel, Bluebeard's Room, The Lair is a compulsive brew which will have readers on the edge of their seats.


J.D. Christilian -- Scarlet Women --- Coronet Pbk (0 340 68188 8) 5.99 Out 16th January
Set in the 1870s in a magnificently evoked New York City - a brawling, dangerous melting-pot of wealth and destitution - Scarlet Women introduces a pioneering private investigator as fascinating and ruthless as the city he knows so well.
Alice Curry was a fallen woman who died sordidly in a dockside warehouse. Mrs Vance Barclay Walburton is the wife of one of New York's richest men, leading a life of privilege and pampered luxury. Yet Alice Curry was wearing Mrs Walburton's clothing on the day she died. And Mrs Walburton, supposedly on an extended tour of Europe, has disappeared.
Hired to trace the connection between the two women - and to surpress any hint of scandal that might taint the Walburton family - New York enquiy agent Harp begins to uncover disturbing links between the harlot and the runaway wife. His search for the truth about Olivia Walburton and Alice Curry takes him from the upper echelons of Manhattan to its most sordid depths. Harp's discoveries will expose political and financial corruption - and lead to violence and death.


Trunk MusicMichael  Connelly --- Trunk Music --- Orion (0 75280 700 5) 16.99 Out January 13th  See Review 1 & 2 
Back on the job after an involuntary leave of absence, Harry Bosch lands his first case: a Hollywood producer found in the trunk of a Rolls Royce, shot twice in the head - what looks like "Trunk Music", a Mafia hit. The LAPD's organised crime unit is curiously uninterested, so Harry follows the money trail to Las Vegas where he rekindles an old romance - and begins to uncover a web of corruption. And then, suddenly, he gets yanked off the case - and things begin to spin out of control. But only a bullet can stop Harry when he's searching for the truth.


Thomas H Cook --- The Chatham School Affair --- Corgi Pbk Original (0 552 14518 1) 5.99 Out January 9th
On a summer morning in 1926, a young woman alights from a bus in a Cape Cod village and embarks on an odyssey she cannot foretell. The new art teacher at Chatham School has come from an exotic and liberated world, a world barely imaginable to the inhabitants of this small town. She moves into a cottage beside Black Pond. From that moment, the ripples she creates there move outwards with an increasing ferocity until they create a terrifying storm of lust, anger and, ultimately, death.............
Seven decades later, the bodies are buried, the notorious headlines are dust, proud Chatham School little but a memory. Only one living soul knows the answer to the questions that tore the soul from the town. Only now can he summon the courage to piece together the jagged fragments of a once tranquil world..........


The Course of HonourLindsey Davis --- The Course of Honour --- Century 15.99 (0 7126 7724 0)
This is the love story of the Emperor Vespasian and his mistress, Antonia Caenis. Ancient Rome's most turbulent period - the reigns of Tiberius, Caligula, Claudius, Nero, and the Year of the Four Emperors - is encapsulated in this novel which tells the sweeping story of the ascendancy of the Emperor Vespasian, the impecunious son of a provincial senator who finally brought peace to Rome after years of strife. The story is seen through the eyes of Caenis, a woman slave working as a secretary for Antonia, Claudius' mother. She is a small footnote in the accounts of Roman historians, but here she is beautifully realised as the woman who exerted the greatest influence on the future Emperor.
As their strange and forbidden romance blossoms, Caenis finds herself involved in the discovery of Sejanus' plot against Tiberius, while Vespasian takes his first steps towards what she believes will be a glorious career. Years pass, yet they survive both prejudice and violent political events. Then Vespasian occupies a central role in the climactic struggle for power - bringing hope for Rome, but only despair for the woman who has loved him for so long.
"With the passing of Ellis Peters, the title Queen of the Historical Whodunnit is temporarily vacant. Lindsey Davis is well suited to assume it - asnd she is funnier than Peters... Davis' books make old Rome sound fun... it is so enjoyable" The Times
Lindsey Davis was born in Birmingham but now lives in Greenwich. After an English degree at Oxford she joined the Civil Service but now writes full time. A Dying Light in Corduba was chosen as Val McDermid's Best History Mystery for 1996.


