There’s been a murder interview with Andrew James Greig

1. How did you get started writing?

Just after Christmas 2017, in that limbo state before Hogmanay, I sat at the kitchen table with a Toblerone overdose and started typing a story on my laptop. It was the prologue to One is One, my first ever attempt at a novel, and I have no idea where it came from or why.

2. What drew you to write a novel

I’ve always been an avid reader, and I suspect all readers at one time or other have wondered if they have a book inside them waiting to get out. My gestation period was just longer than most.

3. Which writers past or present have influenced your style of writing?

I can’t really answer that with any degree of authority because my writing just happened spontaneously; there was no period of study, of analysing writing techniques or practicing my craft. I guess my style will be a synthesis of those writers whose magic worked for me – a very mixed bag ranging from Mervyn Peake to Iain Banks, too many to mention.

4. When you first started writing did you find it hard to get publisher interest?

There must be a method to a publisher’s madness, but I don’t know what it is. After I’d written my first novel I sent the obligatory first three chapters and synopsis to publishers and a couple of agents. I had a lot of rejections and enough non-responses to make the rejections highly prized. In the end I self-published and that has been quite instructive. My second novel, Whirligig, was snapped up by Fledgling Press last year. It’s a chicken and egg situation really – I’m just lucky getting an offer.

5. There are many interesting characters in your Novel, do you have a particular favourite one?

I have a soft spot for my DI James Corstophine, and how he flounders in a very human way whilst trying to solve a complex case.

6. What kind of research have you have to undertake for your Novel?

Clocks, lots about clocks and clockwork mechanisms – far more than I needed for the plot. Clocks and neurotoxins. Google probably have a warning flag against my name.

7. Are the characters in your books based on any real life?

The only character who comes close to anyone I know is PC Lamb. His off the cuff comments remind me of some of the things I’ve said. There was a time when I wasn’t allowed anywhere near a microphone, but I think I’m safe now…

8. Do you have a particular favourite scene in the book and why

I tend to write in a highly visual style – running an internal private screening in my mind. I do like the first death, when a pastoral scene albeit with an undercurrent of impending doom reaches a conclusion and sets the story into inevitable and inescapable motion.

9. Do you see any of your characters personality in yourself and vice versa?

As mentioned, PC Lamb and his inappropriate comments. They all sprang fully formed from my mind so I guess in some metaphysical way they must all be inside me somewhere – spooky!

10. If you can, would you give us a sneaky peak into any future novels you might planned.

I’m writing a second Corstophine novel, Jane Eyre meets The Shining featuring Scotland’s wonderful mountains and bothies (that’s not the title). I’m attempting to deal with the difficult subject of mental illness. This short excerpt (which as a first draft may not even make the book) gives the first insight into Phoebe’s backstory:

Someone else was in the mirror, staring at her ­– always watching her. She’d look away then slowly slide her eyes back towards the glass. Whoever she was, Phoebe caught her slyly watching, waiting for the moment. Sinister told her to break the glass, use the shards to stab and tear and wound. Righteous told her it was just her reflection. Fist broke glass. Cut hands left red trails. The wolf had fangs.

She’d been left alone in her hospital room, door locked from outside. With nobody to attack, Sinister told her to cut and slash her own flesh. Light fought dark; darkness won. Her arm and stomach were tattered threads of hanging flesh by the time they reached her. White uniforms stained with her blood.

When she returned from intensive care the mirror had gone and her flesh bore cuneiform scripts, death white against her olive skin. It was a message, one only she would be able to understand – with help from her voices.

11. If you had the opportunity to write a novel with any writer alive or dead, who would it be and why

What a great question! I’d love the opportunity to write a Culture novel with Iain M Banks. Iain created an entire universe in his Science Fiction and was such an inspiration before being taken far too early. His humanity shone through everything he touched.

12. Do you have words of advice you can share with anyone who is intrested in writing a novel

Absolutely – just do it. Don’t worry whether people will like it or not; the journey is in many ways more important than the destination. If a publisher doesn’t want your offering just remember you’re in good company.

Just outside a sleepy Highland town, a gamekeeper is found hanging lifeless from a tree. The local police investigate an apparent suicide, only to find he’s been snared as efficiently as the rabbit suspended beside him. As the body count rises, the desperate hunt is on to find the murderer before any more people die. But the town doesn’t give up its secrets easily, and who makes the intricate clockwork mechanisms carved from bone and wood found at each crime?

Whirligig is a tartan noir like no other; an exposé of the corruption pervading a small Highland community and the damage this inflicts on society’s most vulnerable. What happens when those placed in positions of trust look the other way; when those charged with our protection are inadequate to the challenge; when the only justice is that served by those who have been sinned against?

This debut crime novel introduces DI James Corstophine – a man still grieving for a wife lost to cancer; his small close-knit team of passed-over police and their quiet Highland town. He’s up against a killer who plays him as easily as a child. For a man whose been treading water since the death of his wife, he’s facing a metaphorical flood of biblical proportions as he struggles to understand why these murders are happening, and who is behind each carefully planned execution. All the time, the clock is ticking.

100 Favourite Ceilidh Dances

One is One

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Gordon Bickerstaff Die Every Day Blog Tour

A woman is murdered in a Glasgow city hotel room. Police have everything they need to charge a suspect. Caught at the scene, he confessed, and he’s filled with guilt and remorse. With undeniable evidence; the police expect him to plead guilty.

Rumours suggest the man will plead not guilty and tell his story. If he faces trial, the truth will cause international outrage and the government will fall.
Faceless mandarins in corridors of power are determined he will remain silent.

Lambeth Group agent, Zoe Tampsin, is ordered to make him plead guilty. What she discovers will crush her soul and place her next in line to be murdered.
Who is pulling the strings? What secrets are they hiding?  

How did you get started writing? 

My Dad read Ian Fleming’s books so a combination of reading his books and the movies got me hooked into thrillers and world-changing threats led by megalomaniacs. Over the years, countless times, I’ve read a book and thought, I would have had this happen, I wouldn’t have done it that way. I would have ended it that way. I love a book to a have a good ending so I always have a satisfactory ending. In my books, women are not eye-candy; they are smart and determined main protagonists like Zoe Tampsin who win the day by using their brains to outwit the enemy.

What drew you to write a novel?  

When I was a student in 1973, I attended a seminar given by Tim Dinsdale in which he showed the Rines-Egerton picture as proof of the Loch Ness Monster. After the seminar, I joined my pals for a few drinks and we agreed that although the picture looked good, it was all a load of nonsense. 

Then for months afterwards, I began to wonder what the Americans were really searching for in Loch Ness. Not the monster – that’s a hoax, so it had to be something else, and from that idea I developed the over-arching story for the first three books. Add in another unresolved mystery – why did Rudolf Hess fly single-handed to Scotland during WW2, and I had the foundation of a cracking story.

Which writers past or present have influenced your style of writing? 

