Our Favourite Crime Novels of 2014
Books, books, books! There are simply not enough shelves on bookcases in the world to hold the mass of wonderful books we love at Dead Good. If you asked us to pick our favourites the list would go on and on.
However, when forced to pick just one top discovery of 2014 (ignoring the fact that Lynsey insisted on picking two), we came up with the following list. Here are our favourite crime novels of 2014!
The Secret Place by Tana French
Chosen by Alison Hennessey
I love Tana French, and her new book was my summer holiday treat earlier this year. An investigation into a murder in a prestigious boarding school, it has shades of The Secret History about it but is pitch perfect on what it feels like to be a teenage girl. Incredibly atmospheric, beautifully written, I am jealous of anyone who hasn’t yet read it.
Eeny Meeny by MJ Arlidge
Chosen by Sarah Ridley
One of my favourite books this year is Eeny Meeny by MJ Arlidge. Taut, fast paced and a brilliant premise, it was very hard to put down. DI Helen Grace is a great character too and I will definitely be reading the rest of the series.
The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith
Chosen by Vicki Watson
One of my absolute favourites this year has to be The Silkworm – the second Cormoran Strike novel from Robert Galbraith aka J K Rowling. Featuring grumpy detective Strike and sassy side-kick Robin Ellacott (think a post-grad Hermione), this was the perfect British crime romp, and, even better, it was set within the darkest and murkiest of worlds… the publishing industry! I can’t wait for the next in the series and the recently announced TV series.
Runner by Patrick Lee
Chosen by Lynsey Dalladay
This book took me completely by surprise. Thrillers aren’t my natural habitat – I tend to lean towards psychological or classic crime – but this book hooked me from the first page and didn’t let go! Runner is pacey, it’s intriguing, it’s intelligent and works so well, asking the age old question of ‘why is she running’ or perhaps more true ‘who is she running from?’ Perfect engrossing fiction, pick this up if you want to be completely overwhelmed.
Apple Tree Yard by Louise Doughty
Chosen by Alison Barrow
This psychological courtroom drama is wicked, saucy and wholly involving. The protagonist, Yvonne, is an enigma, hard to like, steely, forceful, and yet the brilliant way in which Doughty draws us into her story makes the pages turn. We are taken down several red herring plot lines, and nothing is ever quite as it seems. The eye-opening denouement made me gasp out loud. Terrific – my thriller of the year.
Long Way Home by Eva Dolan
Chosen by Rhiannon Griffiths
I genuinely can’t remember the last time I read a debut crime novel as good as Long Way Home. It’s a gritty, gripping, powerful read showcasing intelligent writing and a tight plot, and once I’d picked it up it was torture to put it down again. I’m seriously impressed by the quality of Eva’s work, and now I can’t wait to get my hands on more!
The Lake District Murder by John Bude
Chosen by Indira Birnie
I’m a sucker for classic crime books, especially when they look as beautiful as this one. I read this while on holiday in the Lake District – not far from the towns mentioned in the book – which is a lovely way to read a book and feel completely immersed in it. Originally published in the 1930s, Bude’s novel stands the test of the time well. It’s an excellent police procedural, with themes that are as relevant now as they were then.
Dear Daughter by Elizabeth Little
Chosen by Lynsey Dalladay
I know, I know, I’ve already had a choice but this year has been long and filled with delights and let’s be honest, I make the rules. Dear Daughter stood out for me this year for its fabulous heroine Janie Jenkins. Janie is sassy, stylish and intelligent. This book – think ‘Gone Girl meets Means Girls‘ – is completely gripping and a real murder mystery. Who did kill Janie’s mother? It gave me hours of enjoyment trying to solve this complex puzzle. Brilliant.
What’s been your favourite crime read of 2014? Let us know in the comments below!