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Black Summer

What a year Mike Craven has had!  From Cumbria Life Author of the Year at the start of 2019 to winner of the CWA Gold Dagger a few weeks ago for The Puppet Show, he’s had quite a journey. You may have caught him at CrimeFest, Harrogate, Bloody Scotland . . . or at a host of bookshop evenings or other regional crime events. And he shows no sign of slowing down – he’s just handed in book four, even though we haven’t quite got around to publishing book three yet (The Curator comes out in June 2020), and already he’s talking about what is coming after that.  It’s exhausting!

So if you haven’t been introduced to the charismatic Washington Poe and his very good friend Tilly Bradshaw of the National Crime Unit, you are in for a treat. We publish the paperback of Black Summer this December and you can come to the series fresh from here . . . but if you haven’t read The Puppet Show, you can always spoil yourself and read that first before launching into Poe and Tilly’s next outing.

A startling opening chapter leads us into a convoluted murder case featuring a psychotic chef, an elusive young woman, and puts the impossible question to the reader: how can a person be both alive and dead at the same time?

Mike loves puzzles and playing with your mind and just when you think you have a handle on what’s going on he’ll pull the rug out from under you. And, as in The Puppet Show, the one thing that grounds this rollercoaster ride of a novel is the brilliantly realised relationship between the difficult, cynical and stubborn Washington Poe and his straight-talking sidekick, Tilly.

Read Black Summer this Christmas – and then you’ll understand what all the fuss is about!

Krystyna Green