Boiled human bones have been found in Norwich's web of underground tunnels. When Dr Ruth Galloway discovers they were recently buried, DCI Nelson has a murder enquiry on his hands. The boiling might have been just a medieval curiosity - now it suggests a much more sinister purpose. Meanwhile, DS Judy Johnson is investigating the disappearance of a local rough sleeper. The only trace of her is the rumour that she's gone 'underground'.
Winner of the British Book Awards, Book of the Year, 2005.
A murder in the silent, late night halls of the Louvre reveals a sinister plot to uncover a secret that has been protected by a clandestine society since the days of Christ. The victim is a high-ranking agent of this ancient society who, in the moments before his death, manages to leave gruesome clues at the scene that only his cryptographer daughter and her symbologist friend can untangle.
"The stressful car-ride to work?"
Beatrice Scarlet is the apothecary's daughter. She can mix medicines to save lives - but she can't save the lives of her parents. An orphan at just sixteen, Beatrice marries and emigrates to America. New Hampshire, 1756: In the farming community where Beatrice now lives, pigs are found dead with slices of looking-glass embedded in their mouths. According to scripture this is the work of Satan, but Beatrice suspects the hands of men. She must act quickly to unmask the killer - or become the next victim herself....
"A very different setting for a thriller"
Behold the man: Stinking, drunk, brutal and bloodthirsty, Henry Drax is a harpooner on the Volunteer, a Yorkshire whaling ship bound for the hunting waters of the Arctic Circle. Also aboard is Patrick Sumner, an ex-army surgeon with a shattered reputation, no money, and no better option than to embark as ship's medic on this ill-fated voyage.
"Fluid and fluids"
Penguin presents the unabridged,downloadable audiobook edition of The Strings of Murder by Oscar de Muriel, read by Andy Secombe, including musical interludes recorded by the author himself. Edinburgh, 1888. A virtuoso violinist is brutally killed in his home. But with no way in or out of the locked practice room, the murder makes no sense. Fearing a national panic over a copycat Ripper, Scotland Yard sends Inspector Ian Frey to investigate under the cover of a fake department specializing in the occult.
"A really good yarn."
Elizabeth II's coronation is looming, but the murder of their wartime commander, Colonel Cartwright, spoils the happy mood for DI Edgar Stephens and magician Max Mephisto. A playbill featuring another deceased comrade is found in Colonel Cartwright's possession, and a playing card, the ace of hearts: the blood card. The wartime connection and the suggestion of magic are enough for him to put Stephens and Mephisto on the case.
"Another good book by Elly"
125 Gower Street, 1882: Sidney Grice was once London's premier personal detective. But since his last case led an innocent man to the gallows, business has been light. Listless and depressed, Grice has not even gathered the strength to re-insert his glass eye. Then an eccentric member of a Final Death Society has the temerity to die on his study floor. Finally Sidney and March have an investigation, one that will draw them to an eerie house in Kew, and the mysterious Baroness Foskett....
"A selection of ghastly endings and sly sniggers"
When torrential summer rains uncover a bizarrely tattooed body on a Lake District hillside, old wives' tales also come swirling to the surface. For centuries Lakelanders have whispered that Fletcher Christian staged the massacre on Pitcairn so that he could return home. And there he told his story to an old friend and schoolmate, William Wordsworth, who turned it into a long narrative poem.
On 3 December 1976, just weeks before Bob Marley was to play the Smile Jamaica Concert to ease political tensions, seven gunmen from West Kingston stormed his house. Marley survived and went on to perform at the free concert. Not a lot was recorded about the fate of the seven gunmen, but much has been said, whispered and sung about in the streets of West Kingston.
"'Brief' it was not"
1804. Napoleon Bonaparte is Emperor of France, his ultimate aim: to rule Europe. After defeat at the Battle of Trafalgar, he wins a glorious victory against Austria at Austerlitz. He then deposes the Spanish king and places his own brother on the throne. But he is yet to triumph over his most hated enemy: Great Britain. Arthur Wellesley (the future Duke of Wellington) throws himself into the British campaign in Europe. After glory in Portugal, he commands the army in a series of triumphant battles across Spain.
Gower Street, London, 1882: Sidney Grice, London's most famous personal detective, is expecting a visitor. He drains his fifth pot of morning tea, and glances outside, where a young, plain woman picks her way between the piles of horse-dung towards his front door. Sidney Grice shudders. For heaven's sake - she is wearing brown shoes. The Mangle Street Murders is for those who like their crime original, atmospheric, and very, very funny.