The Bone CollectorJeffrey Deaver --- The Bone Collector --- Hodder & Stoughton (0 340 65374 4) 16.99 Out 6th February See Reviews 1 & 2 
Lincoln Rhyme was one of the world's foremost forensic criminalists, until a crime scene accident paralysed his spine. Quadriplegic, able to move only his head and shoulders and one finger, Lincoln Rhyme is bitter, his great mind trapped in his useless body. Rhyme is actually planning his suicide when he gets a call he; can’t ignore from his old partner on the force. A body has been found in a grave beside the railway in New York, and the dead man’ s colleague is still missing. The Bone Collector is a serial kidnapper, a very clever killer, and a man who dwells in the past. Rhyme has only a matter of hours to find the deliberate and obscure traces the murderer has left in order to find the Bone Collector’s next victim...
Spurred from his lethargy of spirits to accept the challenge, Rhyme chooses inexperienced female police officer Amelia Sachs to act as his arms and legs to walk the crime scenes. Rhyme can only whisper in her ear and let her do the work he spent a lifetime with.
As the minutes count down, Rhyme and Sachs and their team race to decipher the Bone Collector’s clues, but the killer has his own plans - and who the ultimate victim will be only he knows.
Deaver’s stunning new, novel combines the suspense and forensic savvy of Patricia Cornwell with the rich historical dimension of The Alienist, together with the staggering twists and turns of plot that are his own hallmark. No one will be able to put The Bone Collector down
Jeffery Deaver is author of several bestselling suspense novels. He has twice been nominated for the prestigious Edgar Award in the USA. Huge sales of his previous book, A Maiden's Grave, confirmed Deaver as a top-ranking author in the USA and his new novel The Bone Collector has already been snapped up by Universal Pictures for major international cinema release. A former lawyer, now a full-time writer, Jeffery Deaver divides his time between Virginia and New York City.


Michael Dobbs--- Goodfellowe MP -- HarperCollins (0 00 2324280 X) Out January 23rd See Review 
In a world of cynicism and sleaze comes a new political hero the country has been crying out for - Thomas Goodfellowe MP, a backbench politician who is far from humble or ordinary. A parliamentary detective. A man who has discovered the extraordinary powers of a backbencher to ask questions of anyone about anything - and the freedom to make an almighty public fuss.
It is a dangerous game for a man with his own share of problems: chaotic finances; a troublesome teenage daughter; and the oppostion of some of the most powerful people in the Establishment - particularly the country's most prominent press baron, who has sworn to destroy Goodfellowe before the parliamentarian's investigations destroy him.
Goodfellowe has the inquiring mind of a parliamentary Morse coupled with the ruthlessness in the pursuit of justice of a backbench Urquhart - a truly unique character developed in the hands of the country's leading political thriller writer.


John Gilstrap --- Nathan's Run -- Warner Pbk (0 7515 1803 4) 5.99 Out January 16th See ReviewChosen as Best Thriller of 1996 by Val McDermid
A high security Virginia juvenile detention centre is the scene of a savage killing. Twelve-year-old Nathan Bailey is accused of murder and branded a cop-killer; orphaned, alone and with nowhere to turn for help, he becomes a target of a nationwide manhunt.
"A first novel of the same relentless pace as John Grisham's early work" Scotland on Sunday
"Exemplary...Compelling...A taut piece of storytelling" Mail on Sunday


Lisa Howell --- A Job to Die For --- Hodder & Stoughton (0 340 61700 4) 16.99
Kate Wilkinson is back in a story of ruthlessness, greed, and sudden death, set against the background of a new television channel - a world that her creator, the Director of Programmes for the cable channel UK Living, knows extremely well.


