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Debuts to watch out for in 2017

New year, new beginnings – and the perfect time to discover a new author!

We’ve taken a look into the year ahead at some of the fresh new voices turning their hands to crime – and we could not be more excited about what’s in store. Whether you’re a fan of psychological suspense, detective fiction or good old thrillers, translated crime, the classics or books inspired by real life mysteries, there’s something here that will suit everyone’s tastes.

Which will you be picking up?

The hottest debut crime novels 2017:


debut crime novels 2017Sirens by Joseph Knox – 12 January

Sirens is the brooding, atmospheric debut by Joseph Knox and the first to star disgraced detective Aidan Watts. This is a dark, gritty book, dubbed ‘a powerhouse of noir’ by none other than Val McDermid – and we guarantee it’s one everyone will be talking about in 2017. Read the first chapter here.

debut crime novels 2017Little Deaths by Emma Flint – 12 January

Emma Flint’s first novel takes a haunting look at morality, obsession, good and evil. Inspired by a true story, it tells the heart-breaking tale of a mother who wakes to find her two small children have gone missing. With Little Deaths you’ll find yourself reading long into the night, as you’ll be gripped from page one.

debut crime novels 2017The Dry by Jane Harper – 12 January

This tense, evocative mystery transports us to Australia, where a small town is hiding big secrets. Policeman Aaron Falk is probing into the death of a man who turned his gun on himself after killing his wife and child – but the facts of the case don’t add up. It’s a beautifully crafted story that’s full of suspense and will keep you guessing until the very end.

debut crime novels 2017The River at Night by Erica Ferencik – 12 January

In A Dark, Dark Wood meets Deliverance in The River at Night, Erica Ferencik’s first thriller, where the adventure of a lifetime becomes a fight to stay alive. The book takes the trend of psychological, female-driven thrillers and turns it on its head to create a true page turner.

debut crime novels 2017The Book of Mirrors by E O Chirovici – 26 January

Can you really trust your own memories? That’s the question at the heart of this intelligent, clever, unmissable thriller – Chirovici’s first written in English. It’s an addictive read that’s packed with twists and turns – and once you think you’ve figured out the solution you’ll discover something new that will blow your theory out of the water. Read the first chapter here.


debut crime novels 2017Blue Light Yokohama by Nicolás Obregón – 2 February

This hauntingly atmospheric debut thriller, inspired by a real life murder that remains unsolved sixteen years on, introduces Inspector Kosuke Iwata of Tokyo homicide department – a detective with a dark past and an uncertain future. It’s a tense, mysterious novel with an addictive edge, and we think this young writer is set to be a star.

debut crime novels 2017My Sister’s Bones by Nuala Ellwood – 9 February

Nuala Ellwood’s debut is so wonderfully twisty that it will keep you guessing to the very end. It’s a well-balanced, brilliantly written psychological thriller with characters that are easy to connect with and deliciously dark intrigue at every turn. Read the first chapter here.

debut crime novels 2017Ragdoll by Daniel Cole – 23 February

Ragdoll, the first book in an exciting new series featuring Detectives William Wolf and Emily Baxter, is a cat-and-mouse thriller that reads like a dark and gruesome episode of Luther. It’s fast-paced and gritty, with a clever plot and inventive murders – and it’s definitely one to watch.


debut crime novels 2017Say Nothing by Brad Parks – 2 March

Say Nothing is a powerful, tense UK debut – the sort of book that grabs you and refuses to let go. A legal thriller injected with a dose of domestic suspense, it follows the story of a Judge and his wife who are plunged into unimaginable horror when their children are taken hostage to ensure the Judge’s silence in an upcoming case.


debut crime novels 2017Butterfly on the Storm by Walter Lucius – 6 April

This fast-paced thriller is the first instalment in Dutch author Walter Lucius’s Heartland Trilogy and sees a seemingly ordinary hit-and-run lead to the unravelling of a world of child trafficking and power abuse. Perfect for fans of Stieg Larsson, it tells a tale of lost loves and ideals and introduces a brilliant new voice in European crime fiction.

