BY Robert haile
M.W. Craven is back with the fourth instalment of the award winning Washington Poe series, Dead Ground.
After winning the 2019 CWA Gold Dagger for opening book of the series The Puppet Show, The Curator picked up the 2020 Women and Home Book Choice Award, one of crimes writings newest voices continues to make positive noise.
‘One of the most intriguing detective duos out there’ – Abir Mukherjee
Detective Sergeant Washington Poe is in court, fighting eviction from his beloved and isolated croft, when he is summoned to a backstreet brothel in Carlisle where a man has been beaten to death with a baseball bat.
Poe is confused – he hunts serial killers and this appears to be a straightforward murder-by-pimp – but his attendance was requested personally, by the kind of people who prefer to remain in the shadows.
As Poe and the socially awkward programmer Tilly Bradshaw delve deeper into the case, they are faced with seemingly unanswerable questions: despite being heavily vetted for a high-profile job, why does nothing in the victim’s background check out?
Why was a small ornament left at the murder scene – and why did someone on the investigation team steal it?
And what is the connection to a flawlessly executed bank heist three years earlier, a heist where nothing was taken.
‘Jaw-droppingly shocking and intense’ – Women & Home
Fans of M.W. Craven will have to wait for Dead Ground as it is only available for pre-order but they will be spoiled for choice as Waterstones will be selling an Exclusive Edition which will include an extra short story and pink edging, available on June 3.
For those who want to immerse themselves in M.W. Craven’s world as Washington Poe travels around Cumbria, ATO Tours have designed a tour taking in the sights and places where the victims are found.
M. W. Craven was born in Carlisle but grew up in Newcastle, joined the army at sixteen, leaving a decade later to complete a social work degree and spent seventeen years as a probation officer in Cumbria, rising to the rank of assistant chief officer.
The first in the Washington Poe series, The Puppet Show, won the 2019 CWA Gold Dagger, has sold in numerous foreign territories and has been optioned for TV by Studio Lambert.
The Curator was a 2020 Woman & Home Book Choice Award winner.
Author of the Avison Fluke novels, Born in a Burial Ground (shortlisted for the CWA Debut Dagger) and Body Breaker.