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Autumn is always a big season for new mystery novel releases, possibly because it's when many of us head indoors and start thinking of ways to pass the long winter. Regardless of the reason, though, we're excited for these upcoming British mystery and crime releases.
27 Exciting New British Crime Novels for Autumn 2023
The books below are in no particular order.
The Running Grave | Robert Galbraith
In The Running Grave, the seventh entry in JK Rowling's Cormoran Strike series, Strike and Robin are approached by a father whose son Will has run off to Norfolk to join a religious cult. On the surface, the Universal Humanitarian Church seems like a peaceful and innocuous organisation. Beneath the surface, however, dark things are happening – including some unexplained deaths.
In an attempt to rescue Will, it's decided that Robin will infiltrate the cult and live among its members. Unfortunately, she's not fully prepared for the dangers of deep undercover work.
This book will be published on September 26th, 2023, but you can pre-order your copy now.
The Dance of the Dolls | Lucy Ashe
“The Dance of the Dolls” tells of two identical twin ballerinas preparing for a performance of Coppélia at the newly inaugurated Sadler’s Wells Theatre. Olivia is a perfectionist, while Clara is more rebellious.
Clara finds herself entwined in a passionate affair with Nathan, the theatre's pianist. All the while, unbeknownst to Olivia, she has enchanted Samuel, a shy ballet shoemaker's apprentice, who secretly visits the theatre to watch her.
The narrative of Coppélia begins to mirror reality, and not in a good way. Olivia's grows envious of Nathan’s affection for Clara, and Clara realizes the true weight of unwavering adoration. Samuel fantasizes about being acknowledged by Olivia, wondering just how far he'd go for her.
The Lost Girls of Penzance | Sally Rigby
Lauren's attention is captured when she spots a pile of bones glistening in the morning dew. Against the sounds of waves and gulls, she wonders what sort of person met their untimely end in such a lovely, isolated spot?
Although Detective Lauren Pengelly has been with the Penzance police for a while now, she hasn't seen many truly heinous crimes in the small Cornish community. However, the discovery of a woman's bones, with a noticeable fracture in the skull, leaves her bracing herself for the worst.
When it's revealed the bones date back nearly two decades, she feels some relief – but it's short-lived. Soon, she gets another distressing update: a young girl named Isla has mysteriously disappeared from her nursery, despite the place's tight security. Could there be a link between the two incidents? Or is Penzance hiding multiple dark secrets?
Joining forces with Detective Matt Price, her newly assigned deputy, Lauren is convinced Isla’s distant father holds the key to solving the mystery. When yet another child is abducted from her nursery in broad daylight, it becomes clear they're still well off the mark…
Available to pre-order ahead of the October 5th release.
Thursday Murder Club, Book 4 | The Last Devil to Die
It's Christmas time at Cooper's Chase, and it's anything but relaxing. On Boxing Day, a dangerous package is smuggled across the English coast. When it goes missing, chaos is unleashed.
Soon, bodies are piling up – including one close to the Thursday Murder Club members – and they find themselves facing down their deadliest opponents yet.
From a Far & Lovely Country | Alexander Mccall Smith
This is the 24th installment in the enormously popular No 1 Ladies Detective Agency series. The story finds Botswana's leading detective agency bustling with activity. As she deals with a particularly delicate dispute, Mma Ramotswe stands firm in her belief that every problem has a solution waiting to be uncovered.
Pre-order now, available on October 31st.
Murder Most Royal | SJ Bennett
In the third entry in the Her Majesty the Queen Investigates series, Queen Elizabeth II anticipates a traditional Christmas at Sandringham when an alarming find disrupts plans: a severed hand with a familiar signet ring from the St Cyr family, old friends from Ladybridge Hall. While she initially wants to leave the case to the police, media speculation ties her to the crime, especially after an overlooked incident near her residence.