debut crime novels 2017A Dangerous Crossing by Rachel Rhys – 6 April

Rachel Rhys’s stunning, atmospheric novel tells the story of a young woman’s life-changing journey on a glamorous cruise liner to Australia on the brink of the Second World War. Written in the tradition of classic crime but with a contemporary twist, there’s little doubt that Rhys is an expert storyteller.

debut crime novels 2017My Sister by Michelle Adams – 20 April

My Sister is an intimate tale of family secrets with a twisty plot and a unique voice. Suspenseful and shocking, it’s guaranteed to chill you to the bone. It tells the story of Irini, who was given away aged three, while her volatile, destructive sister was kept within the family. Twenty years later, it’s time to find out why.


debut crime novels 2017See What I Have Done by Sarah Schmidt – 2 May

This is a particularly chilling debut that reimagines one of the most notorious unsolved mysteries – the Lizzie Borden axe murders. It’s an incredibly well-crafted, atmospheric novel with believable characters and a fascinating, macabre backstory. We promise it’s one you’ll want to savour.

debut crime novels 2017What Alice Knew by T A Cotterell – 4 May

T A Cotterell’s addictive debut is perfect for fans of tense, thought-provoking novels like Liane Moriarty’s The Husband’s Secret and Clare Mackintosh’s I Let You Go. The premise is intriguing and relatable, making you question what you would do in the same situation. We couldn’t put it down.


debut crime novels 2017You Don’t Know Me by Imran Mahmood – 1 June

You Don’t Know Me, the first book by a criminal defence barrister with over twenty years’ experience, tells a powerful, gripping story in a stunning, authentic voice. Before the Closing Speeches, a young defendant on trial for murder sacks his lawyer and gives his own defence. As we listen to his story, we must decide: guilty or not guilty?


debut crime novels 2017Here and Gone by Haylen Beck – 13 July

Dark secrets and a breathtaking race to reveal the truth lie at the heart of this tense, enthralling thriller about a mother’s desperate fight to recover her stolen children from corrupt authorities. It’s already been dubbed one of the best debuts of the year by Harlan Coben – and we think you’re going to love it.

debut crime novels 2017Final Girls by Riley Sager – 27 July

Final Girls is an engrossing, unsettling, twisty psychological thriller perfect for fans of Julia Heaberlin’s Black-Eyed Susans. This one is guaranteed to keep you balancing precariously on the edge of your seat – it’s a roller coaster of a read and truly gripping from start to finish. Read the first chapter here.

Which are you most looking forward to? Let us know in the comments below!


    Thanks for the list, quite a few that I like the sound of, my TBR pile is going to be getting bigger.

    They all sound great but I’m particularly looking forward to Daniela Cole’s “Ragdoll” – roll on February!

    Great list…looking forward to their 2017 arrival

    I like the promise of What Alice Knew by T A Cotterell as being like Claire Mackintosh which was brilliant and also Here and Gone by Haylen Beck because it is recommended by Harlan Coben which sounds like a female version of Harlan Coben aka haylen beck maybe

    I’m looking forward to the dry as I’ve read great reviews on Australian blogs about the book. I’ve also been given a proof copy of sirens, which sounds good.

    I like the sound of the book of mirror’s, my sisters bones although I could read them all, all sound good.

    Wow, thanks for that list. I was putting together a list of 2017 debut novels to look forward to and only found 3 or 4 by myself but now I’ve added almost every book from your list, they all sound really interesting!

    “Ragdoll”, “The Book of Mirrors” and “Final Girls” had already been on mine but “Sirens”, “The Dry” or “Say Nothing” sound really good, too!

    I’m also pretty excited about “You don’t know me” now, the concept sounds really interesting!

    I like the sound of My Sister by Michelle Adams and Little Deaths by Emma Flint

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