I like thrillers. I’ve read a lot of Lee Child, Tess Gerittsen, Patricia Cornwell, David Baldacci and James Patterson. 


When you first started writing did you find it hard to get publisher interest? 

I had publisher interest early on but it came down to a simple decision. Give up my job as a university lecturer with mortgage, wife and two small children to become a full-time author. I chose the former but often wonder what would have happened if I’d chose the latter.


There are many interesting characters in your novel, do you have a favourite one?

My favourite because I love writing about her is Zoe Tampsin. She is ex-army, Special Forces with a finely tuned skill set for undercover operations. Her nickname is DP (which are the initials of Diana Prince, aka Wonder Woman). Zoe is the strong female lead who is empowered with the skills and cunning to get the job done. Her boss wrote about her, ‘Zoe Tampsin protects her troop like a lioness protecting her cubs, powerful, determined and completely ruthless.’ When I write about Zoe, I think about Samantha Caine (played by Geena Davis) in the brilliant movie The Long Kiss Goodnight. Readers have likened her to Lisbeth Salander (Stieg Larsson books).

What kind of research have you had to undertake for your novel? 

I trained as a researcher, so I love doing research to give my stories substance. I have no experience of weapons and Special Forces operations, so I have to do the research. I don’t do it before I write, I do the research as and when required e.g. in Die Every Day, one of the characters is heavily involved in drug distribution via county lines, so I did a lot of research on what it was like for a young person to be trapped in that business.

Are the characters in your books based on any real life? 

Every character has elements in them of people I know or have known from family, friends and former work colleagues. But taken to extreme with names changed to protect the innocent.

Do you see any of your character’s personality traits in yourself and vice versa?

There are elements of actual me, who I would like to be, who I think I should be, who I will never be, who I’d be if I were female, and who I might be in another dimension or parallel world. I have been asked if character Gavin Shawlens is me? We share many things in common but he is most definitely not me!

If you can, would you give us a sneak peek into any future novels you might have.

Interesting question. Die Every Day was recently reviewed by KJ Simmill She has read between the lines because her final comment is telling; ‘Action, secrets, loyalty, desperation, and betrayal will keep you on the edge of your seat as things go from bad to worse with seemingly no reprieve. I honestly can’t wait to get my hands on the next book when it comes out, if there is one.’ Is it time to start a new story? Time will tell.


If you had the opportunity to write a novel with any crime writer alive or dead, who would it be and why? 

Ian Fleming. We both like to put out main protagonists in seemingly impossible situations and then have to come up with ever more imaginative ways to get them out. I love the challenge and I think he would. I could put them in the situation and he could get them out!

Do you have words of advice you can share with anyone who is interested in writing a novel? 

Keep a small notebook and pen with you at all times. Ideas come into the mind at odd times. Once, I was in a theatre enjoying the show when an idea for a new scene I’d been working on earlier in the day suddenly dropped into my mind. For the rest of the evening, I had to keep bringing the idea to the front of my mind to keep it there. With a notebook and pen, I could have scribbled down the detail during the interval and then enjoyed the rest of the show. Lesson learned. 

Stephen King said, Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life, as well’. I write to enrich my life, and hopefully add a little to others who read my books.

Die Every Day Amazon Link

Amazon Author Page


Twitter: @GFBickerstaff



Tana Collins Dark is the Day Blog Tour


Dark is the Day blurb

DI Jim Carruthers has to put his personal feelings for newly- appointed DCI Sandra McTavish aside when a young student is brutally attacked and left for dead.


Meanwhile, when a university lecturer is stalked by one of her own students, Carruthers is horrified to discover that the academic is none other than his ex-wife, Mairi.


Are the attacker and stalker one and the same, and if so, will Carruthers’ ex-wife be next?


When a second then a third victim is found, not only dead but mutilated, Carruthers and his team are tasked with searching for a murderer. A murderer who takes great pleasure from killing.


What is the victims’ connection to a cult in North America, which seems to be getting a stranglehold in a Scottish university? Why have these women been targeted? And who is doing the killing?


It looks like there might be a serial killer on the loose in Castletown but can DI Jim Carruthers stop this depraved murderer before they strike again?


The inspiration behind ‘Dark is the Day’, Book 4 in the Jim Carruthers series

Thirty years ago I met a young man called ‘Graham’. ‘Graham’ isn’t his real name. Thankfully for me he wasn’t a serial killer but he was many other things. While he was attractive, intelligent and eloquent he was also a deeply disturbed individual who was both manipulative and cruel.


It has taken me nearly 30 years to be able to tell this story, the seeds of which lie in some particularly unpleasant true events; some of which occurred while I was at university. This story is about many things: vulnerability; weakness; cruelty; obsession and love.


How vulnerable young people can be when they go off to college for the first time; how weakness and love can be seized upon by the cruel and obsessive; how a troubled past can drive a person to seek the security of a dangerous cult, although to this day it is still debated whether Objectivism, the movement started by Ayn Rand, is indeed a cult. As I said at the start ‘Graham’ wasn’t a serial killer. However, having spent time with ‘Graham’, it did get me wondering what it would take to push people like him into being one and how individuals actually do become serial killers – and at its core is the age old question of nature verses nurture.


Many, many years later, to my surprise, I became a crime writer. And this former student of thirty years ago must still be on my mind because ‘Dark is the Day,’ the 4th book in the Inspector Jim Carruthers series, was born and it was inspired, in part, by the ‘Grahams’ of this world.

The Prologue of ‘Dark is the Day’


Tuesday: about 3pm

Hearing footsteps behind her, she clutches her canvas bag tighter to her chest. As she picks up her pace she feels the moisture of sweat on her hands and tastes it on her top lip. A sudden sense of claustrophobia comes over her in this dark, cobbled, medieval alley with its high stone walls. The light barely penetrates here and everything is in shadow. Her heart hammers in her chest. It is almost painful.

Greyfriar’s Wynd is empty except for her and the person behind her. She is wearing red wedge sandals but can still hear the other person’s footfall, measured and deliberate. All her senses are on alert. Why did she take this short cut? She descends three worn steps quickly. She always takes this short cut from the library, that’s why, and nothing has ever happened before. But she’s never been followed before. And with the recent news of that girl being attacked, what is she thinking?

She doesn’t dare turn round. She can’t. She stops abruptly and the footsteps behind her stop. Hairs prick up on the back of her neck. She hears a strange tuneless whistling. She feels a sudden shiver. Panic threatens to overwhelm her. She tries to scream but can’t. She can’t turn back, there’s nowhere to hide, so the only option is to keep going forward. Thank God, she’s not wearing heels, although the wedge sandals are bad enough on cobbles.

A sudden noise behind her. The sound of heavy shoes. Oh my God. The man is running. She starts to run too, cursing as her tight denim skirt impedes her progress. Why does she think it’s a man? He’s getting closer. He’s closing the gap quickly. She can hear his breathing, smell his sweat. She’s a fast runner, but not in this skirt. Another couple of seconds and she knows she’s not going to be able to outrun him. A large hand grabs her shoulder, swings her round. Her shoulder bag slips to the ground, the contents spilling out.