The second novel in Simon Scarrow's best-selling Roman series. When Centurion Macro arrives on British soil as one of Emperor Claudius's invasion force in 43 AD, he is facing one of the toughest campaigns of his battle-scarred career. In a series of bloody skirmishes, Macro and his young subordinate, Optio Cato, and the desperately outnumbered Roman army must find and defeat the enemy before he grows strong enough to overwhelm the legions. But the Britons are not the only foe facing Macro and Cato....
London, 1654. Oliver Cromwell is at the height of his power and has declared himself Lord Protector. Yet he has many enemies at home and abroad. London is a complex web of spies and merchants, priests and soldiers, exiles and assassins. One of the web's most fearsome spiders is Damian Seeker, agent of the Lord Protector. No one knows where Seeker comes from, who his family is, or even his real name. All that is known of him for certain is that he is utterly loyal to Cromwell and that nothing can be long hidden from him.
In February 1941 British Command surrendered to the Nazis. Churchill has been executed, the King is in the Tower and the SS are in Whitehall...For nine months Britain has been occupied - a blitzed, depressed and dingy country. However, it's 'business as usual' at Scotland Yard run by the SS when Detective Inspector Archer is assigned to a routine murder case. Life must go on.
"Complex and compelling"
Los Angeles, 1958: a city on the make. A boomtown at the edge of a new era ripe for plunder. Lieutenant Dave Klein: in turn a lawyer, bagman, slum landlord, mob killer. Klein stands at the centre of a complex web of plots where violence and death will intersect, a power in his own small corner of hell. Then the feds announce a full-out investigation into local police corruption, and everything goes haywire. Klein's been hung out as bait, 'a bad cop to draw the heat', and the heat's coming from all sides.
Paris, 1585: Giordano Bruno has come to Paris, a city on the edge of catastrophe. Alone and near destitute, Bruno turns to old friend and zealous preacher Paul Lefevre. But when the priest is murdered, Bruno is pulled into a dangerous world. If Bruno can't uncover the truth, not only is the future of the de Valois monarchy threatened - but his own life will be the forfeit.
The third novel in Simon Scarrow's best-selling Roman series. After a series of bloody battles, Camulodunum (modern-day Colchester) has fallen to the invading Roman army. The Emperor has returned to Rome, leaving the fearless Centurion Macro and his young Optio, Cato, to rest and regroup, along with the rest of the Second Legion. As their leader, General Plautius, plans the next phase of their campaign, word arrives that the ship carrying his family to join him was wrecked in a storm off the south coast.
"And here I'm stuck!"
It's 1666. The Great Plague has passed. Londoners celebrate survival in different ways. They drink. They gamble. They indulge in carnal delights. But 666 is the number of the Beast, the year foretold when Christ will return. A gang of fanatics - the Saints - choose to hasten that prophesied day. They will kidnap, rape, murder. Above all they will kill a king. Two men - the highwayman William Coke and the thief-taker Pitman - are recruited to stop them.
London, 1727 - and Tom Hawkins is about to fall from his heaven of card games, brothels, and coffeehouses to the hell of a debtors' prison. The Marshalsea is a savage world of its own, with simple rules: those with family or friends who can lend them a little money may survive in relative comfort. Those with none will starve in squalor and disease. And those who try to escape will suffer a gruesome fate at the hands of the gaol's rutheless governor and his cronies.
"One of the best audio books I've chosen recently"
Shortlisted for the British Book Awards, Richard and Judy Best Read, 2007.Winner of the Costa Book Awards, Novel of the Year, 2006.A Richard and Judy Book Club selection.Longlisted for the Audiobook Download of the Year, 2007.What happens when everything you thought you knew about your mother turns out to be an elaborate lie? During the summer of 1976, Ruth Gilmartin discovers that her very English mother, Sally, is really Eva Delectorskaya, a Russian émigrée and one-time spy.
"A gripping and thoughtful book"
World War II is over, and former German intelligence officer Captain Gregor Reinhardt has returned to Berlin, having been hired back onto Berlin's police force. When a man is found slain, Reinhardt embarks on a gruesome investigation. It seems a serial killer is on the loose, and matters only escalate when it's discovered that one of the victims was the brother of a Nazi scientist.
