Fiction – other

Blue Watch

Troika Books, October 2019
An adventure story for 12-16 year olds (and others!) set during the London Blitz and dedicated to the memory of my father,
who served in the Fire Brigade throughout WW2.

It’s 1940. The heart of the Blitz. Wave after wave of enemy bombers each night over London. Fifteen year-old Jack has been evacuated to the country, leaving men behind like his father – a fireman in Blue Watch – risking their lives to prevent the city going up in flames. Anxious to play his part, Jack runs off back to London and becomes a fire brigade messenger, criss-crossing from blazing building to blazing building as enemy bombs begin to fall. When, during an air-raid, he meets and befriends Lilith, a young refugee, Jack thinks he has found a little peace, but that piece is soon threatened in a dangerous and unexpected way.

A tense novel of adventure and courage, based around the experiences of John Harvey’s own father, who served with the London Fire Brigade during World War Two

Fiction post-1989 other books

Good Baitrsz_good_bait_pb

Published by William Heinemann in hardcover and eBook versions, January, 2012

Unabridged Audio version from W. F. Howes,  February. 2012

US publication : Pegasus Books, mid-October, 2012

When a seventeen-year-old Moldovan boy is found dead on Hampstead Heath, the case falls to DCI Karen Shields and her overstretched Homicide & Serious Crime team. Karen knows she needs a result. What she doesn’t know is that her new case is tied inextricably to a much larger web of gang warfare and organised crime which infiltrates almost every aspect of London society, from the back streets and high-rises of Tottenham to the multimillion-pound hideaways of the new international entrepreneurs.

Several hundred miles away in Cornwall, DI Trevor Cordon is stirred from his day-to-day duties by another tragic London fatality. Travelling to the capital, determined to establish the cause of death and trace the deceased’s daughter – an old acquaintance from Penzance – Cordon becomes entangled in a lethally complex situation of his own. A situation much closer to Karen’s case then either of them can imagine…

Brilliantly plotted and filled with rich, subtle characters, John Harvey’s latest novel reveals him once again as a masterful writer with his finger firmly on the pulse of twenty-first-century crime.

‘John Harvey is not just a fine crime novelist but a fine writer, and an adornment to his chosen genre. I devoured Good Bait in a day, and defy any reader to do otherwise. Great Stuff.’
John Connolly

‘Intricate, character-driven plotting and a large canvas full of telling detail lift this above the average police procedural.’
Laura Wilson, The Guardian

”Good Bait’ proves that John Harvey is always prepared to tackle something new and ambitious.’
Barry Forshaw, The Independent

‘Nearly three years after his last novel,  John Harvey returns in resounding form … Terrific plot and, in Karen Shields, a splendid new heroine.’
Marcel Berlins, The Times

‘Just when you thought that Harvey couldn’t get any better, up he pops with yet another brilliantly constructed, coolly written, chillingly sharp and utterly contemporary procedural.’
Henry Sutton, Daily Mirror

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Fiction post-1989 other books

cold in handcold in handIn a True Light, William Heinemann, 2001

In A True Light is set in London, New York and Northern Tuscany at the present time and in the late 1950s. A crime novel which centres around the character of Sloane, a painter-turned-forger who first appeared in Still Water, it is also a novel about painting and painters, about identity and belonging, and accepting responsibility for ourselves and others. Oh, and there’s some jazz thrown in.

“John Harvey writes the way we all wish we could write. Elegaic and eloquent, his stories filled with the blood of true character. In In a True Light he is at his very best. It’s a crime story, sure, but it’s also a larger story about redemption and consequences set to the beat of the human heart.”
Michael Connelly

John Harvey reads Monk at the Five Spot from In A true Light

Fiction post-1989 other books

gone to groundgone to groundGone to Ground, William Heinemann, 2007

Set in Cambridge and the surrounding Fens, as well as the more familiar landscape of Nottinghamshire, Gone to Ground features DI Will Grayson and DS Helen Walker, who first appeared in the short story, “Snow, Snow, Snow”. When their investigation into the murder of Stephen Bryan, a film historian and academic, falters, Bryan’s radio journalist sister takes it upon herself to uncover what really happened, and soon all three are caught up in a morass of corrupt business practices, family secrets and fifties film noir.