It is then that she sees the mask and the knife.

Tana Collins is now a UK Amazon Top 10 bestselling author of the Inspector Jim Carruthers series set in the picturesque East Neuk of Fife. She was born in Yorkshire but grew up in rural East Sussex where she spent most of her childhood running around in woods creating stories and having adventures. She did a BA at the Polytechnic of North London before moving to Canada to do a Masters in Philosophy and then finally an MPhil at St Andrews. In 1996 she moved to Edinburgh which is where she still lives.

Her debut novel, Robbing the Dead, set in fictional Castletown in Fife, was published on 14th February 2017 and became an Amazon No 1 Bestseller for Scottish Crime Fiction. The follow up in the series, Care to Die, was published 1st June 2017 also to critical acclaim

More Books in the Jim Carruthers Series

1. Robbing the Dead


2. Care to Die


3. Mark of the Devil



Author Amazon Page

Amazon Link for Dark is the Day





Jackie McLean Run Blog Tour



DI Donna Davenport and her team are under pressure.

With the hunt on for the country’s most notorious cop killer and an ongoing complex international investigation, the murder of a local thug during a football match is the last thing the police need.

But as more incidents overload the police, and fear brings vigilante mobs onto the streets, suspicion grows that the mayhem is being orchestrated.

One man can make it stop. With the city heading towards chaos and disaster, Donna prepares to abandon caution and the rules, even if it means she is ostracised by her own team.

Jackie’s influences when writing Run

RUN is part three in the DI Donna Davenport series, which began with TOXIC. I wrote TOXIC mainly because I wanted to write a book set in my home town (Arbroath), but as it progressed, I realised I was going to have to leave it on something of a cliffhanger. By then I already had some of the elements of the second book (SHADOWS) in mind, and knew it wasn’t going to be the right place to resolve that ending. However, I didn’t want things to drag on – I don’t like that myself as a reader – so I decided to write the third book with the sole purpose of bringing it all to a conclusion.

Having said that, I did have one stipulation before I started writing RUN: I wanted the opening murder to take place at Arbroath Football Club. I contacted the Club to check that they’d be okay with that (crime writers often have to make bizarre requests), and I was delighted at their very positive response. In fact, they invited me to attend on a match day, and to bring my notebook with me for a wander around behind the scenes. They even made the suggestion that perhaps my victim could be the referee…

The excerpt here is set in the Ethie Woods, which sit directly across the road from the house I used to live in. One of my household tasks was to walk the dog there, and I often felt there was something creepy about them. I wonder if this comes across in the book?

Excerpt from RUN

The Ethie Woods lay off the east side of the A92, just two miles out of Arbroath heading towards Montrose.  It would normally be pitch dark out here at this time, being well away from the town’s streetlights, and with only a couple of houses tucked away on the other side of the road and set well apart.  There were few signs of activity to give away the existence of the nearby tiny hamlet of Marywell, or of the farms in the surrounding area.

Despite the road being single carriageway, it was the main route for long distance truckers going between Aberdeen and all routes south.  It didn’t take much for the route to become snarled, and by the time Donna and Alice approached, a line of police and other vehicles were snaked along the coned-off northbound road.  Their blue lights, flashing silently, obscured any view there might have been of the night sky.  The thrum of idling emergency vehicles provided a steady soundtrack to the trucks that were following the white-capped traffic cop’s directions, passing north and south, one at a time.

Donna glared at a lorry driver who leaned out of his cabin window to gawp at the scene on the other side, and flicked her head, indicating for him to get a move on.

The traffic cop halted the flow of trucks to let Donna and Alice cross the road to the woods.

PC McClure was standing there, wearing a heavy overcoat and enormous gloves, like goalie gloves.  Donna found herself wondering if he’d nicked them from the McKinnes murder scene, but pushed the thought away again just as quickly.  He was stamping his feet, and breath clouds blew from his mouth.  As soon as he saw Donna and Alice, he used his teeth to remove one of the gloves, and fished his notebook from a pocket to record the fact of their entering the crime scene.  Behind him was the head of a rough track that quickly disappeared from view as it plunged into the darkness of the woods.  To his left and right, yellow police tape trailed across the trees that lined the roadside.

“Follow the crowd, Detective Inspector,” he said, indicating a spot further into the woods, where the vague outlines of human shapes created the illusion of movement amongst the dark, bare trees.

A cloying, sickly sweet smell seemed to cling to the trees as Donna and Alice picked their way along the dirt track, crunching their way through dried leaves and bracken, careful to step over the gnarled roots that veined the way.

On reflex, Donna brought tissues from her pocket and covered her mouth and nose, as she would do at a post mortem.  She noticed Alice doing the same.  The smell, now like burning rubbish, found its way through the tissue, and it was all Donna could do to stop herself from gagging as the noxious air reached for her taste buds.

Just as the stench threatened to overpower, she and Alice found themselves at the backs of a team of blue-clad forensics personnel.  One of them turned round, alerted to the arrival of the two officers.  Donna saw that he recognised her from the murder scene at the football club.  He nodded to her, trying to form a smile, but the grim line his mouth made only served as a warning of the horrific scene she was about to look at.  He allowed her to peer past him and lean in for a look.

“Oh, dear God,” she heard Alice at her shoulder.

Jackie writes crime fiction, and spies on people in real life for ideas and inspiration…

She lives in Glasgow and has a varied background, including being a government economist, a political lobbyist, and running a pet shop in Glasgow’s Southside (ask her anything about pets). She currently works with East Ayrshire Council, where until recently her job involved frequent visits to Kilmarnock Prison.

Toxic is her first crime novel, introducing DI Donna Davenport, and was shortlisted in the Yeovil Literary Prize before publication by ThunderPoint Publishing Ltd.
The sequel, Shadows, was published in October 2017, and
Her third book in the DI Davenport series (Run) was published in October 2019.

Jackie has appeared at crime writing festivals Newcastle Noir, Crime at the Castle and Literally @ Newbattle, and regularly appears at Noir at the Bar events (including Edinburgh, Newcastle, Dundee and Dunfermline). She also forms part of the Dangerous Dames and Murder & Mayhem along with a number of other crime writers, and has appeared at events in libraries and bookstores across Scotland as part of these.

Until recently, Jackie ran the writing group at Waterstones Braehead, and has also run creative writing sessions with the men in Kilmarnock Prison.


More Books in the DI Donna Davenport Series

1. Toxic

2. Shadows





Amazon Author Page:




There’s Been a Murder Interview with Val Penny

Val Penny is an American author living in SW Scotland. She has two adult daughters of whom she is justly proud and lives with her husband and two cats. She has a Law degree from Edinburgh University and her MSc from Napier University. She has had many jobs including hairdresser, waitress, lawyer, banker, azalea farmer and lecturer. However she has not yet achieved either of her childhood dreams of being a ballerina or owning a candy store. Until those dreams come true, she has turned her hand to writing poetry, short stories and novels. Her crime novels, ‘Hunter’s Chase’ Hunter’s Revenge and Hunter’s Force are set in Edinburgh, Scotland, published by Crooked Cat Books. The fourth book in the series, Hunter’s Blood, follows shortly.


