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Authors: Maxim Jakubowski

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The Mammoth Book of Best British Mysteries

BOOK: The Mammoth Book of Best British Mysteries
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The Mammoth Book of

BEST BRITISH
MYSTERIES

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The Mammoth Book of
BEST BRITISH
MYSTERIES
EDITED BY MAXIM JAKUBOWSKI

ROBINSON

London

Constable & Robinson Ltd
3 The Lanchesters
162 Fulham Palace Road
London W6 9ER
www.constablerobinson.com

First published in the UK by Robinson,
an imprint of Constable & Robinson Ltd 2008

Collection and editorial material copyright
© Maxim Jakubowski 2008

All rights reserved. This book is sold subject to the condition that it shall not, by way of trade or otherwise, be lent, re-sold, hired out or otherwise circulated in any
form of binding or cover other than that in which it is published and without a similar condition including this condition being imposed on the subsequent purchaser.

A copy of the British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data is available from the British Library.

ISBN 978-1-84529-711-4
eISBN 978-1-78033-281-9

Printed and bound in the EU

1 3 5 7 9 10 8 6 4 2

CONTENTS

Copyright and Acknowledgments

INTRODUCTION
Maxim Jakubowski

THE .50 SOLUTION
Lee Child

THE DEBT
Simon Kernick

THE CASE OF THE CURIOUS QUORUM
Colin Dexter

THE BOOKBINDER’S APPRENTICE
Martin Edwards

TROUBLE IS A LONESOME TOWN
Cathi Unsworth

GREEN TARTS
Deryn Lake

DAPHNE McANDREWS AND THE SMACK-HEAD JUNKIES
Stuart McBride

ONCE UPON A TIME
Peter Turnbull

THAT’S THE WAY HE DID IT
Amy Myers

THE LONG BLACK VEIL
Val McDermid

THE CURIOUS CONTENTS OF A COFFIN
Susanna Gregory

THE SIXTH MAN
Bill James

PROVENANCE
Robert Barnard

JADE SKIRT
Simon Levack

THE FERRYMAN’S BEAUTIFUL DAUGHTER
Peter Robinson

TELL ME
Zoë Sharp

COLOUR ME BLOOD
Jerry Sykes

PROS AND CONS
Donna Moore

SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE
TITANIC
SWINDLE
Len Deighton

LOVE
Martyn Waites

JUST FRIENDS
John Harvey

SAY THAT AGAIN
Peter Lovesey

CONTINUITY ERROR
Nicholas Royle

THE LAST KAYFABE
Ray Banks

TO HAVE AND TO HOLD
Ken Bruen

THE 45 STEPS
Peter Crowther

STEPPING UP
Mark Billingham

TOM OF TEN THOUSAND
Edward Marston

A CASE OF ASYLUM
Michael Jecks

THE DEATH OF JEFFERS
Kevin Wignall

DISTILLING THE TRUTH
Marilyn Todd

WISH
John Rickards

THE BRICK
Natasha Cooper

THE KILLER BESIDE ME
Allan Guthrie

UNCLE HARRY
Reginald Hill

IN SOME COUNTRIES
Jerry Raine

BRYANT AND MAY’S MYSTERY TOUR
Christopher Fowler

COPYRIGHT AND ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

THE .50 SOLUTION by Lee Child, © 2006 by Lee Child. First published in BLOODLINES, edited by Jason Starr and Maggie Estep. Reprinted by permission of the author and his
agent, Darley Anderson Literary Agency.

THE DEBT by Simon Kernick, © 2005 by Simon Kernick. First published as a promotional BMW audio story. Reprinted by permission of the author and Transworld Publishers.

THE CASE OF THE CURIOUS QUORUM by Colin Dexter, © 2006 by Colin Dexter. First published in THE VERDICT OF US ALL, edited by Peter Lovesey. Reprinted by permission of the
author.