“John Harvey’s new novel is immaculately plotted, and constructed with care and skill.  … The range of characters and settings is large, and Harvey’s touch is sure. The female characters are especially good, from the victim’s touching mother to the trash actress great-niece of the film star. All the threads are held in perfect balance until the very end of the narrative …”
Heather O’Donogue , hueTimes Literary Supplement

Buy the unabridged audiobook from Whole Story Audio Books

Fiction post-1989 other books
nick's bluesNick’s Blues, Syros (France), 2005; Five Leaves, 2008

On his 16th birthday, Nick Harman’s mother gives him a box of things left by his father, who committed suicide when Nick was just seven years old. This sets Nick off in search of the reasons for his father’s death, a search that takes place against a background of shifting allegiances, involving the gangs on the housing estate where he lives and his first serious involvement with a girl.

“A fine novel about growing up by one of the masters of British crime fiction.”
Le Monde

Fiction post-1989 other books

far cryFar Cry, WilliamHeinemann, 2009

Ruth and Simon Pierce’s rare romantic break is shattered by devastating news: their daughter, Heather, on holiday in Cornwall with her best friend’s family, has disappeared. The loss is more than they, or their marriage, can bear and they separate. Ruth slowly builds a new life for herself, remarries, and has a second daughter, Beatrice – and then the unthinkable happens, Beatrice herself goes missing. While DI Will Grayson leads the search for Beatrice in the Cambridgeshire Fens, DS Helen Walker reexamines what happened to Heather years before.

“What price the rights of suspects when the safety of children is at stake? How much latitude should parents allow their offspring? And how does one survive the abduction and sexual abuse of a child? That Harvey can deal with such weighty issues responsibly within a page-turning crime entertainment is a measure of his mastery.”
Barry Forshaw, The Independent

Read Barry Forshaw’s review here.

or Michael Carlson’s review here.

Read Marilyn Stasio’s Review here

Read the review from the Pittsburg Post-Gazette here

Buy the unabridged audiobook from Whole Story Audio Books

Fiction post-1989 other books

minor keyMinor Key, Five Leaves, 2009

A collection which includes five previously uncollected short stories, four of them featuring Charlie Resnick, six mostly jazz-related poems and an introduction, Resnick, Nottingham and All That Jazz.

Available only in a limited edition of 500 signed copies.

All author royalties from this book are being donated to The Place2Be, specifically for the work it is doing to help foster the emotional development of children in Nottingham Primary Schools.

Buy the unabridged audiobook from Whole Story Audio Books

Fiction post-1989 other books

a darker shade of blueA Darker Shade of Blue, William Heinemann/Arrow Books, 2010

A collection of eighteen stories featuring, amongst others, Charlie Resnick, Jack Kiley and the debuts of Frank Elder and Will Grayson & Helen Walker.

Read the Independent on Sunday review here

Fiction post-1989 other books

As Editor

Blue Lightning, Slow Dancer, 1998

A diverse and unexpected collection of short stories which revolve around music in its many forms. Authors include Walter Mosley, Jeffery Deaver, Rosanne Cash, Ian Rankin, James Sallis,  Peter Robinson, Brian Thompson, Stella Duffy and Kirsty Gunn.


Fiction post-1989 other books

Men from Boys, William Heinemann, 2003

Seventeen brilliant stories that set out to answer, in their various ways, what it is to be a father, to be a son, to be a man. Includes stories by Mark Billingham, Jeffery Deaver, Reginald Hill, Dennis Lehane, George Pelecanos, Peter Robinson and a novella by Andrew Coburn.

“Bonus points to Harvey as editor for taste, virtuosity and some weird kind of compatibility-spotting which detects kinship between the most dissimilar authors. An original, outstanding collection – readable and rewarding from start to finish. ” Philip Oakes, Literary Review