Book talk: Novels across the genres

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This week Michael Popple reviews three exciting new novels from across the genres.

Murder Mile by Lynda La Plante

Zaffre, $32.99

London 1979: Detective Sergeant Jane Tennison has been posted to Peckham and must investigate a series of brutal murders plaguing the area. Hunting for a deranged killer, Tennison finds her investigation hampered by inherent police sexism, homophobia and corruption.

This is the fourth book in La Plante’s Jane Tennison series, which serves as a prequel series to Prime Suspect. Murder Mile contains an intense murder mystery that makes full use of its historical setting, including the prevailing police attitudes of the time. This is an excellent new addition to the series and readers will love the chilling antagonist and dark ending.

Salvation by Peter F. Hamilton

Macmillan, $32.99

In 2204, human explorers find an alien shipwreck on a far-off planet, filled with a sinister cargo. An expedition made up of experienced and capable individuals is sent to investigate, but what they uncover may lead to humanity’s extinction.

This is a very ambitious and detailed novel from acclaimed space opera author Hamilton and represents the start of an intriguing new series. The story makes clever use of multiple time-periods, taking the reader through a range of different points in humanity’s future. Filled with some thought-provoking ideas, this is an extremely captivating piece of science fiction.

Foundryside by Robert Jackson Bennett

Jo Fletcher Books, $32.99

In the city of Tevanne, everything is run by four rich merchant houses that provide the city with magical inscriptions known as scrivings, which can imbue everyday items with powerful abilities. Talented thief Sancia Grado is hired to steal an ancient artefact, but finds herself hunted as part of a massive conspiracy that could see the destruction of the entire city.

Bennett has produced a fun and humorous adventure, set in a wonderful new fantasy city. Featuring several exciting action sequences and some great characters, including a sentient key, this is a fantastic book that will appeal to a wide range of readers.

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Ian Cubitts
Ian Cubitts