Driven by the media buzz and the police's oversight, Elizabeth, aided by her Assistant Private Secretary, Rozie Oshodi, starts investigating. Amidst the intrigue of the high-profile case in Norfolk, it becomes evident someone harbors a lethal secret. Determinedly, the Queen seeks to unveil it, even if it implies betrayal from someone close.
You can pre-order now ahead of the September 26th release.
The Raging Storm | Ann Cleeves
When renowned adventurer Jem Rosco blows into town amidst a stiff autumn gale, the residents of Greystone, Devon are thrilled to have a celebrity in their midst. As quickly as he arrives, though, he's gone – and it's not long before his lifeless body is discovered in a dinghy anchored off Scully Cove.
For DI Matthew Venn, this is an especially uncomfortable case. Greystone is a place loaded with unhappy childhood memories, and as superstition and rumours mix with facts, he finds his judgment clouded.
The Proof of the Pudding | Rhys Bowen
This book marks the 17th entry in the Royal Spyness series, so if you prefer not to see any spoilers about book 16, skip over the description.
Back at her ancestral estate in Eynsleigh and eagerly anticipating the arrival of her child, Georgie has her hands full. With her new Parisian chef, Pierre, settling in, and Sir Hubert returning from his latest adventure, it feels like the perfect occasion for a celebratory feast.
The evening is a roaring success, especially with the presence of Sir Mortimer Mordred, the renowned Gothic novelist. Drawn to the allure of a nearby Elizabethan manor with its notorious poison garden, he had recently made it his home. Intriguingly, after dinner, Sir Mortimer requests the culinary expertise of Pierre for his own soirée and extends an invitation to Georgie and Darcy.
The subsequent visit to Sir Mortimer's poison garden is as fascinating as his laboratory. However, the festivities take a dark turn when post-feast, several attendees fall mysteriously ill. Tragically, one succumbs to the illness, seemingly poisoned by the garden's treacherous berries. Yet, with everyone sharing the same delicacies, how could only one meet such a fate? Now, Georgie must unravel this enigma, protect Pierre, and safeguard her own standing—all while awaiting the birth of her child!
Available to pre-order ahead of the November 7th release date.
Past Lying | Val McDermid
In April 2020, Edinburgh is gripped by lockdown, yet crime continues. The deserted streets and limited outdoor activity seem an odd backdrop for a dormant case to reignite, but that's exactly what happens when a National Library insider reaches out to DCI Karen Pirie about archives from a late crime writer. What unfolds is a convoluted dance of treachery and vengeance, with more surprises than anyone anticipates.
You can pre-order now for the November 14th release date.
The Peculiar Vanishing Act of Mr. Ralph Herriot | Hannah Ivory
When Imogene Lynch is invited to holiday in Cairo with her cousin, Lady Catherine Lowther, she resists the proposal. She's going through a hard time and she simply wants to be left alone to spend time in her own home. Still, she eventually allows herself to be convinced, only to find herself alone, hot, and in a great deal of danger.
While in Cairo, Imogene runs into Mr. Ralph Herriot, a prominent Cotswold industrialist, and his wife Winnifred. When Ralph disappears, the normally obnoxious Winnifred seeks Imogene's help to find him.
Hercule Poirot's Silent Night | Sophie Hannah
Author Sophie Hannah returns with another authorised “New Hercule Poirot Mystery”.
On the eve of December 19, 1931, Hercule Poirot and Inspector Edward Catchpool are hoping for a calm and serene Christmas break. Unfortunately, they're soon summoned to probe into the baffling homicide of a gentleman in a hospital ward in Norfolk. Edward's mother, Cynthia Catchpool, persuasively invites Poirot to stay at her dilapidated coastal mansion during the holidays, giving them a place to stay while they unravel the mystery.
Looking deeper, Poirot learns that the victim was a much-admired retired post office chief, and his seemingly impossible murder has left the local police baffled. When Cynthia’s associate Arnold is about to be hospitalized in the same ward, his spouse is left panic-stricken, fearing he might be the next target – though she won't reveal why she feels that way.
