Coming Soon… The Pocket Detective 2

So one of the reasons I have been a little less prolific on the blog of late is because I have been finishing off the puzzles for the sequel to the Pocket Detective, if puzzle books can be said to have such things.

As you can see below the British Library have continued to excel in their choice of cover artwork:

Like its predecessor The Pocket Detective 2 is a puzzle book, in which the puzzles revolve around the titles in the British Library Crime Classics series, as well as stories from Agatha Christie and Dorothy L. Sayers. This latest publication has puzzles with all the latest new titles in the British Library Crime Classics catalogue, (minus one) and I would like to think I have put a lot of effort into making sure it feels as fresh and as new as possible. Across the puzzles there are approximately 9 new types, which weren’t featured in the first book and for more familiar puzzle types such as word searches and crosswords, a number of tweaks, variations and red herrings have been included to keep readers on their toes.

Going off the information in the British Library catalogue The Pocket Detective 2 should be released in the UK in September. As and when I receive new info I’ll pass it on.

Finally, just so this post is not entirely about myself here are the other titles being released by the British Library later this year:

  • Fell Murder by E. C. R. Lorac
  • The Body in the Dumb River by George Bellairs
  • It Walks by Night by John Dickson Carr (which also includes the short story, ‘The Shadow of the Goat’)
  • The Measure of Malice: Scientific Mysteries
  • The Christmas Egg by Mary Kelly
  • Death in Fancy Dress by Anthony Gilbert

I’m sure it won’t just be me who is excited by this line up!


  1. Fantastic news! I was hoping that this might be the project you were working on so I will look forward to putting in my preorder.

    And thanks for sharing the news about the other forthcoming titles. The Carr and collection of scientific short stories are particularly exciting to me!

    On Tue, Mar 5, 2019 at 11:33 AM crossexaminingcrime wrote:

    > armchairreviewer posted: “So one of the reasons I have been a little less > prolific on the blog of late is because I have been finishing off the > puzzles for the sequel to the Pocket Detective, if puzzle books can be said > to have such things. As you can see below the British Libr” >

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks and yep I will admit to some very bleak afternoons where 3 hours in to creating 1 puzzle I realised it couldn’t possibly work and had to be discarded. I am very much indebted to my sister who lent me a lot of her puzzle books and magazines, which definitely gave me some inspiration as to what new puzzle types to try.


      • Not sure where else it’s been reprinted, but it’s in The Door To Doom, currently upstairs on my shelf. I’ll take a look.

        And yes, there are many weaker ones, but many better ones too. I appreciate it’s the first novel, but it’s not as if the BL is going to reprint the entire canon. Something like The Black Spectacles would maybe have been a more interesting choice…


          • Well, they seem to be working their way through Lorac for whatever reason.

            I’d prefer an orderly progression through the Carter Dickson books – definitely more consistent than the Fell or the others. But I can dream…

            Liked by 1 person

              • Well as of yet we’ve not started any form of gambling when it comes to predicting reprint upcoming titles. Something to try once we’ve made it through a complete GAD drinking game.
                Personally I’d like it if they reprinted Till Death Do Us Part. I would have suggested The Case of the Constant Suicides but that did get a reprint last year I believe.


                • Yeah, Suicides was reprinted last year in a lovely paperback edition. And I’m not saying I’d like it to be Castle Skull, just that I reckon that one does enough — and, crucially, is possibly OOP enough and likely controlled by the same rights-holder as It Walks by Night — to be considered by the BL. My choice would be an earlier title like The Punch and Judy Murders, since that’s great and hasn’t been reprinted recently, but I think for certain things, given the apparent complexity of the Carr estate, we’re just going to have to wait for the 50 year rule to kick in.


  2. Oh dear, the process of writing good puzzles sounds arduous – so thanks for serving us! I like the cover – and I especially like the chequered dog trotting in the corner. 🐕🐩

    The upcoming catalogue sounds good – looking forward to Gilbert and Lorac, as well as the Carr short story.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks! I’m very fortunate to have the BL doing my covers. They always do a good job. Clothing does make its way into some of the puzzles, so you’re certainly all set for those ones. Looking forward to hearing you speak in June at the conference.


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