Crime fiction debuts to look out for in (January) 2016

Since I started my blog and have been lucky enough to receive review copies of books from publishers the number of debuts I’ve read has increased dramatically. Prior to blogging I was more conservative with my reading, mostly sticking to series by a group of favourite authors and only occasionally taking a risk on a name I hadn’t come across before.

Conversely it’s inevitable that publishers are keen to promote debuts where the new author doesn’t have an existing fan base which means that the buzz on social media and the arrivals through my letterbox are often focussed on authors who are being published  for the first time or are new to the genre.

So following the popularity of last year’s debuts post I have taken this task much more seriously and have a longer list of crime fiction debuts that I shall be looking out for. Clearly there will be more detail available for those books being published earlier in the year and the first instalment is for January.

14 January 2016

Rebound by Aga Lesiewicz (from Pan Macmillan)

Aga Lesiewicz is a former TV producer and director. She came to England to study English literature but, having received her degree, abandoned the academic world and spent years working in radio and television. A knee injury led to a change in her career and prompted her to write ‘Rebound’.

The book is a psychological thriller told in the first person by Anna, a thirty-something woman with a successful career in the media. A chance encounter with a man on Hampstead Heath leads to a (potentially) unhealthy obsession. The blurb makes this sound similar to some of the standalones written by Nicci French and the naming of Anna’s dog after a chocolate bar earns this extra brownie points! For a review see Shots.

Catch-up with Aga directly on twitter – @Aga_Lesiewicz

Beside Myself by Ann Morgan (from Bloomsbury Circus)

Ann Morgan isn’t new to this writing lark, her endeavours to read her way around all the globe’s 196 independent countries, sampling one book from every nation, were published in “Reading the World: Confessions of a Literary Explorer” in 2015 but Beside Myself is her first novel.

A psychological thriller, Beside Myself features identical twins Helen and Ellie who decide to swap places for a day. Well it was supposed to be for just one day… The lives of the twins take very different courses, prompting the reader to consider issues of identity and free-will. This sounds like a sinister but compelling read. You can read a review on NeverImitate.

You can find Ann on twitter – @A_B_Morgan

81GcmaRJypLThe Widow by Fiona Barton (from Bantam Press)

This is a title that has generated quite a lot of social media buzz ahead of its launch. Fiona Barton is an ex-journalist and has also trained journalists herself, so I look forward to a high quality of writing!! It also seem fair to anticipate an insight into the interaction between journalists and those who are associated, directly or indirectly, with a crime which attracts a high level of media attention.

Interestingly this explores an issue that has intrigued me – the woman who stands by a man accused of horrific crimes – exploring this in a fictional environment. Written from three perspectives this sounds like an intriguing read.

There are already a few reviews out there for this title – see Little Bookness Lane and Pam Reader.

You can find Fiona on twitter @figbarton.

28 January 2016

Without Trace By Simon Booker (from twenty7)

Simon Booker is a screenwriter with an impressive set of credits to his name including The Inspector Lynley Mysteries and The Mrs Bradley Mysteries for BBC1 and ITV thrillers The Blind Date and The Stepfather. In the past I would never have noticed the background of an author but since blogging and meeting authors in person it’s been interesting to see the different walks of life from which they’re drawn. There must be a blog post lurking in there somewhere!

The book is billed as a psychological thriller and features journalist (and single mother) Morgan Vine. When her old flame is released from prison after she helps him win an appeal he has nowhere to turn but to Morgan herself. The subsequent disappearance of her daughter makes her question her actions and doubt her faith in her childhood friend. I enjoy books that take the ‘journalistic’ route to investigating a crime, so this is high on my TBR pile.

As with all the debuts being published by twenty7 Simon’s book will be available in ebook before the paperback publication (in June).

Simon is also on twitter – @simonbooker


More months to be added!

So are there any debuts you’ve heard about that you are looking forward to reading? What would your tips be for new authors to look out for in 2016?


  1. I’m looking forward to Rain Dogs by Adrian McKinty; and to A Woman Much Missed: A Commissario Soneri Investigation by Valerio Varesi, but not sure when they will be released.

  2. I’ve just read Beside Myself and hope to be posting a review soon, in the New Year. Also on my TBR pile for 2016 – although now that I think about it, not sure if the release date is in January – Dolores Redondo: The Invisible Guardian, a newly-translated Spanish writer, with a strange story set in the Pyrenees. Also Youth by Paolo Sorrentino, set in a spa town in the Swiss Alps (I can never resist that setting) – based I think on a film – about two octogenerian men trying to recapture their youth.

  3. These all look most intriguing. I’m going to reduce my TBR pile quickly to justify buying any more books. I’m looking forward to Painkiller by Nev Fountain, who’s a funny guy (he writes for Dead Ringers and Private Eye) but his novel is a psychological thriller.

    1. My TBR is too big, however much I try to prune it. We’ve chatted to Nev at some length at crime fiction events but never read anything by him – will be interested to see what you think!

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