1. How did you get started writing?

I have always enjoyed telling stories, reading and writing. However, I started writing my first novel when I was recovering from cancer. I found chemotherapy and radiotherapy debilitating and could not undertake many of the activities I enjoy. I could not travel, as I had to stay close to the hospital treating me. I could not swim due to risk of infection at the pool and I could not go for walks because the fatigue I suffered was extreme. What was left? Watching day-time television, which gets old very fast or reading. I have always read voraciously, and luckily, I was still able to do that. As I became a little better, I started my blog to review the books I read.


2. What drew you to write a novel

Happily my recovery continued. I was still too poorly to do much but felt good enough to get bored. It was then that Handsome Hubby said in exasperation, “If you know so much about what makes a good book, Why don’t you write one!” Thus Hunter’s Chase was born.


3. Which writers past or present have influenced your style of writing?

I write police procedurals and chose to write that genre because it is the type of story I most enjoy reading. Authors writing this type of novel include Ian Rankin, Val McDermott and Mark Billingham. I do think it is important for writers to read widely within and outwith their own genre. I believe everything you read improves style, vocabulary and pace. I have been very lucky to have had support from gifted and successful mentors within the writing industry including Peter Robinson who writes the DCI Banks series; Erin Kelly who write psychological thrillers and Michael Jecks who writes the historical Templar series.


4. When you first started writing did you find it hard to get publisher interest?

I knew very little about the publishing industry before I completed my first novel. The one thing I did know was that there was no point sending my manuscript of a crime novel to publishers or agents who were closed to submissions or only interested in romances, sci-fi or historical novels. So I checked out independent publishers who would accept a manuscript direct from the author, open to submissions and interested in my genre. I also made sure that I followed the guidelines they required. This maximised my chances of the publisher expressing interest.


5. There are many interesting characters in your Novel, do you have a particular favourite one?

I like Hunter; I can trust him. However, I think my favourite character is Jamie Thomson. He is a bad boy with a good heart and is always getting into trouble. I like his cheeky sense of humour too.


6. What kind of research have you have to undertake for your Novel?

The main research I have to do is looking into drug trafficking and how to commit murder. I hope nobody every looks at my internet history!


7. Are the characters in your books based on any real life?

I think everyone is influenced by everybody they meet and each experience they have. So while I may have encountered the some of the types of people who inhabit my novels, each of the characters is fictional and definitely not based on real life.


8. Do you have a particular favourite scene in the book and why.

I have favourite scenes in each book, but in my most recent book, Hunter’s Force, I do like the scenes where Hunter has to fight for his life when he is caught and bundled into a car.


9. Do you see any of your characters personality in yourself and vice versa?

I have heard that each author must struggle to create their characters and ensure each one acts as theywould act and not as the writer themselves would act. I write full biographies for each of my characters to try to ensure that I avoid this trap.


10. If you can, would you give us a sneaky peak into any future novels you might planned.

I have recently finished the fourth novel in The Edinburgh Crime Mystery Series: it will be Hunter’s Blood and centres around mysterious deaths in an Edinburgh Hospital. My website is to be found at


11. If you had the opportunity to write a novel with any writer alive or dead, who would it be and why

I do not think I would like to co-write a novel with anybody! I think I am too possessive about my work. I know that there are very successful writing duos like Nicci French and more recently Ambrose Parry. Both of these are husband and wife teams – however, I do not think I could cope with the restrictions of writing with somebody else, especially Handsome Hubby!


12. Do you have words of advice you can share with anyone who is interested in writing a novel.

Persevere! Writing a novel is a marathon, not a sprint and many people get stuck at around 20-25,000 words. But if you plan your story in advance, know your characters well and just keep writing – you too can write a novel.

Hunter by name – Hunter by nature: DI Hunter Wilson will not rest until Edinburgh is safe.

Detective Inspector Hunter Wilson knows there is a new supply of cocaine flooding his city, and he needs to find the source, but his attention is transferred to murder when a corpse is discovered in the grounds of a golf course.

Shortly after the post-mortem, Hunter witnesses a second murder, but that is not the end of the slaughter. With a young woman’s life also hanging in the balance, the last thing Hunter needs is a new man on his team: Detective Constable Tim Myerscough, the son of his nemesis, the former Chief Constable Sir Peter Myerscough.

Hunter’s perseverance and patience are put to the test time after time in this first novel in The Edinburgh Crime Mysteries series


Hunter by name – Hunter by nature: DI Hunter Wilson will not rest until his friend’s death is avenged.

DI Hunter Wilson is called to the scene of a murder. He is shocked to find the victim is his friend and colleague, George Reinbold.

Who would want to harm the quiet, old man? Why was a book worth £23,000 delivered to him that morning? Why is the security in George’s home so intense?

Hunter must investigate his friend’s past as well as the present to identify George’s killer.

When a new supply of cocaine from Peru floods HMP Edinburgh and the city, the courier leads Hunter to a criminal gang, but Hunter requires the help of his nemesis, the former Chief Constable, Sir Peter Myerscough, and local gangster, Ian Thomson, to make his case.

Hunter’s perseverance and patience are put to the test time after time in this taut crime thriller.

Hunter’s Revenge is the second in Val Penny’s gripping crime series featuring DI Hunter Wilson.

Hunter by name – Hunter by nature.

Can DI Hunter Wilson keep Edinburgh safe when he is the hunted?

Detective Inspector Hunter Wilson is woken in the early hours of the morning by a call from his son. Cameron’s flatmate was murdered. Why would anybody want to kill a young woman recently arrived in the city?

Hunter must call in the new Major Incident Team (MIT) to lead the investigation due to the reorganisation of police services. Hunter’s ability to be involved, however, is put in severe doubt when someone from his past decides to take revenge on him. He goes missing, and his team have no idea where to look for him. Who would want to stop Hunter in his tracks?

Meanwhile, Hunter’s team must work closely with the MIT, with or without him, to solve the murder in this taut crime thriller.


Author contact details


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Amazon Author Page



Bloody Scotland Blog Tour 2019 – Broken Ground by Val McDermid

Val McDermid is a number one bestseller whose novels have been translated into more than thirty languages, and have sold over sixteen million copies. She has won many awards internationally, including the CWA Gold Dagger for best crime novel of the year and the LA Times Book of the Year Award. She was inducted into the ITV3 Crime Thriller Awards Hall of Fame in 2009, was the recipient of the CWA Cartier Diamond Dagger in 2010 and received the Lambda Literary Foundation Pioneer Award in 2011. In 2016, Val received the Outstanding Contribution to Crime Fiction Award at the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival and in 2017 received the DIVA Literary Prize for Crime, and was elected a Fellow of both the Royal Society of Literature and the Royal Society of Edinburgh. Val has served as a judge for the Women’s Prize for Fiction and the Man Booker Prize, and was Chair of the Wellcome Book Prize in 2017. She is the recipient of six honorary doctorates and is an Honorary Fellow of St Hilda’s College, Oxford. She writes full-time and divides her time between Edinburgh and East Neuk of Fife.

