Saturday, June 04, 2016

From Ed James to James Oswald and Stuart MacBride

Dear Readers,

this post belongs together with  It was not the XBox; the Ed James story
which I posted on 28th of May 2016. I recommend to read this post first.

Today I continue to talk about crime novels set in Scotland. I want to talk about two authors, their books, and why I chose just these authors and not for example the famous Ian Rankin.

To be honest after the discovery of Ed James I was not really interested in other modern crime fiction authors.

Of course I recognized on GOODREADS that  Ed James himself read books by other crime fiction authors like James Oswald.

By the time one name crossed my path: James Oswald.
This culminated in the purchase of a copy of Natural Causes (digital, 22nd November 2013) [Kindle ASIN: B00A8U3BRG] by James Oswald which is the first book in the Inspector McLean series end of March/beginning of April 2016.

Like Ed James, James Oswald started as an self-published author. Beside his famous Inspector McLean Mysteries series he wrote an epic fantasy series.
I do not want to compare the authors. But it should mentioned that Scott Cullen and Inspector McLean investigate in Edinburgh.

There is one remarkable detail in James Oswald's bio which I find worth to quote:
"In my spare time I run a 350 acre livestock farm in North East Fife, where I raise pedigree Highland Cattle and New Zealand Romney Sheep. You can find out more at"
Now I own a copy of the first book. Do I like it? I don't know because until I started to write this post I have not read a single line!
Nevertheless I'm really sure I will like it due to following post I read over at For winter nights – A bookish blog.

What shall I say? After I finished the post, I switched on my reader and read the first 50 pages of Natural Causes.
Do I like it? NO!  I LOVE it!!
I love it so much that I bought a copy of the second book immediately and will buy more after my holiday.
From now on there is a second modern crime fiction author which gets my attention an appreciation.

Of course I present you the books by James Oswald in the same way as I did it with the books by Ed James. That means I present the books in form of a list with titles where each contains a link which will lead you to the detailed book site over at one of my favourite sources -  FANTASTIC FICTION - plus whether I read the book or not.

Inspector McLean Mysteries
1. Natural Causes (2012), in progress
2. The Book of Souls (2012)
3. The Hangman's Song (2014)
4. Dead Men's Bones (2014)
5. Prayer for the Dead (2015)
6. The Damage Done (2016)

James Oswald is available on
Twitter           SirBenfro
GOODREADS  Author James Oswald 

I thought two modern crime authors with their series would be enough. I was wrong!

All good things come in threes

Again I must refer to For winter nights – A bookish blog. After reading

there was no other way out than to buy the first two books in the series.
This was/is such a convincing praise of author Stuart MacBride and his Logan McRae series. The stories are set in Aberdeen which differs to the two previous presented authors.

You find want to know more about the author? Thea it is up to you to find out which version is more reliable ... Visit Stuart MacBride's About page.

Cold Granite (digital, February 2009) [Kindle edition ASIN: B002RI9ZZO] by Stuart MacBride has been published first in 2005 and that is what happened:
"Anyway, while I was doing all that IT stuff, I wrote a wee book about an Aberdonian detective sergeant and his dysfunctional colleagues: Cold Granite. HarperCollins bought it, and overnight I went from a grumpy project manager caterpillar to a writing butterfly. As long as you can picture a six-foot-tall, pasty-white, bearded butterfly with no wings, that spends all its time hanging about the house in its jammies."
Now it is 2016 and I read 50 pages of Cold Granite and it is awesome. I'm so sure that I will love the rest of the book too.
There is a strong indicator for that.
Early in the morning there were some minutes left until I had to go to work. I opened Cold Granite and a couple of minutes later I tried to find out if the rain was getting stronger or not. It was then that I realized that I completely forgot my surrounding and the rain was part of the story. Incredible!

From 2005 to 2016 is more than a decade. To my pleasure the series is still going on. In January the tenth book has been published. Beside the ten books there are also shot stories starring Logan McRae.

I know for sure which books I want (need) to buy after my holiday ......

Of course I present you the books by Stuart MacBride in the same way as I did it with the books by Ed James and the books by James Oswald. That means I present the books in form of a list with titles where each contains a link which will lead you to the detailed book site over at one of my favourite sources -  FANTASTIC FICTION - plus whether I read the book or not.
Logan McRae
1. Cold Granite (2005), in progress
2. Dying Light (2006)
3. Broken Skin (2007)
     aka Bloodshot
4. Flesh House (2008)
5. Blind Eye (2009)
6. Dark Blood (2010)
7. Shatter the Bones (2011)
8. Close to the Bone (2013)
9. The Missing and the Dead (2015)
10. In the Cold Dark Ground (2016)

Logan and Steel
Partners in Crime (2012) contains two stories
The 45% Hangover (2014) a novella
22 Dead Little Bodies (2015) a novella
22 Dead Little Bodies and Other Stories (2015) contains all four stories

Stuart MacBride is available on
Twitter           Stuart MacBride
GOODREADS  Author Stuart MacBride 

I hope I could explain why especially these three authors are my favourite modern crime writers. There are many more and maybe you prefer other authors or you do not like crime fiction at all.

It seems crime fiction and mystery is like a read thread in most of the books I read. Medieval mysteries, alternate history, Regency, Victorian Era, Steampunk, epic fantasy, science fiction, crime fiction. It is incredible to see how many books I read containing elements of crime.

Maybe you want to read something beyond science fiction and fantasy. Strong stories with intense characters who develop set in amazing towns.

I want to visit Scotland, walk trough the streets of Edinburgh and Aberdeen.
For now Scotland, Edinburgh, and Aberdeen come alive in the books of the three authors which I presented to you within two posts.

Enjoy Reading

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