Mark Billingham's Newsletter…
I am suitably chastened as I realise that it’s been almost a year since I made your day/pestered you/clogged up your inbox* with one of these things. A whole year! Well, thank heavens that nothing major has happened in the world news-wise in that time. I mean, nobody’s done anything silly, have they? Good. So, safe in the knowledge that the world’s every bit as tolerant and forward-thinking as it was a year ago, I feel ready and able to share a few newsworthy bits and bobs, and if some of them sound a little far-fetched, just think of this as my first alt-newsletter…
* This is not a euphemism.
Right then, here are the headlines…
* New books a go-go. Hardbacks. Paperbacks. All sorts.
* New TV adaptation on the way.
* Podcast Pandemonium.
* Gobbing off on the road.
* Sean Spicer Says I Am Best Crime-Writer In The World. Oh, wait…
One of the above headlines may not be entirely true…
LOVE LIKE BLOOD
The brand spanking new Tom Thorne novel, will be published in the UK by Little, Brown on June 1st and in the US by Grove Atlantic on June 20th. After a few adventures out of town, Tom is back in London, working with Nicola Tanner – who first appeared in Die Of Shame – to track down those responsible for a series of honour killings. This is quite a dark one and I can honestly say that I have never felt so angry writing and researching a book as I did this time round. Of course, there are always one or two readers who get angry reading the books, but let’s not dwell on that. Anyway, here’s the blurb:
A BLOODY MESSAGE
As DI Nicola Tanner investigates what appears to be a series of organised killings, her partner Susan is brutally murdered, leaving the detective bereft, and vengeful.
A POWERFUL ALLY
Taken off the case, Tanner enlists the help of DI Tom Thorne to pursue a pair of ruthless killers and the broker handing out the deadly contracts.
A CONSPIRACY OF SILENCE
As the killers target their latest victim, Thorne takes the biggest risk of his career and is drawn into a horrifying and disturbing world in which families will do anything to protect their honour.
DIE OF SHAME
And leaping, fully-formed in all its fun-sized glory on to UK bookshelves in but a matter of weeks will be Die Of Shame, published in paperback on March 23rd. For those who didn’t buy this when it came out in hardback last year (what’s WRONG with you people?) this one is a standalone, though both Tom Thorne and Phil Hendricks make cuddlesome cameo appearances. What’s this one about, I hear you ask? Go on, say it out loud…
Every Monday evening, six people gather in a smart North London house to talk about addiction. There they share their deepest secrets: stories of lies, regret, and above all, shame.
Then one of them is killed - and it's clear one of the circle was responsible.Detective Inspector Nicola Tanner quickly finds her investigation hampered by the strict confidentiality that binds these people and their therapist together.
So what could be shameful enough to cost someone their life? And how do you find the truth when denial and deception are second nature to all of your suspects?
Rush of Blood
And making up this quartet of crimey loveliness is Rush Of Blood, which has just been published for the first time in the US by Grove Atlantic. Yes, it’s out now! This is another standalone, and only yesterday the New York Times responded to the paper bag full of cash I left in a toilet cubicle at Grand Central Station by saying: “Its maddening, the way Billingham keeps us in suspense, cringing from each character while keeping watch as if our own lives depended on it— but we wouldn’t want it any other way.” That’s twenty-seven dollars well spent, I reckon.
In The Dark – THE TV SERIES
The series, which is actually based on two books – In The Dark and Time Of Death – has now been filmed and will be broadcast on BBC1 later this year. The BBC is keeping transmission dates close to its chest, but I will be shouting from the rooftops as soon as I know. In The Dark will focus on the character of Helen Weeks, who is brilliantly played by MyAnna Buring. Here is a first look at her in the role:
A STAB In The Dark
Las year I was delighted to host a series of podcasts highlighting the very best crime fiction on the page and on the screen. A Stab In The Dark featured interviews with some amazing writers and producers, including Lee Child, Val McDermid, Patricia Cornwell and Michael Connelly as well as some fantastic actors such as Kris Marshall from Death In Paradise, Colin Buchanan from Dalziell & Pascoe and David Morrissey who played Tom Thorne so brilliantly in the TV adaptations of Sleepyhead and Scaredy Cat. We will be making some new episodes very soon, but meanwhile check out some of the existing eps, which you can download direct from UKTV or via iTunes.
There will be a GOOD DEAL of tarting about from June onwards, when I go on the road to promote Love Like Blood. A full itinerary is currently being put together and will be up on the website as soon as it is finished, but here are some of the events already finalised. Come and say hello. There will be saucy stories, cheap jokes and I will dance for cash.
* March 18th. Aye Write Festival, Glasgow.
* April 7-9th. The Laugharne Weekend.
* April 28-30th. Chipping Norton Literary Festival.
* May 1st. Books By The Beach, Scarborough.
* May 11th. Chipping Campden LitFest Book Group.
* June 7th. Toppings, Bath. With Chris Brookmyre.
* July 8th. Coles, Bicester, with Chris Brookmyre.
* June 12thth. Waterstones, Liverpool One.
* June 14thth. Waterstones, Deansgate, Manchester.
* June 16thth. Borders Book Festival, Melrose.
* June 19thth. Toppings Bookshop, Ely.
* July 19-23rd. Harrogate Crime Writers Festival
* August 18-22nd. St Hilda’s Mystery & Crime Conference.
* September 8-10th. Bloody Scotland.
* September 16thth. Noirwich.
* October 11-15th. Bouchercon, World Mystery Convention, Toronto.
Please check the NEWS page of the website for full details of times, addresses, other authors appearing, contact details for tickets, all that jazz.
OK, I’ve wasted QUITE enough of your time already…
DON’T BE A STRANGER
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