British Library Publishing

Books published by British Library Publishing

The Corpse in the Waxworks

Henri Bencolin of the Seine and head of detectives for the Parisian police faces one of his most baffling cases when a young women heads into the Gallery of Horrors at a waxworks and is found murdered in the River Seine the following day, then her friend is discovered dead and garishly displayed inside the same museum.

Reviewed on 30 April 2022 by John Cleal

The Port of London Murders

Lost cargo on the river Thames leads police and two unlikely detectives to an apparent suicide, a smuggling ring and a murderous drug importing ring.

Reviewed on 24 April 2021 by John Cleal

The Woman in the Wardrobe

The infallible amateur sleuth Mr Verity must unravel a locked-room mystery with a hotel maid found bound in a wardrobe as an unreliable witness.

Reviewed on 24 April 2021 by John Cleal

Crossed Skis

When the victim of a ruthless murder is found in a room at Mrs Stein's guest house burnt beyond recognition, little remains in the way of clues – except the distinctive impression of a ski stick left in the mud outside the front door.

Reviewed on 13 March 2021 by Viv Beeby

Death in Fancy Dress

The dissolute Sir Ralph Feltham is murdered at a fancy-dress ball at his former home Feltham Abbey. Lawyer Tony Keith and his adventurer schoolfriend Jeremy Freyne, there to investigate possible links to a blackmail ring, investigate.

Reviewed on 22 August 2020 by John Cleal

The Body in the Dumb River

The body of Jim Lane is found in a Cambridgeshire river with a knife wound in his back. Scotland Yard Superintendent Tom Littlejohn, in the area on another case, is asked to assist by local police and quickly discovers popular showman Lane is not who he seems to be.

Reviewed on 31 July 2020 by John Cleal

It Walks By Night

Prefect of the Paris city police Henri Bencolin must solve the grisly murder of the Duc de Saligny at a fashionable Parisian gaming house.

Reviewed on 04 July 2020 by John Cleal

The Measure of Malice

A collection of 14 short stories illustrating how crime fiction reflected – and in some cases predicted – the use of science in crime detection.

Reviewed on 14 March 2020 by John Cleal

Murder in the Mill-Race

When the warden of a children’s home is killed, local police can make no headway in an isolated and self-contained village. Scotland Yard is called in and Chief Inspector Macdonald sent to take over the case.

Reviewed on 18 January 2020 by John Cleal

The Christmas Egg

In a seedy Islington bedsit the body of Princess Olga Karukhin lies as if in state. Her secret trunk has  been wrenched open and its precious contents gone …

Reviewed on 21 December 2019 by Viv Beeby

Death in Captivity

A suspected ‘stool pigeon’ is found dead in an escape tunnel at an officers’ prisoner of war camp in northern Italy. With the invasion imminent, the prisoners plan a mass break-out, but first amateur detective Captain ‘Cuckoo’ Goyles must solve the mystery and find out how much their captors know about the escape plot.

Reviewed on 09 November 2019 by John Cleal

Surfeit of Suspects

When an explosion at a Surrey joinery kills three of the directors, Superintendent Tom Littlejohn of Scotland Yard is called in to investigate.

Reviewed on 28 September 2019 by Chris Roberts

Death Has Deep Roots

A former French Resistance fighter is on trial at the Old Bailey for the murder of her wartime British SOE controller. Her hastily assembled defence team believe her innocence can only be proved by retracing events that happened in Nazi-occupied wartime France.

Reviewed on 10 August 2019 by John Cleal

Smallbone Deceased

The London legal firm of Horniman, Birley and Craine suffers a blow to its reputation when a client is found dead in an office deed box.

Reviewed on 13 July 2019 by Chris Roberts

The Belting Inheritance

The owner of Belting, Lady Wainwright, had four sons, the eldest two of whom, Hugh and David, were reported killed in World War II. However, one day a car arrives at Belting and a man gets out, claiming to be David.

Reviewed on 27 April 2019 by Arnold Taylor

Weekend at Thrackley

Impecunious war hero Jim Henderson is baffled to be invited to a weekend party at the country home of a famous collector of precious stones. Robbery, kidnap and murder follow.

Reviewed on 13 April 2019 by John Cleal

The Colour of Murder

An unhappy young man trapped in a loveless marriage faces the death penalty for a crime he claims not to remember, the brutal beating to death of a girl with whom he had become obsessed.

Reviewed on 30 March 2019 by John Cleal

Excellent Intentions

When the disagreeable Henry Cargate is poisoned, an accusation of murder is brought against one of four people in a position to have committed the crime.

Reviewed on 18 August 2018 by Chris Roberts

Fire in the Thatch

When a man’s body is found in the burned-out shell of a cottage, it is assumed it is that of ex-navy officer Nicholas Vaughan and that his death was due to an accident. His former CO refuses to believe the verdict and Inspector Macdonald is sent to re-examine the case.