Reviews for Broken Ground

There is nothing more gratifying than watching a master craftswoman at work, and she is on fine form here’ – The Observer

‘Another stellar read from McDermid, and further evidence that her “Queen of Crime” status will not be challenged’ – The Scotsman

‘The masterly handling of the pace and plot, blended with brilliant characterisation, show why best-selling writer Val McDermid retains her title of new Queen of Crime’ – People

‘McDermid’s deceptively languid style, sly black humour and metronomic sense of pacing delivers a compulsively readable tale’ – The Irish Times

‘Her trademark combination of macabre suspense and a light touch keep you reading gratefully’ – The Sunday Express

Somebody has been here before us. And he’s still here . . .’

When a body is discovered in the remote depths of the Highlands, DCI Karen Pirie finds herself in the right place at the right time. Unearthed with someone’s long-buried inheritance, the victim seems to belong to the distant past – until new evidence suggests otherwise, and Karen is called in to unravel a case where nothing is as it seems.

It’s not long before an overheard conversation draws Karen into the heart of a different case, however – a shocking crime she thought she’d already prevented. As she inches closer to the twisted truths at the centre of these murders, it becomes clear that she’s dealing with a version of justice terrifyingly different to her own . . .

Excerpt from Broken Ground (Little Brown) By Val McDermid

Dr River Wilde had clicked on her last PowerPoint

slide when she felt her phone vibrate against her hip.

Whoever it was would have to wait until she’d finished

running through the week’s reading list for her secondyear

forensic anthropology students. The undergraduates

could find the details of the required texts at the end of

her online lecture notes, but River always liked to end

the lecture with a quick run- through. That way nobody

could claim they didn’t know what they were supposed

to have covered before their next session in the dissection



She zipped through the list at top speed then gathered

her scant notes and turned her back on the exiting

students to check her phone. As she suspected, the

missed call was from a withheld number. But there was

a voicemail. River would have put money on it being

from a police officer. Colleagues would know she was

lecturing; friends rang in the evenings when she was less

likely to be up to her elbows in cadavers; and because her

partner was a senior cop, they generally texted first to

arrange their calls.


Aware that a handful of students were still hanging

around near the podium, River tucked her phone back

into the pocket of her jeans and faced them. ‘Was there

something?’ she asked. Polite, but brisk enough to discourage

the trivial questions that one or two students

seemed impelled to put to her at the end of every lecture.


She fielded a couple of inquiries about dates by which

assessments were due, refraining from pointing out that

they were easily discoverable on the course website,

then disengaged, taking the stairs at a jog. When the

police called her, it was always a matter of life and death.

Literally, not metaphorically. For a forensic anthropologist

like River, the death was invariably in the past, the

life something to be teased from what the corruption of

the expedient grave had left behind. So while she didn’t

like to keep the police waiting, she’d never felt the need

for the performance of urgency and self- aggrandisement

that she’d witnessed in some of her colleagues. You didn’t

serve the dead by being self- serving.


The nearest private space was the mortuary. River used

her keycard to enter the secure corridor then turned into

the cool space where the cadavers were prepared for dissection.

Visitors were always surprised when they walked

through the doors. They expected to see bodies on slabs

being pumped with embalming fluids. But here there

was nothing visible to show that this was a place where

bodies were stored. The main part of the room was occupied

by large stainless steel tanks. Each was about the

size of an American- style fridge freezer lying on its back,

and the tanks were stacked two deep. Each had a serial

number slotted into a holder. It could have been some

arcane industrial food processing plant – a hydroponic

system, or a vessel for growing mycoprotein. The reality

was at once more extraordinary and more mundane.

Each tank held a preservative solution and a body. Over

a period of months, the bodies would effectively be cured

by the salts in the solution. By the end, they would still

be soft and flexible so that student anthropologists, dentists

and surgeons could learn their trade on something

that closely approximated a live body. River’s technicians

had even worked out how to simulate blood flow in the

cadavers. In her dissecting room, when a trainee surgeon

nicked a blood vessel, there was no hiding place.

That afternoon, there was nothing visible to even hint

at what went on there. River leaned against the nearest

tank and pulled out her phone, summoning her voicemail.

A man’s voice spoke clearly and decisively. ‘Dr

Wilde? This is Inspector Walter Wilson from N Division,

based at Ullapool. We’ve got a matter we need to consult

you on. I’d appreciate it if you could call me back as soon

as you get this. Thank you.’ He finished with a mobile

phone number. River scrambled in her lecture folder for

a pen and played the message again so she could catch

the number.


‘A matter’ meant human remains. Not a warm body,

never that. Those were for the pathologists. When they

called for River, it was because they needed someone

who could find answers in teeth and bones, hair and

nails. Unpicking a life – and often a death – from what

was left was her stock in trade. The university website

cut straight to the heart of it: Forensic Anthropology

is best described as the analysis of human remains for the

medicolegal purposes of establishing identity, investigating

suspicious deaths and identifying victims of mass disasters. It

is a specialised area of forensic science that requires detailed

anatomical and osteological training. Being able to assign

a name to the deceased is critical to the successful outcome

of all legal investigations. The squeamish thought there

was something creepy about her work. Not River.


Bringing the dead home. That was how she thought

of her trade.

River tapped in Inspector Walter Wilson’s number. He

answered on the second ring. ‘This is Dr River Wilde,’ she

said. All these years in the job and still, every time she

spoke to a cop for the first time, she inwardly cursed her

hippie parents. ‘You left a message for me.’

‘Thanks for getting back to me, Doc.’ His voice was

deep and gravelly, the Aberdeen accent still clear in

spite of having had the corners knocked off by time and

seniority. ‘We’ve got a body we need your input on.

It turned up in a peat bog in Wester Ross earlier this

afternoon. Based on the information we’ve got from the

witnesses, we think it likely dates back to 1944.’

‘And you want me to confirm that?’

‘Ideally, aye. We could use your help in trying for an

ID as well.’

‘When would you like me on site?’

‘Well, we’ve got it taped and tented, so it’s reasonably

protected. If you could get here for tomorrow morning,

that would be good.’

‘Where exactly are you?’

‘A wee place called Clashstronach. It’s about an hour

north of Ullapool, just this side of the boundary with


River thought for a moment. It was a long drive, but

she could set off within a couple of hours. She was due

to take a class in the dissection room in the morning but

one of her post- docs could handle it. Cecile had specialised

in the spinal work they’d be doing; she’d enjoy the

opportunity to strut her stuff. ‘Can you book me a hotel

room for tonight?’

