Crime fiction debuts to look out for in February 2016

This look at forthcoming debuts seems to work well as a monthly collection so here we are looking forward to books being published in February 2016. For a list of debuts in January see here.

11 February 2016

51wdK96oR+LStasi Child by David Young (from twenty7)

This is the publication date for the paperback version of this historical thriller, an ebook version having been released in October 2015.

Set in East Berlin in 1975, the main protagonist, and the investigator, is Oberleutnant Karin Müller, the only female head of a murder squad in the Deutsche Demokratische Republic. She is called to investigate the body of a young girl who has been discovered at the foot of the infamous Wall. Evoking the period and the Cold War atmosphere this is a great novel for anyone enjoying Deutschland 83.

You can read my review here. You can catch up with David on Twitter @djy_writer

51rlVozsupLBehind Closed Doors by B A Paris (from MIRA)

The shout line for the debut from this Franco-Irish author is “Sometimes, the perfect marriage is the perfect lie”. This sets the scene for a psychological thriller exploring a flawed relationship.

Jack and Grace seem to be the perfect couple but behind the facade lies a different story. Told by alternating between the present and the past, the early reviews of this suggest that BA Paris has written a gripping and disturbing debut portraying a poisonous relationship.

Follow B A on Twitter @BAParisAuthor

15 February 2016

41kNvwMBZCLJihadi: A Love Story by Yusuf Toropov (from Orenda Books)

An American Muslim living in Northern Ireland, although the author or co-author of a number of nonfiction books as well as writing plays, this is Toropov’s debut novel.

A former intelligence agent stands accused of terrorism, held without charge in a secret overseas prison. His memoir is in the hands of a brilliant but erratic psychologist whose annotations paint a much darker picture. As the story unravels, we are forced to assess the truth for ourselves, and decide not only what really happened on one fateful overseas assignment but who is the real terrorist. Peopled by a diverse and unforgettable cast of characters, whose reliability as narrators is always questioned, and with a multi-layered plot heaving with unexpected and often shocking developments.

Yusuf tweets @LiteraryStriver

25 February 2016

91YMbqYiNfLThe Butcher’s Hook by Janet Ellis (from Two Roads)

Yes, it’s that Janet Ellis, and this debut is attracting a lot of attention, particularly as it sounds darker than many people would have imagined a former Blue Peter presenter would have written. Or perhaps that’s the explanation… One piece of information I have been able to glean is that Janet recently attended the ‘Curtis Brown Creative’ writing school.

There does seem to be some difference of opinion on whether this is crime fiction or not. It is definitely historical – set in 1763 and the main character is 19 year-old Anne Jacob. A coming-of-age novel with a strong female lead I have seen this described as both violent and bawdy.

You can find Janet on Twitter @missjanetellis. If you’re interested in buying a copy you might be interested to know that Goldsboro Books have a limited edition available.

Crime fiction debuts seem to be a bit thin on the ground in February – let me know if there are any I’ve missed.

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13 comments

  1. I really enjoyed the David Young book – fits in well with the Deutschland 83 series currently on TV. I’m not sure if the Janet Ellis book sounds sufficiently crimey for me, but I’m sure people will be curious to see what it’s about.
    One debut I am looking forward to is Raphael Montes (a young Brazilian writer) – well, it’s not his first novel, but the first to be translated into English, called ‘Perfect Days’ – it’s a sort of modern take on Fowler’s The Collector, but also strangely funny. Coming out from Vintage on 18th Feb in e-book and hardback.

    1. That Cold War / East-West divide does seem to have suddenly become a popular setting.
      Will have a look for info on the Raphael Montes (hard to know how to define a debut when things are translated out of order).

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