THE BOOKBINDER’S APPRENTICE by Martin Edwards, © 2006 by Martin Edwards. First published in THE STRAND MAGAZINE. Reprinted by permission of the author.

TROUBLE IS A LONESOME TOWN by Cathi Unsworth, © 2006 by Cathi Unsworth. First published in LONDON NOIR, edited by Cathi Unsworth. Reprinted by permission of the author.

GREEN TARTS by Deryn Lake, © 2006 by Deryn Lake. First published in THE MAMMOTH BOOK OF JACOBEAN WHODUNNITS, edited by Mike Ashley. Reprinted by permission of the
author.

DAPHNE McANDREWS AND THE SMACK-HEAD JUNKIES by Stuart McBride, © 2006 by Stuart McBride, first published in DAMN NEAR DEAD, edited by Duane Swierczynski. reprinted by
permission of the author.

ONCE UPON A TIME by Peter Turnbull, © 2006 by Peter Turnbull, first published in ELLERY QUEEN’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE. Reprinted by permission of the author. THAT’S
THE WAY HE DID IT by Amy Myers, © 2006 by Amy Myers. First published in ELLERY QUEEN’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE. Reprinted by permission of the author and her agent, the Dorian Literary
Agency.

THE LONG BLACK VEIL by Val McDermid, © 2006 by Val McDermid. First published in A MERRY BAND OF MURDERERS, edited by Claudia Bishop and Don Bruns. Reprinted by permission
of the author and her agent, Gregory & Co.

THE CURIOUS CONTENTS OF A COFFIN by Susanna Gregory, © 2006 by Susanna Gregory. First published in THE MAMMOTH BOOK OF JACOBEAN WHODUNNITS, edited by Mike Ashley. Reprinted
by permission of the author.

THE SIXTH MAN by Bill James, © 2006 by Bill James. First published in THE SIXTH MAN AND OTHER STORIES. Reprinted by permission of the author.

PROVENANCE by Robert Barnard, © 2006 by Robert Barnard. First published in ELLERY QUEEN’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE. Reprinted by permission of the author and his agent,
Gregory & Co.

JADE SKIRT by Simon Levack, © 2006 by Simon Levack. First published in ELLERY QUEEN’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE. Reprinted by permission of the author and his agent, Gregory
& Co.

THE FERRYMAN’S BEAUTIFUL DAUGHTER by Peter Robinson, © 2006 by Peter Robinson. First published in A MERRY BAND OF MURDERERS, edited by Claudia Bishop and Don Bruns.
Reprinted by permission of the author.

TELL ME by Zoë Sharp, © 2006 by Zoë Sharp. First published in I.D., edited by Martin Edwards. Reprinted by permission of the author.

COLOUR ME BLOOD by Jerry Sykes, © 2006 by Jerry Sykes. First published in ELLERY QUEEN’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE. Reprinted by permission of the author.

PROS AND CONS by Donna Moore, © 2006 by Donna Moore. First published in DAMN NEAR DEAD, edited by Duane Swierczynski. Reprinted by permission of the author.

SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE
TITANIC
SWINDLE by Len Deighton, © 2006 by Len Deighton. First published in THE VERDICT OF US ALL, edited by Peter Lovesey. Reprinted by
permission of the author’s agent, Jonathan Clowes Ltd.

LOVE by Martyn Waites, © 2006 by Martyn Waites. First published in LONDON NOIR, edited by Cathi Unsworth. Reprinted by permission of the author.

JUST FRIENDS by John Harvey, © 2006 by John Harvey. First published in DAMN NEAR DEAD, edited by Duane Swierczynski. Reprinted by permission of the author.

SAY THAT AGAIN by Peter Lovesey, © 2006 by Peter Lovesey. First published in THE IDEAS EXPERIMENT, edited by Michael Z. Lewin. Reprinted by permission of the author.

