1500th Post: Forthcoming Release – How to Survive a Classic Crime Novel

So one of the reasons I have posted less on my blog this year, is that I have been researching and writing my next book for the British Library. How to Survive a Classic Crime Novel, is not a puzzle book like the Pocket Detective and the Pocket Detective 2, but a humorous take on the niche literary genre of survival/advice guides. Imagine if you woke up one morning and found yourself in a classic crime novel – death is hiding around practically every corner and with murderous impulses concealed beneath polite veneers it is hard to know who you can trust. We all know from watching countless episodes of Midsomer Murders that any serial killer worth his salt has a theme for his killings, stairs are lethal, and that we should never get involved in a village fete or cricket match. But what about avoiding violent death in the cinema, a bookshop, a bus or even in your own bathroom? How can I improve my flirting and ability to compliment others? Should you lock your bedroom door at night? What should you pack on holiday? What dangers lurk in buying Christmas presents, or going on a date? How to Survive a Classic Crime Novel has you covered, taking you through one day in a classic crime novel. It is packed to the gunnels with expert advice from a host of classic crime fiction authors, from around the world. Never leave home without it!

This is the cover at the moment, although it might have a little tweak or two before June.

My panel of experts include familiar faces such as Agatha Christie, Dorothy L. Sayers, and John Dickson Carr, as well as many titles which are now back in print from the British Library, American Mystery Classics, Pushkin Vertigo, Detective Crime Club Classics, and the Dean Street Press. Furthermore, there are many less well-known authors like Virginia Perdue, Ione Montgomery, Thomas Kindon and Leslie Cargill. So as well as learning how to stay safe in a classic crime novel, you will also hopefully come away with some new authors and titles to track down.

One of the main things I wanted to avoid when writing this book was an endless dos and don’ts list, so a lot of effort has gone into making it more interactive and visually appealing, adopting different types of texts to look at different topics. I am grateful to Joanna Lisowiec, who is drawing the artwork for the book, as these images really help this aim.

The book is being released by the British Library on the 8th June 2023 in the UK, but I suspect non-UK residents will be able to buy copies via the Book Depository. I am sure you will be all making a note of the date in your diaries!

I had a lot of fun putting it together and I hope those who are kind enough to buy it or borrow it from the library find it fun too.


  1. Congratulations on a new book coming; it sounds very interesting and different and I look forward to when it coming out in the US.

    And 1500 posts is also a nice accomplishment, with all the work you put into your posts.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for your encouragement. It is much appreciated. Yes, I have surprised myself with how much the blog has grown since when I first started and amusingly thought I wouldn’t have anything to say!


  2. And now I finally understand why you sent me that email last summer asking odd questions about a book you never read (Bury that Poker by G M Wilson)! Congrats! Hope this sells well for you. I see Thomas Kindon will be mentioned. As he wrote only one book (Murder in the Moor) that I also reviewed years ago I’m glad that my blog is being put to good use even if I’m not doing much there anymore.

    Liked by 1 person

    • haha yes, I did send off a lot of peculiar emails to write this book, as I was usually trying to hunt down seemingly quite unimportant details or points. Alas the poker didn’t make it into the book, (as I had the wrong end of the stick or the poker in this case). I worked a lot from books on my own shelves, but it was great being able to access pointers and info from other GAD/classic crime fans, as it meant I could include more quirky and unusual ideas. As such I got to write my first acknowledgements page, which was nice.


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