‘No bother,’ Wilson said. ‘I’ll get you something sorted

in Ullapool, that’s handy for our office and there’s a

couple of decent places to stay. I’ll send you a text, will I?’

Two hours later, she was on the road. Four hours should

do it, she reckoned. Dundee to Perth, then there would be

clots of traffic as she left the city and struck out up the A9,

with its average speed cameras and long stretches where

overtaking was damn near impossible. But this wasn’t

summer, and there would be few tourists and no caravans

so once she’d passed Pitlochry it would be an easy run to

Inverness, then a final hour or so with added twists and

turns as the road snaked across the Highlands to the west

coast. She plugged her phone into the car’s sound system

and let rip with her driving music, an eclectic mix that

spanned the past thirty years of female rockers. It was one

of the few things that she and her partner disagreed about.

Detective Chief Inspector Ewan Rigston liked torch singers

who delivered big ballads – Adele, Emeli Sandé, Ren

Harvieu. Once she’d even caught him listening to Shirley

Bassey. River reckoned that was all the blackmail capital

she’d ever need with his CID team.

Amy Winehouse finished belting out her version of

‘Valerie’ somewhere north of Dalwhinnie and River

decided she needed some conversation. She cut the music

and rang the number of her best friend. She thought it

was going to shunt straight to voicemail, but at the last

second, Karen Pirie’s voice filled the car. ‘Hey, River,

how’s tricks?’ It sounded like they were doing the same

thing – driving on a fast road at speed.

‘I’m good. I’m heading up the A9.’

Karen laughed. ‘You’re kidding?’

‘I wish I was. This is—’

Karen interrupted with a bad Chris Rea impersonation:

‘—the road to hell.’ Both women laughed. ‘Funny

thing is, so am I.’

‘Really? Where are you headed?’

‘Elgin. I need to interview a woman who owned a red

Rover 214 in 1986.’

River snorted. ‘Has that been reclassified as a crime?’

‘Only when Jeremy Clarkson rules the world. No,

we’ve got a lead on a car that might be implicated in a

series of brutal rapes from the eighties. I’m checking out

the possibilities.’


‘Is that not what you’ve got Jason for?’

‘There’s quite a few possibilities and I’ve nothing else

pressing. Plus . . . ’ She paused. ‘Ann Markie has landed

me with another body. A Weegie refugee from the MIT

through in the west.’

‘MIT? Whose toes did he stamp on to end up with

HCU? Not that I see that as a demotion, obviously.’

‘That’s because you get it. The work we do, what it

means. Jimmy Hutton’s doing some digging to see what

he can find out. I wonder whether it’s as simple as the

Dog Biscuit trying to keep me in line.’

‘The Dog Biscuit?’ River knew there would be an


‘Markies are apparently a kind of dog treat. According

to Jimmy. Anyway, I think what she really wants is a

spy to see what rules I’m breaking. Like Leonard Cohen

says, “The rich have got their channels in the bedrooms

of the poor.”’

‘I thought you’d given up listening to that miserable

old man? Are you slipping back into the depths? Phil so

wouldn’t approve.’

Karen chuckled. ‘Field Commander Cohen was wise as

well as miserable. Anyway, enough of me. What’s dragging

you up the A9?’

‘Inspector Walter Wilson. You ever come across him?’

‘No, is he with Highland?’

‘Yes. Specifically, Ullapool. He’s got a bog body for me.’

‘Ooh. Anything for me?’

River chuckled. ‘You’re a glutton for punishment. But

no, not this time. Inspector Wilson’s information is that

it probably dates back to 1944. So even if we’re looking

at foul play, it’s well outside your seventy- year limit. No

reprieve from the red Rovers for you.’

‘So it goes. Good luck with it anyway. I look forward to

hearing all about it.’

‘Always interesting, a bog body. Up there in Wester

Ross, there should be a high level of preservation, given

the levels of sphagnum moss in the peat. We might even

get fingerprints.’


‘Aye, but what are the chances of meaningful fingerprints

from 1944? We didn’t even fingerprint the army

back then in case it put people off joining up.’

‘I know. But I still enjoy the challenge.’

‘I know what you mean. Like me and my red Rovers.

Anyway, if you can squeeze your bog body under the

seventy- year rule, I’ll only be a couple of hours away in

the morning.’

‘I’ll bear that in mind. But don’t hold your breath.’

Longlisted for The McIlvanney Prize 2019.

Winner to be announced at the Bloody Scotland opening night reception on Friday 20 September.

For festival tickets and information


Amazon Author Page








Lin Anderson @ The Edinburgh International Book Festival with Steve, Blaze and Laoch

Lin Anderson was born in Greenock of Scottish and Irish parents. A graduate of both Glasgow and Edinburgh Universities, she has lived in many different parts of Scotland and also spent five years working in the African bush. A teacher of Mathematics and Computing, she began her writing career four years ago. Her first film, Small Love, which was broadcast on STV, was nominated for TAPS writer of the year award 2001. Her African short stories have been published in the 10th Anniversary Macallan collection and broadcast on BBC Radio Four. Lin Anderson is best known as the creator of the forensic scientist Rhona MacLeod series of crime thriller novels, and for her part in founding the annual ‘Bloody Scotland’ crime writing festival.

Time for the Dead is a gripping crime novel by Lin Anderson and sees forensic scientist Rhona MacLeod discover that a terrifying war is unfolding on Scotland’s Isle of Skye.

When forensic scientist Rhona MacLeod returns to her roots on Scotland’s Isle of Skye, a chance encounter in the woods behind a nearby activities centre leads her to what seems to be a crime scene, but without a victim. Could this be linked to a group of army medics, who visited the centre while on leave from Afghanistan and can no longer be located on the island?

Enlisting the help of local tracker dog Blaze, Rhona starts searching for a connection.

Two days later a body is found at the base of the famous cliff known as Kilt Rock, face and identity obliterated by the fall, which leads Rhona to suspect the missing medics may be on the island for reasons other than relaxation. Furthermore, elements of the case suggests a link with an ongoing operation in Glasgow, which draws DS Michael McNab into the investigation.

As the island’s unforgiving conditions close in, Rhona must find out what really happened to the group in Afghanistan, as the consequences may be being played out in brutal killings on Skye . . .

Rhona MacLeod

Patrick De Courvoisier Mystery

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Mary Paulson – Ellis @ The Edinburgh International Book Festival

Mary Paulson-Ellis lives in Edinburgh. She has an MLitt in Creative Writing from the University of Glasgow and was awarded the inaugural Curtis Brown Prize for Fiction in 2009 and the Literature Works First Page Prize in 2013. Her debut novel, The Other Mrs Walker was a Times bestseller and Waterstones Scottish Book of the Year. Mary was Highly Commended as a Rising Star in the DIVA Literary Awards and shortlisted as a Breakthrough Author in the Books Are My Bag Readers Awards 2017. In 2016 she was named an Amazon Rising Star. The Inheritance of Solomon Farthing is her second novel.

