‘Poirot was silent a minute. Then he said:

“If you will be so good, M. Hardman, assemble everyone here. There are two possible solutions of this case. I want to lay them both before you all.” (Christie, Murder on the Orient Express, 1934).

I always think one of the best moments in a crime or detective novel is when you realise after X number of pages you’re finally going to find out whodunit.

On this blog, Crossing Examining Crime, I plan to mainly review crime fiction. As the quote above suggests, one of my favourite sub-genres of crime fiction is the Golden Age, but I also enjoy reading translated crime fiction. I will primarily be reviewing books, but occasionally I will comment on films, TV series and theatre productions.

I write articles regularly for CADs (Crime and Detective Stories) magazine and have been published in Mystery Scene Magazine and Mystery Readers Journal. I also have an entry in 100 Greatest Literary Detectives (2018), on Juanita Sheridan’s rather wonderful Lily Wu.

I am also running a vintage mystery book box subscription service. Click here for more details.

Finally to round off all this self-promoting malarkey I am very excited to announce I have compiled the puzzles for the British Library’s The Pocket Detective (2018) and its sequel The Pocket Detective 2 (2019). In June 2023 my next book, How to Survive a Classic Crime Novel, will also be published by the British Library.

I’m really looking forward to hearing your views on crime fiction, so don’t be shy!


  1. I look forward to reading your entry in “Sleuths, Private Eyes and Policemen”. When will it be released?
    I have always enjoyed these stories, some people class the genre as ‘cosy crime’ since there is very little blood, but I believe the suspense is what keeps the reader hooked.
    I have penned my own ‘Holmes Type’ as an entry into a competition (2nd place winner). I enjoyed this so much that I had to complete a series of short stories in my publication ‘The Case of the Mahjong Dragon.’
    If you are interested, I can send a PDF copy rather than you buy it. Alternatively it is available through the British Library.
    I enjoy reading your site and your reading capacity amazes me, I wish i could read as quickly and as much.


    Liked by 1 person

    • Glad you are enjoying the blog. Not quite sure when Sleuths, Private Eyes and Policemen will be released, but I am hoping sometime this year. As to your kind offer I have sent you an email to discuss it in more detail.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Dear Armchair Reviewer,

    Bestselling African novelist Chanette Paul will make her English-language debut this October with her crime novel Sacrificed. I’m writing to ask if you’d like to receive an advance review copy?

    Sacrificed explores the questions of what constitutes family, and whether qualities of good and evil are innate or nurtured. These themes hold special significance for Paul, who was adopted and never met her birth parents. 

    Rejected by her parents, her sister, her husband, everyone except her extraordinary and unusual daughter, Caz Colijn lives a secluded life in her own little patch of Africa. But a single phone call from her estranged sister is all it takes to shatter this refuge. Caz learns that her elderly mother is on her deathbed in Belgium—and that the old woman isn’t really Caz’s biological mother.

    This phone call is just the first step down an ever-widening tunnel into Caz’s painful past. Jetting between Belgium and Africa, she’s desperate to learn who her biological parents are, why they gave her away, and whether this has anything to do with her daughter’s exceptional nature. Caz is so caught up in discovering the truth about the past, she almost doesn’t notice the man who is falling in love with her. Or the meaning behind the key she receives. Or the two Congolese who are following her every move in search of something they’re willing to kill for.

    Chanette Paul has published 41 romance, thriller and crime novels. In South Africa, she has won the prestigious Lekkerlit prize and the Perskor prize and has twice been a finalist in the ATKV prize. She is fluent in English and happy to do interviews by Skype or email.

    I’d be happy to send you a review copy of Sacrificed. I can send you a PDF file or a print copy. It is also available on Edelweiss.

    Catalyst Press is a new independent press focused on introducing American audiences to African writers. Its first titles launch in October 2017, and it is distributed by Consortium Book Sales and Distribution (an Ingram brand). Its website is http://www.catalystpress.org.

    Best wishes,
    Shirley Vernick
    Catalyst Press


  3. Hi Arm Chair Reviewer,

    Apologies for commenting on here but I can’t seem to find an email address.

    I am the book publicist for Bloodhound Books who are a leading independent publisher in crime and thriller fiction. We have a mailing list of bloggers who we send out to with requests for our books and wondered if you would like to be part of this? The books would be a digital copy and you only ever take part in ones that you want and have the time to read.

    If you would like to be added please drop me a line at sarah@bloodhoundbooks.com

    Kind Regards

    Sarah Hardy


  4. Hi Kate I really enjoyed your article in CADS77 and thank you for the namecheck for my article “Golden Age Part of Modernist Literary Movement”. I was wondering if I could include a link to a soft copy of your article in a follow up post on the Bodies From The Library blog? Cheers Mark

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Rachel,
      Thanks for getting in touch. I am a bit of a technological dinosaur so don’t actually have an e-reader, so can only read e-books in pdf formats. Not sure if that would work for you? Equally I don’t mind thrillers but I am not a fan of a very violent or graphic ones, so happy to give your latest version a try if it avoids these issues.


  5. Hi! I’m a novice writer, i´m from argentina and I love mysteries. right now im writing a detectivesque juvenile novel about a teen sleuth and publishing a chapter every month in WordPress. I came across with your blog investigating about the publisher Poisoned pen publisher and I find your puzzle book. I have puzzles (contemporary) in my blog every month too. So I hope we read each other even if it is in coments. Greetings!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Hi Kate — I’m posting here because I don’t see an email address for you… Just wanted to make you aware of a GAD Internet group reading event I’m sponsoring in the month of November. You can find details currently in the Blog section at my jasonhalf.com site. The selected book is Gladys Mitchell’s 1929 tale The Mystery of a Butcher’s Shop, and I know you can take or leave GM, so I’m not sure if this will appeal! But I love reading your reviews, and I would welcome your observations on the book, should you choose to participate. (If you’re wondering Why Mitchell?, I run the GM tribute site over at gladysmitchell.com, and wanted to find a way to engage my site subscribers.) Cheers, and congrats on the puzzle book!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Kate – I have mentioned The Pocket Detective on my blog – I should have let you know before. I’m sorry! I must have been distracted by something. I have an awful lot on my plate at the moment. But not too late to tweet and mention on Facebook and I’ll retweet etc.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.