With no clear culprit or motive, time is running out for Poirot. He has just days to decipher the puzzle, stop any further murders, and return home for Christmas celebrations. At the same time, an unforeseen adversary is plotting a sinister fate for Poirot himself…
You can pre-order now for the October 24th release.
Jane & the Final Mystery | Stephanie Barron
In the final volume of the celebrated mystery series, Jane Austen takes on the role of an unexpected detective.
March 1817: As the chill of winter gives way to spring's warm embrace, Jane Austen finds herself battling a deteriorating health, threatening the completion of her newest novel. Yet, a disturbing revelation by her nephew, Edward, about a tragic event at his alma mater, Winchester College, ignites no sickness can quench.
Arthur Prendergast, an upperclassman at the esteemed all-boys institution, has been found lifeless near the school's premises. This becomes even more alarming when a threatening note, written by young William Heathcote—son of Jane's cherished friend, Elizabeth—is found on his body. Navigating the school's unique culture provides an especially difficult challenge for Jane as she struggles to untangle the mystery and cope with her ill health.
You can pre-order now ahead of the October 24th release date.
Kissing a Killer | Jack Gatland
The previous entry in the DI Declan Walsh series has some major events, so we'll be careful to write this in a way that avoids spoilers.
Declan Walsh is dealing with a lot of changes in his life – but when a City of London art gallery finds one of their latest exhibitors dead, he and his team will take on a case involving brutal vengeance, art looted by the Nazis during WWII, and a long forgotten promise.
As the bodies pile up and the motivation seemingly changes, Declan begins to wonder whether the clues are leading him to the killer – or deliberately pulling him away from the culprit.
The Traitor Among Us | Anne Perry
Assuming her estate doesn't authorise a new author to write within the series, this book will mark the fifth and final entry in Anne Perry's Elena Standish series.
Near the expansive Wyndham Hall, the lifeless body of veteran MI6 agent John Repton is discovered, killed by a single bullet to the heart. This unnerves the intelligence world, as Repton was on a mission to monitor a family with possible fascist links. Elena Standish takes on the case, given her newfound ties to the Wyndhams—her elder sister, Margot, is romantically involved with Lady Wyndham’s sibling.
To discreetly probe into Repton's demise, Elena, alongside her associate James Allenby, manages to get invited to Wyndham Hall. Their mission is twofold: to unearth the true intentions of the household's inhabitants and to shield Margot from her suitor's potentially dangerous family. Yet Elena faces a dilemma. In doing her job, she may cause great pain to her sister.
How will Elena balance her duty to her nation and agency with her devotion to her sister? Can she and Allenby figure out who took their fellow agent's life?
You can pre-order now ahead of the September 12th release date.
A Christmas Vanishing | Anne Perry
Sadly, this is expected to be Anne Perry's final published novel, as she died in April 2023 with a couple of books still in the pipeline.
Mariah Ellison, the astute grandmother of Charlotte Pitt, eagerly accepts an invite from her dear friend Sadie to spend Christmas in their charming village. Yet, the warmth of the invitation chills quickly when Mariah arrives to find Sadie missing and her husband, Barton, dismissively revoking the invitation. Undeterred, Mariah finds lodging with another local friend and begins to investigate Sadie's sudden disappearance.
Questions swirl: Did Sadie elope? Was she abducted? Or did someone wish her harm? However, every lead seems to divulge more about the villagers than Sadie's fate. As Christmas rapidly approaches, Mariah battles against time, striving to unravel the enigma and ensure Sadie's return for the festivities.
You can pre-order now ahead of the November 7th release date.
Dark Harvest | David Gatward
DCI Harry Grimm is fairly well settled into rural Yorkshire these days, and he conveniently dodges thoughts of his future by keeping busy with all sorts of unpleasant crimes. Now, he's been called to a crime scene where the body is missing both hands – a man soon identified as a city property developer who's recently relocated to the countryside.
The dead man managed to anger more than a few locals during his brief time in the area, so Grimm and his team will have no shortage of suspects. Will it prevent him from being able to get justice for the unpleasant victim?