When Russian soldiers invade Eastern Europe during WWII, they ravage the countryside and terrorize the people. After her mother is murdered, young Ludmelia Kudirka flees to the safety of the forest. Vowing vengeance, she joins the partisan resistance in a David-and-Goliath struggle against Stalin's mighty war machine. A Soviet military officer ordered to crush the Lithuanian resistance is enraged by Ludmelia's escape.
The moment Angelique arrives in Paris, she is taken prisoner by the SS. In a lonely little room, she is put in a chair with leather straps and a bloodstained seat and ordered to tell her captors everything she knows about the resistance. But Angelique knows nothing. She cares only for Martin, the boy who has been unable to speak since the bombs first fell during the Blitzkrieg. He has a secret - and she will protect it until her dying breath.
A Christmas mystery introducing Owen Irvine, the Lake District shepherd-cum-detective hero of JJ Salkeld's A Natural Detective series. Set in the mid-1980s, this entertaining short story concerns the theft of the baby Jesus himself. All right, it's only a small wooden figure from the church's nativity scene, but as far as the vicar is concerned, dark forces must surely be at play in the Kentmere valley.
Members of the House of Lords are turning up murdered in their beds all over London. Lord Southerton is investigating the connection that links them, when an orphaned girl turns up on his doorstep. Now South is now more determined than ever to find the killer, but he's always one step behind him. How will the killings ever stop, unless he catches him?
One morning in April 1924, the Honorable Daisy Dalrymple Fletcher finds herself in a most unenviable position. Despite her best attempts to elude the inevitable, she must face her darkest fears and with all the strength and courage she can muster, must confront the one person she has tried hardest to avoid - the dentist. But upon arriving for her appointment, she finds the waiting room deserted and adjoining examination room locked, with no hint of either Dr. Talmadge or his nurse.
Abby Kimball has just moved to New England with her boyfriend and is trying to settle in, but the experience is proving to be quite unsettling, to say the least. While on a tour of local historic homes, Abby witnesses a family scene that leaves her gasping for breath - because the family has been dead for nearly a century. Another haunting episode follows, and another, until it seems to Abby that everything she touches is drawing her in, calling to her from the past.
The year after defeating the Spanish Armada, England retaliates. The expedition to Portugal sets out to destroy what remains of Spain's Atlantic fleet, drive the Spanish out of Portugal, put the claimant Dom Antonio of Aviz on the throne, and seize the Azores. But from the time the English fleet, led by Drake and Norreys, reaches Plymouth, things start to go wrong. Christoval Alvarez, sent to carry out two missions by Walsingham, has a more important private plan in mind.
In the early 1960s, Hallowell, Maine was a sleepy small city on the Kennebec River. Dip Barrett ran a beer store where he socialized with local criminals and took bets for horse racing tracks around the state. His business and the community are turned upside down when the body of a young man is found in the Kennebec River....
Includes five stories of Secret Agent X.: "Dead Men Don't Lie", "Face to Face with Agent Loki", "Devil in the Deep Blue Sea", and "The Death Duel of Madam Rogue" .
Lars Bonner rode into the little town of Rocky Canyon with the bodies of two outlaws tied across their horses. He is also returning the money the two had robbed from the town's bank. The town doesn't have a sheriff. It seems the last one to hold that positon left town without so much as a goodbye. At first it seems he will have nowhere to deliver the corpses in order to collect his bounty. However, the mayor who is also the banker agrees to sign the required affidavits.
During Prohibition a shamed wrestler named Butch "The Butcher" Cardinal is framed for murder and subsequently hunted by the cops, the mob, and a mysterious cabal who are eager to acquire a stolen trinket that might very well be as magical as the men claim. During the frame-up Butch came into possession of the piece and the cabal will do whatever they can - including murder - to get their hands on the object.
Ever since news of Edgar Allan Poe's mysterious death in Baltimore was published in October of 1849, the global community of Poe fans has wanted to know what really happened to him. And Poe Said will give them exactly what they've been looking for: answers. But, dear listener, beware! Some truths are better left buried in the obscurity of the past, for as Poe himself once wrote, "...not in knowledge is happiness, but in the acquisition of knowledge!"
Flora Maguire, a young governess, is on her way home on the SS Minneapolis after the wedding of her employer's daughter. She meets the charming Bunny Harrington on deck on the first night and is conscious of her status among the first-class passengers. Flora finds the body of a man at the bottom of a companionway, and when his death is pronounced an accident, she is not convinced and is driven to find out the truth.