Richard Hunt --- The Man Trap --- Constable (0 09 476840 4) 15.99
Detective Chief Inspector Sidney Walsh and his Cambridgeshire Constabulary CID team are summoned to the scene when a man's body is found in a bunker on the Hasling Abbey golf course. Nothing, however, proves straightforward. What on earth had Hitler, a long dead hermit Catholic priest and two National Front thugs got to do with the killing? What was the murdered man's beautiful modeel wife up to on the night he died? Was the story of a haunting ghost and an ancient family feud relevant? Sidney Walsh and his team have to go through a traumatic baptism of fire, violence and fear before the case can be finally resolved.


Out Of The BlueStephen Knight --- Out Of The Blue --- Viking (0 670 85711 4) See Review 
How does it feel to get 25 million out of the blue?
'Think of it like winning the National Lottery, except we didn't even fork out for a ticket...'
Matthew King, living on a mysterious legacy from his mother, Who lives in apparent poverty on the Greek island of Skiathos, has found out that it's murder.
When Matthew's daughter is shot dead, he alone knows that the money and the murder are connected. Against accusations of cocaine-induced paranoia, he embarks on a private odyssey into a dark world of political intrigue and sexual corruption. His only ally is a Greek detective who plays everything by the book, his only weapon is hard cash. Matthew’s wealth has cost him everything, and now he wants what money can't buy - revenge.
Out Of The Blue is an unstoppable thriller in which cash is a curse, love is a burden, and where family skeletons have a nasty habit of coming back to life. And the final twist in Matthew’s epic journey will take your breath away.
Steven Knight has a flourishing television career as both writer and director. He has devised several game shows, including Talking Telephone Numbers, and written for Ken Dodd, Jim Davidson, Terry Wogan, Chris Tarrant, Philip Schofield, Jonathan Ross and Jasper Carrot. He has written two previous novels, The Movie House and Alphabet City and lives in North London.


James Morton --- A Calender of Killing -- Little Brown 16.99 Out January 16
A True life killing for everyday of the year. A unique record of crime in the twentieth century: a killing for every day of the year. The earliest is the shooting of a Yorkshire policman in 1900, the most recent the suffocation of a middle-aged accountant in early 1996; the 336 entries in James Morton's diary of death remorslessly charts the modern history of one of man's most primitive and powerful instincts.


Richard Stark --- The Parker Omnibus Vol.1 Allison & Busby See Review 
Parker is:
"A sturdy, long-lived crook who specializes in planning and violence....He is not cruel, just impersonal, and doesn't do things without a reason" The Times Literary Supplement
"A true existential, Parker isn t somebody we can approve of- he's predictably violent, mistrustful of women...(He) conducts his business between the twin worlds of organized crime and disorganized society" City Limits
"A cult figure in the States...He is some mean machine, and you will love him" The Scotsman
"The ruthless, unrepentant, single-minded operator...Nobody tops Stark in his objective portrayal of a world of total amorality" New York Times
The Man with the Getaway Face
Parker has cheated the Outfit. He must act to protect his new identity. When the bandages came off, he looked in the mirror at a stranger. Only the eyes were familiar - flawed onyx, cold and hard.
The Outfit 
The Outfit is after Parker following his neat robbery in The Man with the Getaway Face. He thought he was clear but an attempt on his life means he is a marked man. The only way to beat them is to take the fight into the enemy camp, rather that to live each day in fear...
Deadly Edge
Parker leaves his woman, Claire, to hunt those hunting him. A twisted and brutal trail leads back to Claire, now a hostage to as evil a pair as have ever been imagined...
"The spine-tingling tension never lets up" Manchester Evening News
'The writing is as stripped down as a drag racer and the action as brutal and powerful'" Scotsman
'Nobody tops Stark in his objective portrayal of a world of total amorallty' New York Times


Michael Pearce --- The Fig Tree Murder -- HarperCollins (0 00 232619 1) 14.99 Out January 23rd  See Review 
Why was the body put on the line? Chance? Or did someone want to halt the progress of the new electric railway out fom Cairo to the City of Pleasure being built in the suburbs?
Was it another of Egypt's traditional revenge killings? Or had the murdered man somehow got caught up in the manoeuvrings of the sinister power groups jostling for position around the new railway?
In this, the tenth novel in Michael Pearce's award-winning series, Old Egypt is pitted against New and in the middle is the Mamur Zapt. To answer these questions he has to look both in the luxurious quarters of the dazzling New Heliopolis and in the more humble houses of the dead man's village, and in neither place are things as straightforward as they seem......


