Winter 1963: two children have disappeared off the streets of Manchester; the murderous careers of Myra Hindley and Ian Brady have begun. On a freezing day in December, another child goes missing: thirteen-year-old Alison Carter vanishes from her town, an insular community that distrusts the outside world. For the young George Bennett, a newly promoted inspector, it is the beginning of his most difficult and harrowing case: a murder with no body, an investigation with more dead ends and closed faces than he'd have found in the anonymity of the inner city, and an outcome which reverberates through the years. Decades later he finally tells his story to journalist Catherine Heathcote, but just when the book is poised for publication, Bennett unaccountably tries to pull the plug. He has new information which he refuses to divulge, new information that threatens the very foundations of his existence. Catherine is forced to re-investigate the past, with results that turn the world upside down. A Greek tragedy in modern England, Val McDermid's A Place of Execution is a taut psychological thriller that explores, exposes and explodes the border between reality and illusion in a multi-layered narrative that turns expectations on their head and reminds us that what we know is what we do not know. A Place of Execution is winner of the 2000 Los Angeles Times Book Prize and a 2001 Edgar Award Nominee for Best Novel.
Available in ebook for the first time ever, this duo of classic short stories by Sunday Times number one bestseller, Val McDermid - Driving a Hard Bargain, The Road & the Miles to Dundee - brings back the popular Kate Brannigan and shows a different side of her writing. In Driving a Hard Bargain, PI Kate Brannigan investigates a car theft with a twist. In The Road & the Miles to Dundee, a moving father-daughter relationship is remembered through Scottish songs.
Many aspects of British detective fiction are intriguingly different from the American detective fiction. And, confusingly, many of the British women detectives who have made it to American television are far from typical of the latest women detectives. This work is a study of British detective fiction with female protagonists written by women. Authors included are P.D. James, Jennie Melville, Liza Cody, Val McDermid, Joan Smith and Susan Moody. Special attention is paid to the evolution of the British female sleuth from the 1960s to the year 2000, particularly the 1980s, and how this shaped and altered detective fiction. Also discussed is the effect of the British judicial system and gun laws on detective fiction and real life, the types of crimes women detectives usually investigate, why certain directions have been taken and which ones may be taken in the future, issues being raised by the authors, and new women authors of detective fiction with female protagonists.