Crime fiction… any recommendations?

In my book club we are planning to read a crime fiction/police procedural next time and we’ve been looking for ideas. As this is my favourite genre, I had quite a few ideas! However, I seem to just stick to the same authors, so any suggestions?

Here is what I thought of, but these are all stories I’ve read (not that I mind rereading them!)

  • Historical detective – ‘Dissolution’ C. J. Sansom – a cracking good read, first in the series of Shardlake novels, set at the time of Henry VIII
  •  Shetland detective – ‘Raven Black’ by Ann Cleeves – great story and fascinating setting, first in series of Jimmy Perez novels (ignore the pathetic TV version)
  • Icelandic detective – ‘House of Evidence’ by Viktor Arnar Ingólfsson, great and intricate story which is much more than a who-dunnit, starts with a dead body found in a house locked from the inside and no weapon
  • Yorkshire detective duo – there are about 24 Pasco and Dalziel books, police procedurals by Reginald Hill- I think the earlier ones are better, but there are plenty to choose from; again, ignore any of the TV series which may be good in their own right but are nothing like as good as the original… a good one to look at might be ‘The Wood Beyond’ but I also recommend ‘On Beulah Height’ and I defy anyone to guess the ending!
  • Classic detective – Inspector Roderick ‘Rory’ Alleyn books by Ngaio Marsh, she wrote over 30 books between 1934 – 1982, typical slightly old-fashioned but very readable stories
  •  Spy detective – George Smiley, John le Carré’s spy from ‘Tinker Tailor, Soldier, Spy’ etc, becomes a detective in ‘A Murder of Quality’



  1. Peter Bull

    Seeing that you already have an Icelandic author on your list, why not try some other Scandinavian crime writers, as they seem to have a nice feel for the genre. Anything by Karin Fossum from her Inspector Sejer series would be a good start. I also like Arnuldur Indridason, another Icelandic writer, and his series of Reykjavik Murder Mysteries. All good Kindle fodder.


    1. Lois

      Excellent, thank you Peter! I shall follow them up – I’ve not come across those names before; I fell in love with Iceland when I visited last year, so combining crime and Iceland seems like an excellent idea!


    1. Lois

      You’re right – I did wonder if everybody might have read Rankin… but I dare say they’ve all read Reg Hill too! I liked McDermid’s early books, but the psychological ones didn’t really grab me… but she is a great writer, and a very interesting person!


  2. Isabel Lunn

    What about Ann Granger? She writes in a couple of genres. She has her Mitchell and Markby series, Campbell and Carter and Fran Varadywhich are a bit darker and then her historical crime novels with Inspector Ben Ross.


    1. Lois

      I was trying to remember her… there used to be a lot of her books in Lees library when we lived there… I must go back and reread Mitchell and Markby… I didn’t like Fran Varady as much… and I don’t think I’ve come across Campbell and Carter… needs investigation!


      1. Isabel Lunn

        No, I didn’t like Fran Varady much either. Campbell and Carter are her latest duo who wouldn’t have been in Lees library when you lived there. I took one of the Inspector Ben Ross stories away with me on my kindle along with Jim’s latest book “Tango in Madeira” and a couple of others


      2. Lois

        I’m reading Britain BC at the moment – totally into my archaeology!!
        Do you remember some books written by a woman with titles based on ‘Green grow the rushes-o’? I used to enjoy them but can’t remember the title or the author!


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