Due out 5th September 2019


Solomon knew that he had one advantage. A pawn ticket belonging to a dead man tucked into his top pocket – the only clue to the truth . . .

An old soldier dies alone in his Edinburgh nursing home. No known relatives, and no Will to enact. Just a pawn ticket found amongst his belongings, and fifty thousand pounds in used notes sewn into the lining of his burial suit . . .

Heir Hunter, Solomon Farthing – down on his luck, until, perhaps, now – is tipped off on this unexplained fortune. Armed with only the deceased’s name and the crumpled pawn ticket, he must find the dead man’s closest living relative if he is to get a cut of this much-needed cash.

But in trawling through the deceased’s family tree, Solomon uncovers a mystery that goes back to 1918 and a group of eleven soldiers abandoned in a farmhouse billet in France in the weeks leading up to the armistice.

Set between contemporary Edinburgh and the final brutal days of the First World War as the soldiers await their orders, The Inheritance of Solomon Farthing shows us how the debts of the present can never be settled unless those of the past have been paid first . . .


Somehow she’d always known that she would end like this. In a small square room, in a small square flat. In a small square box, perhaps. Cardboard, with a sticker on the outside. And a name . . .

An old lady dies alone and unheeded in a cold Edinburgh flat on a snowy Christmas night. A faded emerald dress hangs in her wardrobe; a spilt glass of whisky pools on the floor.

A few days later a middle-aged woman arrives back in the city she thought she’d left behind, her future uncertain, her past in tatters.

She soon finds herself a job at the Office for Lost People, tracking down the families of those who have died neglected and alone.

But what Margaret Penny cannot yet know, is just how entangled her own life will become in the death of one lonely stranger . . .

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Authors Twitter Hashtag @mspaulsonellis

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There’s Been a Murder Picks of the Edinburgh International Book Festival 2019 Part Four

Tom Barbash & Ewan Morrison

Thu 22 Aug 13:45 – 14:45 The Spiegeltent £12.00, £10.00


Hear from two authors whose latest fictions are founded on fantastical fact as they discuss their new books with author David Mitchell. Multi-talented Scottish writer Ewan Morrison returns to novel-writing with Nina X, a story of a girl’s imprisonment in a London flat by a monstrous leader. The brilliant American author Tom Barbash launches his evocative and wildly absorbing new novel The Dakota Winters, set in New York City in the run-up to John Lennon’s assassination.

Mark Billingham 

 Thu 22 Aug 20:45 – 21:45 


 Spark Theatre on George Street 


 £12.00, £10.00

Mark Billingham


Mark Billingham has a secret in store for fans of Tom Thorne and Nicola Tanner. Their Little Secret, the latest from the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel Award winner, features a single mum seeking excitement but finding something altogether more frightening. While Billingham is riding high on the success of one bestseller after another, he continues to write intelligent and authentic crime books. What’s his secret? Find out today as he talks to Scottish comedian Fred MacAulay.

Elif Shafak 

 Fri 23 Aug 10:15 – 11:15 


 The Spiegeltent 


 £12.00, £10.00

Elif Shafak

Sponsored by


Studies of bodies shortly after death suggest brain activity may continue for minutes after the blood supply has stopped. This lies behind Elif Shafak’s intriguing novel 10 Minutes and 38 Seconds in This Strange World, which chronicles the ebbing thoughts of a murdered Turkish woman. Surprisingly funny and deeply moving, the story explores her gorgeous memories as well as the mistreatment of one ordinary human. Join Shafak as she discusses the ideas in her new book with Lennie Goodings.

Haylen Beck & Lilja Sigurdardottir 

 Fri 23 Aug 13:45 – 14:45 


 The Spiegeltent 


 £ What you can 

Pay what you can for this event: choose your own ticket price on the booking form.

Haylen Beck & Lilja Sigurdardottir


Missing boys connect new books from Edgar-nominated author Haylen Beck (pen name of bestselling writer Stuart Neville) and Icelandic crime writer Lilja Sigurdardottir. Beck’s Lost You follows two women seeking a disappeared child whom they both claim is rightfully theirs. In Trap, the second entry in Sigurdardottir’s Reykjavik Noir trilogy, a young mother finds herself in the midst of a nightmare when her son is snatched. Discover gripping new fiction this afternoon as they talk to author Mary Paulson-Ellis.

We invite you to Pay What You Can for this event. You may choose to pay an amount between £0 and £25 for your ticket, taking into consideration what you can reasonably afford to spend. This pricing has been introduced to help make the Book Festival accessible to those with limited means. If you are able to pay more for your ticket, you will help support our efforts to provide financial flexibility to those who most need it.

Leye Adenle & Alan Parks 

 Sat 24 Aug 13:45 – 14:45 


 The Spiegeltent 


 £12.00, £10.00

Leye Adenle & Alan Parks


The second book in Nigeria-born Leye Adenle’s Amaka Mbadiwe series, When Trouble Sleeps, finds the self-appointed saviour of Lagos’s sex workers embroiled in a political scandal that may have devastating consequences. Scottish crime writer Alan Parks returns to his Harry McCoy thriller series as Glasgow’s gangland warfare heats up in February’s Son. These are two talented writers to keep an eye on.

Kirsty Wark 

 Sat 24 Aug 18:45 – 19:45 


 The New York Times Main Theatre 


 £12.00, £10.00

Kirsty Wark


After a hugely successful debut novel which harnessed exquisite storytelling and a gorgeous evocation of wartime Arran, Kirsty Wark returns with The House by the Loch, a family mystery set on the shores of Loch Doon. A young mother feels trapped in her remote rural home, and the consequences reverberate for generations. One of our leading broadcasters, Wark proves she knows the difference between fiction and fake news. Chaired by Jane Fowler.

Claire Askew & Thomas Enger 

 Sun 25 Aug 12:00 – 13:00 


 The Spiegeltent 


 £12.00, £10.00

Claire Askew & Thomas Enger


Our Citizen schools writer-in-residence, Claire Askew, is a major new voice in British crime fiction. What You Pay For is her second novel, revolving around the mysterious reappearance of DI Birch’s younger brother. Norway’s Thomas Enger is making waves with his latest, Inborn, which covers disturbing ground as a teenager is charged with the murders of two school friends. Discover a new generation of noir superstars.

George Alagiah 

 Sun 25 Aug 18:45 – 19:45 


 The New York Times Main Theatre 


 £12.00, £10.00

George Alagiah


Join popular BBC broadcaster George Alagiah as he takes off his reporting hat and plunges into a new career as political thriller writer, drawing on his knowledge and experience of working in Africa. The Burning Land sees South Africa torn apart by propaganda and murder as one of the country’s bright young hopes is slain. Two childhood friends reunite in order to fight for the soul of their nation. Chaired by Allan Little.