Reviewed on 21 July 2018 by John Cleal

Bats in the Belfry

A group of successful professionals jokingly share ideas on how to commit the perfect murder. When one of them disappears under mysterious circumstances Chief Inspector Macdonald is called in.

Reviewed on 09 June 2018 by John Cleal

Foreign Bodies

Sixteen short stories from round the globe written in the first half of the last century with a focus on crime and detectives in the classic tradition.

Reviewed on 03 March 2018 by Chris Roberts

Seven Dead

Small-time crook Ted Lyte stumbles on a locked room containing the bodies of six dead men and one woman, and launches DI Kendall and journalist Thomas Hazeldean into an investigation which has its roots deep in the past.

Reviewed on 03 March 2018 by John Cleal

The End of the Web

When a philandering, middle-aged antiques dealer is found dead next to the body of a beautiful younger girl, his widow asks ex-detective Ed Buchanan, a family friend, to investigate.

Reviewed on 17 February 2018 by John Cleal

The Last Best Friend

Literary dealer Ned Balfour gets a telegram from his friend Sammy Weiss imploring for help with a terrible decision. The next thing Ned hears is that Sammy is dead.

Reviewed on 16 December 2017 by Chris Roberts

Death Makes a Prophet

The cult of Coo, a quasi-Egyptian religion, is riven by jealousies, greed and ambition which lead to murder.

Reviewed on 16 December 2017 by John Cleal

Portrait of a Murderer

Adrian Gray was an unpleasant man, greedy, capricious, bullying. Each of his six children had reason to want him dead. During their annual Christmas visit to his lonely manor house, one of them acts.

Reviewed on 16 December 2017 by John Cleal

The Long Arm of the Law

CWA chairman Martin Edwards introduces 15 short stories by some of the great novelists from the golden age of crime writing.

Reviewed on 11 November 2017 by John Cleal

Continental Crimes

A collection of stories from the golden age of detective fiction, all set in continental Europe.

Reviewed on 11 November 2017 by Sylvia Wilson

Family Matters

Robert Arthur Kewdingham is an eccentric failure of a middle-aged man with an attractive, exotic wife. When both a local doctor and a bohemian bachelor from London are attracted to her, murder ensues.

Reviewed on 02 September 2017 by Sylvia Wilson

The Incredible Crime

Spirited, beautiful, and unconventional Prudence Pinsent, daughter of the Master of a Cambridge college, hears of a drug smuggling ring which implicates a close relative and sets out to discover the identity of the gang who will kill to protect their secret.

Reviewed on 05 August 2017 by John Cleal

The Dead Shall Be Raised and Murder of a Quack

Two stories featuring Scotland Yard Inspector Littlejohn, the first a very cold case which springs to life with the discovery of a body on a lonely moor, and the other the killing of a homeopathic practitioner in a Norfolk village.

Reviewed on 14 April 2017 by John Cleal

The Verdict of Twelve

Twelve members of the jury exercise their highly subjective judgement on a woman accused of poisoning her nephew.

Reviewed on 14 April 2017 by Chris Roberts

The Secret of High Eldersham

The East Anglian village of High Eldersham is unwelcoming to strangers. Several have suffered catastrophic accidents. But when a new landlord is found stabbed in his own pub, Scotland Yard are called in.

Reviewed on 21 January 2017 by John Cleal

Death in the Tunnel

Sir Wilfred Saxonby is found dead on a train, alone in a locked first class carriage with a gun close to his body. There is no reason for suicide and a baffled Inspector Arnold calls on Desmond Merrion – a criminologist and amateur detective – to help him untangle the puzzle.

Reviewed on 24 December 2016 by John Cleal

Passage of Arms

A clerk working on a rubber plantation finds a cache of weapons. Selling them would make him rich, but if he were caught the penalty would be death.

Reviewed on 29 October 2016 by Jim Beaman

The Z Murders

After witnessing an apparently random murder, Richard Temperley sets out to find some answers.

Reviewed on 25 June 2016 by Anthea Hawdon

Thirteen Guests

There are 13 guests staying at Bragley Court for a hunting weekend, and that doesn’t bode well.

Reviewed on 28 May 2016 by Anthea Hawdon

The Hog's Back Mystery

At 8:30 one evening, Dr James Earle goes into his sitting room to read the paper and disappears without trace. The baffled local police call in Scotland Yard and Inspector Joseph French arrives to solve the mystery.

Reviewed on 12 December 2015 by Anthea Hawdon

Death of an Airman

An Australian bishop, on leave in England, decides he must learn to fly to get around his huge bush diocese. When an instructor crashes and is killed he suspects there is more to it than accident and with the help of a local policeman and a Scotland Yard detective, uncovers an international drugs ring.

Reviewed on 21 November 2015 by John Cleal

A Scream in Soho

Detective Inspector Patrick McCarthy is preparing for bed in his Soho flat when he hears a scream. Stumbling through the 1941 blackout, he discovers clear evidence of a murder – but no body.

Reviewed on 18 April 2015 by John Cleal