Andrew Taylor --- The Four Last Things -- HarperCollins (0 00 232557 8) 15.99 Out January 23rd See Review 1 & 2 
First novel in the Roth Trilogy, a gothic psychodrama set against the changing face of the Church of England.
Little Lucy Appleyard is snatched from her child minder's on a cold winter afternoon, and the nightmare begins. When Eddie takes her home to beautiful, child-loving Angel, he knows he's done the right thing. But Lucy's not like their other visitors...........
To the outside world Lucy has disappeared into a black hole with no clues to her whereabouts... until the first grisly discovery in a London graveyard. More such finds are to follow, all at religious sites, and, in a city haunted by religion what do these offerings signify?
All that stands now between Lucy and the final sacrifice are a CID sereant on the verge of disgrace and a woman cleric but how can they hope to halt the evil forces that are gathering around their innocent daughter?
Andrew Taylor --- The Barred Window -- HarperCollins Pbk (0 00 647213 3) 5.99 Out January 20th See Review 
Thomas Penmarsh has always lived at Finisterre, the house by the sea,. He sleeps in the room with the barred window and looks down on the cats in the garden. He is forty-eight, but he has been an old man since one evening in 1967 when he lost everything he valued.
Then Cousin Esmond cane back and rescued him from despair and the cats. Esmond always looked after Thomas.
But now Alice wants to come home too.
Alice will spoil it all if she returns, because she brings her past with her. From the moment of her conception, she has been a child of enchantment, madness and death.
"Like Hitchcock, Taylor pitches extreme and gothic events within a hair's breadth of normality." Times Literary Supplement.
"A psychological tingler with more than a touch of the Daphne Du Mauriers....this author knows precisely how to wield suspense." Independant on Sunday.


Robert Wilson--- The Big Killing -- HarperCollins Pbk (0 00 647986 3) 5.99 Out January 20th See Review 
Bruce Medway, go-between and fixer for traders in steamy West Africa, smells trouble when a porn merchant asks him to deliver a video at a secret location. Things look up, though, when he's hired to act as a minder to Ron Collins - a spoilt playboy looking for diamonds - in the Ivory Coast. Medway thinks this could be the answer to his cashflow crisis, but when the video delivery leads to a shootout and the discovery of a mutilated body, the prospect of retreating to his bolthole in Benin becomes increasingly attractive - especially as the manner of the victim's death is too similar to a current notorious political murder for comfort.


Daniel Woodrell --- Give us a Kiss --- No Exit Press (187406164 5) 10 --- Out January 29th See Reviews 1 & 2 
Wild passion, old fashioned feuding, and rich dialogue combineto make GIVE US A KISS one of the most original novels around.
"Woodrell alternates between reaming the language with a dry corncob and practising a particularly skilful kind of literary cabinetwork. Tongue in cheek (and most other orifices) he celebrates blood kin, home country and hot sex in this rich, funky, headshakingly original novel." - E Annie Proulx
"I read Give Us A Kiss and loved it. Woodrell is a marvellous writer" Roddy Doyle
"...a wild story of crime and passion" Pinckney Benedict
I was on the drift from California to someplace that didn't have any bench warrants out on me...
Doylie Redmond is on the drift from a failed marriage and a floundering life, moving east in the Volvo stolen from his soon to be ex wife, heading home to the Ozarks where Redmonds have been farming and fighting since the Civil War.
Daniel Woodrell’s previous novels include the St Bruno trilogy: Under the Bright Lights, Muscle for the Wing, The Ones You Do and the civil war novel, Woe To Live On, set in the border states of Kansas and Missouri; which explores the nature of lawlessness and violence. He grew up in a Mississippi River town and knows the region he writes of intimately.. He lives in a small town in the Ozarks.

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