CONTINUITY ERROR by Nicholas Royle, © 2006 by Nicholas Royle. First published in LONDON:CITY OF DISAPPEARANCES, edited by lain Sinclair. Reprinted by permission of the
author.

THE LAST KAYFABE by Ray Banks, © 2006 by Ray Banks. First published in THE MISSISSIPPI REVIEW. Reprinted by permission of the author.

TO HAVE AND TO HOLD by Ken Bruen, © 2006 by Ken Bruen. First published in HARDLUCK STORIES. Reprinted by permission of the author.

THE 45 STEPS by Peter Crowther, © 2006 by Peter Crowther. First published in THE MAMMOTH BOOK OF PERFECT CRIMES AND IMPOSSIBLE MYSTERIES, edited by Mike Ashley. Reprinted
by permission of the author.

STEPPING UP by Mark Billingham, © 2006 by Mark Billingham. First published in DAMN NEAR DEAD, edited by Duane Swierczynski. Reprinted by permission of the author.

TOM OF TEN THOUSAND by Edward Marston, © 2006 by Edward Marston. First published in THE MAMMOTH BOOK OF JACOBEAN WHODUNNITS, edited by Mike Ashley. Reprinted by permission
of the author. A CASE OF ASYLUM by Michael Jecks, © 2006 by Michael Jecks. First published in I.D., edited by Martin Edwards. Reprinted by permission of the author.

THE DEATH OF JEFFERS by Kevin Wignall, © 2006 by Kevin Wignall. First published in DUBLIN NOIR, edited by Ken Bruen. Reprinted by permission of the author.

DISTILLING THE TRUTH by Marilyn Todd, © 2006 by Marilyn Todd. First published in ELLERY QUEEN’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE. Reprinted by permission of the author.

WISH by John Rickards, © 2006 by John Rickards. First published in DUBLIN NOIR, edited by Ken Bruen. Reprinted by permission of the author.

THE BRICK by Natasha Cooper, © 2006 by Natasha Cooper. First published in ELLERY QUEEN’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE. Reprinted by permission of the author and her agent,
Gregory & Co.

THE KILLER BESIDE ME by Allan Guthrie, © 2006 by Allan Guthrie. First published in DAMN NEAR DEAD, edited by Duane Swierczynski. Reprinted by permission of the author.

UNCLE HARRY by Reginald Hill, © 2006 by Reginald Hill. First published in THE VERDICT OF US ALL, edited by Peter Lovesey. Reprinted by permission of the author.

IN SOME COUNTRIES by Jerry Raine, © 2006 by Jerry Raine. First published in HARDLUCK STORIES. Reprinted by permission of the author.

BRYANT AND MAY’S MYSTERY TOUR by Christopher Fowler, © 2006 by Christopher Fowler. First published in THE INDEPENDENT. Reprinted by permission of the author.

INTRODUCTION

Welcome to a new beginning, or should that be a new life of crime?

Six years ago, slightly peeved that various best of the year anthologies published in America deliberately restricted themselves to publishing only stories by US authors, I made a proposal to a
London publishing house for a similar series but this time exclusively devoted to British crime and mystery authors. Not only did I believe there was enough good material out there in magazine,
anthology, radio and Internet territories to fill a respectable annual volume, but was also aware that many of these stories were, for market reasons, only available in the USA and thus unknown to
a specifically British readership. Talk about not being a prophet in your own country!

The initial volume, titled BEST BRITISH MYSTERIES, was a runaway success and was even advertised on TV come that Christmas and earned deserved plaudits for both the book’s concept and many
of its illustrious contributors. The series has gone from strength to strength since then, adding first the number of the year from which the stories came from and, later, just a series number to
distinguish the respective volumes. Rewardingly, many of the stories, albeit by British authors, had only appeared previously in the USA and thus became eligible for the Crime Writers’
Association best short story Dagger award, and have since dominated a large proportion of the annual shortlist.

BOOK: The Mammoth Book of Best British Mysteries
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