My 2021 A-Z Of Crimewriters (Includes my Book of the Year)

At the end of last year, I had the idea to try and read the alphabet in authors. As the thought grew, I decided it would be fun if they were all crime writers. A quick internet search confirmed that it was possible and thus began my journey.

I felt that this would give me the opportunity to read authors I had wanted to read for while, re-visit authors I had enjoyed before and discover new authors by way of what letter their surname began. I won’t go through the full list here, but if you visit my Reading List page, you will see the full list. I included a Mc at the end as this gave me the chance to read an author I admire as well as reading my now traditional end of year festive book.

I enjoyed the vast majority of the books I read, although there were a few disappointments too. I won’t dwell on these as it’s all a matter of personal taste at the end of the day and going by some of the reviews, there are plenty who would disagree.

Out of the 27 books on the alphabet list, I gave 5 of them the full 5 star rating of which I will now choose my book of the year –

1 – Fifty Fifty by Steve Cavanagh

2 – Threat by Hugh Fraser

3 – Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz

4 – The Darkness by Ragnar Jonasson

5 – A Fine House In Trinity by Lesley Kelly

I’m not normally a fan of American based crime, but Fifty Fifty was an exception and I was hooked on this one from the start right until the end. Hugh Fraser has previously been one my books of the year, and the follow up novel was just as good as the first. Anthony Horowitz is simply a genius and I was bowled over by this ‘book within a book’ story. The Darkness illustrated everything that is great in Icelandic and Scandinavian crime and I found the lead character refreshing. Finally, Lesley Kelly managed to produce a book that felt like Ian Rankin and Irvine Welsh were writing together.

In the end, I have gone with Steve Cavanagh’s Fifty Fifty. I’ve been a fan of the Two Crimewriters and a Microphone podcast for years and this was my first novel of his that I have read. Getting so many plaudits, it’s the novel which may have finally given him the recognition he deserves. I already own more of his novels which I will dip into next year. The only downside is that his time is now limited to do the podcast – I’ll just have to go back and listen to the old ones and hope that he makes some more in the future…

I hope you enjoyed this blog and my list. It was written on 31/12/21 which is also publication day for a new charity anthology called Dark Paris, which includes my crime story Nothing As It Seems. If you fancy reading some Parisian dark stories, please order a copy – it’s all for a good cause. The link is in the Books tab of this website.

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