Vote for The Burning Land by George Alagiah in the First Book Award.

Jan-Philipp Sendker 

 Mon 26 Aug 15:30 – 16:30 


 Writers’ Retreat 


 £8.00, £6.00

Jan-Philipp Sendker


Few things could be more terrifying than a threat against your child’s safety. That’s the propulsive force behind Jan-Philipp Sendker’s gripping thriller The Far Side of the Night, the last in the bestselling Rising Dragon series. Paul and Christine are many miles from the sanctuary of China’s US Embassy, in need of help and unable to trust the strangers around them. Sendker takes us deep into the soul of modern China.

Wayne Holloway & Malcolm Mackay 

 Mon 26 Aug 20:30 – 21:30 


 Baillie Gifford Corner Theatre 


 £8.00, £6.00

Wayne Holloway & Malcolm Mackay


Join two writers with captivating but bleak visions of the future. In Bindlestiff, author and director Wayne Holloway weaves prose and screenplay to craft a dystopian satire on Hollywood, race and class divisions in a post-Trump era. Stornoway writer Malcolm Mackay’s A Line of Forgotten Blood is a gumshoe caper set in an independent, and corrupt, Scotland. Are their tales really as far-fetched as they initially seem?

For more information about these and other events going on you can check out the Edinburgh International Book Festival at

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There’s Been a Murder Picks of the Edinburgh International Book Festival 2019 Part Three

Sue Lawrence & Angela Meyer 

 Sun 18 Aug 13:45 – 14:45 


 The Spiegeltent 


 £12.00, £10.00

Sue Lawrence & Angela Meyer


Masterchef winner Sue Lawrence is known for her cookery writing but is also an established writer of historical thrillers. Lawrence discusses Down to the Sea, a tense affair switching between modern-day and 1890s Edinburgh. Melbourne-based Angela Meyer’s debut A Superior Spectre also zips back and forth in time, and 1860s Edinburgh provides a dark setting. Hear how the city’s past sparked these authors’ imaginations, as they talk to Jenny Brown.

Quintin Jardine 

 Sun 18 Aug 19:15 – 20:15 


 Spark Theatre on George Street 


 £12.00, £10.00

Quintin Jardine


Ex-Chief Constable Bob Skinner is enjoying his 30th anniversary as a fictional character and in book number 30, Cold Case, his Scottish creator Quintin Jardine turns the screw on him once again. When a journalist uncovers fresh evidence about a case that has been closed for three decades, Skinner is dragged back to save an old pal. Hear from this prolific master about the creation of an epic series.

Susan Fletcher & Michelle Paver 

 Mon 19 Aug 10:15 – 11:15 


 The Spiegeltent 


 £12.00, £10.00

Susan Fletcher & Michelle Paver


While horror fans lap up blood and gore, the subtlety of a well-told ghost story can chill a reader to the bones. House of Glass, by Whitbread First Novel Award-winning Susan Fletcher, features love, lies and ghosts as Britain enters the First World War. Michelle Paver’s Wakenhyrst is a gothic thriller where unspeakable forces are unleashed. Join them to discuss the art of building spine-tingling suspense.

Kjell Ola Dahl & Mary Paulson-Ellis 

 Mon 19 Aug 13:45 – 14:45 


 The Spiegeltent 


 £12.00, £10.00

Kjell Ola Dahl & Mary Paulson-Ellis


In his new book The Courier, Kjell Ola Dahl, aka the godfather of Nordic Noir, tracks between the 1960s and the Second World War through characters haunted by betrayal and death. Mary Paulson-Ellis follows up her 2017 Waterstones Scottish Book of the Year with The Inheritance of Solomon Farthing, a historical mystery that sees a modern-day heir hunter in Scotland seeking the owner of a dead man’s fortune. They meet to discuss the power of long-dead secrets.

Caroline Lea & Kaite Welsh 

 Mon 19 Aug 14:00 – 15:00 


 Baillie Gifford Corner Theatre 


 £8.00, £6.00

Caroline Lea & Kaite Welsh


Period thrillers don’t get better than these two new British novels by Caroline Lea and Kaite Welsh. In Lea’s stellar The Glass Woman, a windswept 17th century Icelandic village is plunged into paranoia with the arrival of a newly married couple. Welsh’s popular Victorian Edinburgh medical mystery series continues in The Unquiet Heart, as Sarah Gilchrist finds herself defending her dull fiancé against murder charges. The two writers discuss their ideas with fellow novelist Angela Meyer.

Lin Anderson & Jacob Ross 

 Tue 20 Aug 13:45 – 14:45 


 The Spiegeltent 


 £12.00, £10.00

Lin Anderson & Jacob Ross


Bestselling crime writer Lin Anderson launches her second Rhona MacLeod thriller of the year. Time for the Dead sees the forensics expert seek the truth of a horrible crime on the Isle of Skye. Grenada-born novelist Jacob Ross’s Black Rain Falling features forensics expert Michael ‘Digger’ Digson, as he finds out the lengths people go to to protect their loved ones. The pair dissect their unsettling new novels today.

Mark Galeotti 

 Tue 20 Aug 15:45 – 16:45 


 Spark Theatre on George Street 


 £12.00, £10.00

Mark Galeotti


Known by their distinctive tattoos, the vory v zakone (translated as ‘thief in law’) have a long and dishonourable history as a criminal underclass in the Soviet Union and Russia. An expert on transnational crime and Russian security affairs, Mark Galeotti traces their trajectory in The Vory: Russia’s Super Mafia from Gulag offenders to the age of the oligarch, all examined in today’s eye-opening event with Trevor Royle.

Denise Mina & Matt Wesolowski 

 Tue 20 Aug 19:15 – 20:15 


 Spark Theatre on George Street 


 £12.00, £10.00

Denise Mina & Matt Wesolowski


If you’re addicted to true crime podcasts, the new page-turners discussed today give you good reason to remove those headphones. McIlvanney Prize winner Denise Mina’s Conviction involves a woman plunging wrecklessly into a podcast’s unsolved mystery after she was abandoned. Acclaimed horror writer Matt Wesolowski’s Changeling continues his book series with the case of a disappeared boy. Don’t miss this event if you’re a fan of the massively popular true crime podcast Serial.

Jess Kidd & E S Thomson 

 Wed 21 Aug 10:15 – 11:15 


 The Spiegeltent 


 £12.00, £10.00

Jess Kidd & E S Thomson


Medicine, murder and the macabre meet in Victorian London. A discovery in an anatomy school mortuary takes Jem Flockhart and Will Quartermain on a high-stakes search for answers in E S Thomson’s Surgeon’s Hall. Jess Kidd’s Things in Jars sees Bridie Devine, the finest female detective in 1860s London, take on the case of a child gone missing. Hear what attracted both to set mysteries in the London fog. Chaired by Anya Clayworth.

For more information about these and other events going on you can check out the Edinburgh International Book Festival at

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