Available for pre-order ahead of the November 30th release date.
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Dead on Target | RW Green & MC Beaton
As many will know, MC Beaton died back in 2019, but not before entrusting her much-loved Agatha Raisin and Hamish Macbeth series to a close friend. They worked together on some of her final works and today, he continues to create new books in both worlds.
Agatha Raisin's tranquil day at the village fete takes a dark twist when she stumbles upon the body of a prominent landowner, ominously placed in the woods with an arrow lodged in his chest and his trousers embarrassingly lowered.
DCI Wilkes chalks up the death as an unfortunate accident, speculating the landowner was unintentionally struck by an arrow from a nearby archery showcase. Agatha senses something far more sinister. Her suspicions take an unsettling turn when, to her astonishment, Wilkes comes around to her way of thinking—pointing to her as the prime suspect.
Undeterred and intent on vindicating herself, Agatha embarks on her own investigation. Along the way, she encounters a feuding family, a crafty mobster, and a murderer who seems all too keen on making Agatha their next target…
Available to pre-order ahead of the September 19th publication date.
Murder By Invitation Only | Colleen Cambridge
This novel is the third book in the Phyllida Bright Mystery series, and it sees a group of mystery lovers brought to an English manor for a murder mystery party game.
Newcomers Mr. and Mrs. Wokesley host an murder mystery party, and Phyllida assists their housekeeper as preparations begin. Mr. Wokesley plays the “victim”, but as the game draws to an end, they find he's truly dead!
With Inspector Cork unavailable, Phyllida leads the investigation, interviewing the game's participants with a local officer. Though initially, there appears to be no clear motive, it's not long before Phyllida realises everyone at the party had good reason to want Mr. Wokesley dead.
You can pre-order now for the September 26th release.
The Mystery Guest | Nita Prose
Molly Gray stands apart from the rest. With an unmatched passion for cleanliness and impeccable manners, she's climbed the hierarchy of the prestigious five-star Regency Grand Hotel, eventually taking on the esteemed position of Head Maid. However, just as she's basking in her hard-earned success, the renowned mystery writer, J. D. Grimthorpe, meets a grim fate right on the hotel's tearoom floor.
Molly's old adversary, Detective Stark, arrives to investigate, and it's immediately clear that Grimthorpe's end was no accident. The hotel is rife with potential suspects. Was it the eager newbie, Lily? Perhaps Serena, the author’s trusted secretary? Even Mr. Preston, the cherished doorman, isn't above suspicion.
Grimthorpe's untimely demise looms large, threatening to tarnish the hotel's impeccable reputation. Molly realises she's uniquely positioned to decipher the identity of the killer, given her hidden history with Grimthorpe. Retracing her steps to the enigmatic Grimthorpe mansion, she'll revisit her past – the life she led when she worked alongside her late beloved Gran. The clock is ticking, and Molly knows all too well that secrets are like restless ghosts—they never remain hidden for long.
Available to pre-order ahead of the November 28th release.
The Archive | Alex Scarrow
Though no description is available at this time, this will be the 9th entry in the popular DCI Boyd crime series. Set in and around the town of Hastings in southern England, the series follows the work of a troubled officer who's moved to the coast in hopes to start a new, quieter chapter in his life. It doesn't quite work out.
Available for pre-order ahead of the November 1st release date.
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Murder in Drury Lane | Vanessa Riley
This Regency era mystery is sure to appeal to many Bridgerton fans, as it offers a look at the roles of Black British and mixed race people during a time when the UK was not very racially diverse. The series follows Lady Abigail Worthing, a woman pushed into a marriage of convenience that, while not offering much in the way of romantic satisfaction, does come with some perks.
She takes respite in her box at the Drury Lane Theater – until a June evening when a blood curdling scream comes from the stage. A man has been found dead in the prop room, and Abigail won't be able to resist the puzzle this murder has put in front of her.