James Patterson's BookShots. Short, fast-paced, high-impact entertainment. The greatest story in modern history has a new chapter.... Posing as newlyweds, two ruthless thieves board the Titanic to rob its well-heeled passengers. But an even more shocking plan is afoot - a sensational scheme that could alter the fate of the world's most famous ship.
A duchess has been stolen from her bed in the middle of the night. The Marquess of Southerton happens upon the scene, only to find the entire chamber bathed in blood. Who did this violence? And how is it connected to his own wife's near murder? Things are not what they seem in the dark, foggy, crime-plagued streets of Regency London.
Ty Elliot returns to his home after an absence of two years, knowing full well the danger which threatens him each hour he lingers in the old cabin in the mountains. But with his father on his death bed and his younger sister exhausted, Ty knows he must remain for a time at least. When his father makes a strange request and begs his returned son to "find her", Ty promises but is bewildered. Who is he to find?
The year is 1703. The place: The Carolina settlement of Charles Town. Matthew Corbett, professional 'problem solver,' has accepted a lucrative, if unusual, commission: Escorting a beautiful woman to a fancy dress ball. What should be a pleasant assignment takes a darker turn when Matthew becomes involved in a murder investigation.
"JUST WHEN THE STORY WAS....."
The Carolinas, 1699: The citizens of Fount Royal believe a witch has cursed their town with inexplicable tragedies -- and they demand that beautiful widow Rachel Howarth be tried and executed for witchcraft. Presiding over the trial is traveling magistrate Issac Woodward, aided by his astute young clerk, Matthew Corbett. Believing in Rachel's innocence, Matthew will soon confront the true evil at work in Fount Royal....
"A beautifully read, chilling tale."
It's Christmastime in 1905 New York City, and for once Molly Murphy Sullivan is looking forward to the approaching holidays. She has a family of her own now: She and Daniel have a baby son, and 12-year-old Bridie is living with them as their ward. As Molly and the children listen to carolers in the street, they hear a lovely voice, the voice of an angel, and see a beggar girl huddled in a doorway, singing "Away in a Manger". Bridie is touched by the girl's ragged clothes and wants to help her out if they can.
An old English Yule has never been merrier or more mysterious. A New Year's celebration has never looked more joyous but been so potentially deadly. Fearing the 12 Days of Christmas of 1564 may be the last for her ailing, elderly friend, Lady Kat Ashley, Queen Elizabeth decrees a nostalgic, old-fashioned holiday. Delicious dishes for the table, holly and ivy, caroling, wassailing, mumming, and a Lord of Misrule to oversee it all are in the recipe for the revels. But one of the queen's kitchen staff is found as dead as the ornate peacock he was preparing for the feast.
It is 1628, Charles I is on the throne, and the British Crown is finally taking control of Ulster. Returning to his rooms one night, Alexander Seaton is shocked to find a stranger standing there - a man who could be his double. His name is Sean O'Neill, and he carries a plea for help from Maeve O'Neill, forbidding matriarch of Alexander's mother's family in Ireland. All those who bear their blood have been placed under a curse and only Alexander, whose heritage has been kept a secret, is immune.
The Queen of England has concocted a plan in which penniless aristocrat Lady Georgie is to entertain a Bavarian princess and conveniently place her in the playboy prince's path, in the hopes that he might finally marry.
But queens never take money into account. Georgie has very little, which is why she moonlights as a maid-in-disguise.
"Murder in the bookshop (almost a library)"
Crispin Guest is a disgraced knight, stripped of his rank and his honor - but left with his life - for plotting against Richard II. Having lost his bethrothed, his friends, his patrons and his position in society. With no trade to support him and no family willing to acknowledge him, Crispin has turned to the one thing he still has - his wits - to scrape a living together on the mean streets of London.
"Think: Dick Van Dyke as Bert from Mary Poppins."
This charming series of Victorian murder mysteries features mild-mannered Inspector Witherspoon of Scotland Yard and, more importantly, Mrs Jeffries, his housekeeper. A policeman's widow herself, her quick wits allow her to nudge the Inspector in the right direction to solve the crime. Early in the new year, Mrs. Hodges attends her first séance and the medium foresees her death. That same night, the prediction comes true, and Scotland Yard's Inspector Witherspoon, is on the case.
"Well done Mrs Jeffries"
Nothing is simple when you're 35th in line for the British crown, least of all marriage. But with love on their side and plans to elope, Lady Georgiana Rannoch and her beau, Darcy O'Mara, hope to bypass a few royal rules...
"The Winter Warmer"
Imagine the twisted evil twins of Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson and you have the dangerous duo of Professor James Moriarty - wily, snake-like, fiercely intelligent, terrifyingly unpredictable - and Colonel Sebastian Basher Moran - violent, politically incorrect, debauched. Together they run London crime, owning police and criminals alike. When a certain Irene Adler turns up on their doorstep with a proposition, neither man is able to resist.
Just returned from years overseas on a secret mission, Albert Campion is relaxing in his bath when his servant Lugg and a lady of unmistakably aristocratic bearing appear in his flat carrying the corpse of a woman. At first Campion is unwilling to get involved, but he is forced to bring his powers of protection to bear on the case, and to solve not only the mystery of the murdered woman but also the alarming disappearance of some well-known art treasures.
"Excellent book that keeps you guessing right to the end"
It is Midsummer, 1631, and while Alexander Seaton and his fellow masters enjoy the holiday, Robert Sim, librarian of Marischal College, is murdered in a dark alleyway in town. As the university and town authorities investigate the murder, Seaton is asked by the college principal to look into Sim's private life. During the course of this research, Alexander discovers a side to the librarian he could never have guessed, and personal feelings threaten to cloud his judgment and endanger his new marriage.
"Trouble in Aberdeen"
Ancient Rome, in this accurate and evocative series, is just as politics driven as any major American city - possibly even more. Decius Caecilius Metellus has, through a series of rather wild adventure, and in the act of tracking down killers and other reprobates, barely escaped annhilation several times. Now, newly elected to the office of aedile, the lowest rung on the ladder of Roman authority, he must smoke out corruption and conspiracy that threaten to destroy all of Rome.
""It's easier to hide an elephant under a bed than a conspiracy in Rome""
In his forties, the Reverend Charles Howard still cut an impressive figure. A married Presbyterian minister in Toronto's east end, Howard was popular with the congregation that elected him, especially with the ladies, and most particularly with Miss Sarah Dignam. Respected in the community, Howard, as Visitor for the House of Industry, sat in judgment on the poor, assessing their applications for the workhouse. But now Howard is dead, stabbed and brutally beaten by someone he invited into his office.
Georgie, aka Lady Victoria Georgiana Charlotte Eugenie, cousin of King George V of England, is penniless and trying to survive on her own as an ordinary person in London in 1932. So far she has managed to light a fire and boil an egg... She's gate-crashed a wedding... She's making money by secretly cleaning houses... And she's been asked to spy for Her Majesty the Queen.
"Body found in Dukes bath!!!"
The fourth book in the highly acclaimed Alexander Seaton series. 1635: Europe is in the grip of the brutal territorial and religious struggle of the Thirty Years' War. Fear stalks the town of Aberdeen as a ship recruiting for the wars lies at anchor in the river mouth.
It is 1644, and Parliament's armies have risen against the King and laid siege to the city of York. Even as the city suffers at the rebels' hands, midwife Bridget Hodgson becomes embroiled in a different sort of rebellion. One of Bridget's friends, Esther Cooper, has been convicted of murdering her husband and sentenced to be burnt alive. Convinced that her friend is innocent, Bridget sets out to find the real killer.
Sir Richard Francis Burton is an explorer, linguist, scholar, and swordsman. His reputation has been tarnished, his career is in tatters, and his former partner is missing and probably dead. Algernon Charles Swinburne is an unsuccessful poet and follower of de Sade, for whom pain is pleasure and brandy is ruin. The two men are sucked into the perilous depths of this moral and ethical vacuum, when Lord Palmerston commissions Burton to investigate assaults on young women.
"Steam Punked and Loving it"
Miranda Brand is visiting Germany for what is supposed to be a month's vacation. But from the moment that Brigadier Brindley relates the story about a fortune in lost diamonds - a story in which Miranda herself figures in an unusual way - the vacation atmosphere becomes transformed into something more ominous. And when murder strikes on the night train to Berlin, Miranda finds herself unwillingly involved in a complex chain of events that will soon throw her own life into peril.
The theatres are padlocked. Christmas has been cancelled. It is 1657, and the unloved English Republic is eight years old. Though Cromwell's joyless grip on power appears immovable, many still look to Charles Stuart's dissolute and threadbare court-in-exile, and some are prepared to risk their lives plotting a restoration. For the officers of the Republic, constant vigilance is needed. So, when the bloody corpse of a Royalist spy is discovered in a small Essex village, why is the local magistrate so reluctant to investigate?