Available for pre-order ahead of the October 24th release date.
Murder in Autumn | Lesley Cookman
This book represents the 24th entry in Cookman's Libby Sarjeant series, and it finds Libby proudly hosting a new production of Much Ado About Nothing. Unfortunately, an old acquaintance of Libby's is less than pleased about the production, channeling her emotions into stirring up discontent around Steeple Martin.
When a body is subsequently found in the woodlands near a grand estate, the community is shocked – and it only gets worse as local secrets begin bubbling to the surface.
A Polluted Font | Mel Starr
This is book #16 in the Hugh De Singleton series, in which we follow the adventures of a young surgeon in medieval Oxford. In this outing, Hugh begins to investigate the mystery of a locked font that's gone dry, only to happen upon the body of Father Robert.
At the same time, parliament has passed a poll tax that would tax all people older than 14 equally. This scramble for funds fuels desperation and more than a few unethical acts. Could there be a relationship between these two things?
Available for pre-order ahead of the October 3rd release.
The Christmas Appeal | Janice Hallett
Christmas is in the air in Lower Lockwood, and the Fairway Players are busy preparing their holiday rendition of Jack and the Beanstalk, aiming to collect funds for the church's new roof. Despite the season and unity of purpose, the festive spirit is in short supply among the theater aficionados, with simmering feuds, concerns over a possibly hazardous beanstalk, and a few members consistently missing in action.
Then, there's the alarming discovery of a lifeless body on the stage. Lawyers Femi and Charlotte will sift through festive correspondences, scrutinize emails, and delve into official records as they race against time to untangle the mystery.
Available for pre-order ahead of the October 24th release.
a Cold highland Wind | Tasha Alexander
This book marks the 17th entry in the Lady Emily Mysteries series. In the balmy summer of 1905, Lady Emily, her husband Colin Hargreaves, and their trio of sons look forward to a family getaway at Cairnfarn Castle, the grand Scottish residence of a dear friend.
The lively festivities are marred when the duke's gamekeeper, the dashing Angus Sinclair, is discovered dead beside the loch. Angus's life was complicated: he left one woman heartbroken in Edinburgh, another smitten with his charm, and there's a nearby farmer who viewed him as romantic competition – but the runic stone placed on Sinclair's brow adds another layer to the mystery.
A potential connection emerges from the tale of Lady MacAllister, the Laird of Cairnfarn Castle's wife, from 1676. Widowed, she was ousted from her abode, finding solace only in her Moorish handmaiden. The duo stealthily rescued her cherished collection of peculiar books. However, when suspicious locals stumbled upon a magical doll and a daisy wheel in her secluded dwelling, accusations of witchcraft arose.
Fast forward centuries, and Lady Emily strives to uncover the connection between Lady MacAllister's chilling witch trial and Sinclair's savage demise.
Available to pre-order ahead of the October 3rd release.
A Dead Man Walking | JD Kirk
On a chilling Halloween night, an aged billionaire is found dead in the locked study of his majestic Highland residence. DCI Jack Logan and his squad are in a race against the rapidly deteriorating weather to reach the crime scene.
Within the confines of the grand house, Jack is confronted with a plethora of suspects. Trapped by the most severe tempest in years, and with a TV paranormal investigation team making his work more challenging, Jack realizes he'll have to rely on fundamental detective techniques.
However, the mansion's inhabitants – both living and spectral – aren’t about to give him a peaceful moment to unravel the mystery.
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Death in Westminster | Emily Organ
In the fifth entry in the Augusta Peel 1920s mysteries, Augusta finds herself puzzled by a strange customer in her bookshop. Later, the encounter leads to an attack in the Westminster Abbey cloisters, and she finds herself deeply entangled in a homicide investigation.
Together, Augusta and Scotland Yard detective Philip Fisher follow a trail of clues that leads them into the long shadows of the Great War.
Available to pre-order ahead of the September 30th release.
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Audible | Paperback | Bookshop.org (supports independent bookshops