Fictional Detectives on RB Digital

If you want to discover the origins of the detectives you’ve seen on TV, have a look at some of the crime novels on RB Digital (

You will find Tony Hill from ‘Wire in the Blood’ in some of Val McDermid’s books, and John Rebus appears in the novels of Ian Rankin.

Two of Ann Cleeves’ detectives, Vera Stanhope in ‘Vera’ and Jimmy Perez in ‘Shetland’ have transferred to TV, and we have a couple of novels featuring each of them.

Another author who has had two detectives on screen is M C Beaton, and we have several novels featuring Agatha Raisin, and several again featuring Hamish Macbeth.

We also cover classic crime, including Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes, Christie’s Hercule Poirot, and GK Chesterton’s Father Brown.

So come and have a look – as well as these you’ll find many others that haven’t (yet?) made the leap to TV.

Jenny Quintana talks about her new novel, Our Dark Secret, for World Book Night

Local author Jenny Quintana was due to visit Wokingham Library this week to talk about her writing career and her new novel  “Our Dark Secret” as part of our celebrations for World Book Night.Jenny Quintana, author.

To whet you appetite, Jenny describes her new book below. It is available in our digital library as an ebook at and is available digitally and on audio at :



Our Dark Secret is a mystery, but it is also a coming of age story which focuses on the unlikely friendship between two very different teenage girls. When I began to write the novel, I knew that I wanted to explore the psychological effects of how an action or decision taken at a young age could impact on a whole life. I love a good mystery – having grown up devouring Agatha Christie as well as gothic tales such as The Woman in White and stories by Edgar Allan Poe, so the story involves a crime – a crime that haunts the protagonist, Elizabeth, her entire life. A crime that she knows must stay hidden if her life is not to unravel.

In my first novel, The Missing Girl, I also explored the relationship between teenage sisters. So, what is it that is so compelling about writing about this age group? Like most people, I can remember my teenage years, the worries and insecurities, the need to be liked and most of all to fit in. At a time when you are physically and psychologically changing so rapidly, it is difficult to deal with such intense emotions. Close friendship can be wonderful, but at the same time it can be turbulent, competitive and heart breaking. At a young age, minor issues such as wearing the wrong clothes, or having spots, or not being allowed out by your parents become magnified. Emotions are heightened and wrong decisions are made. What if one of those decisions was so terrible it was to haunt you for the rest of your life? This question was the starting point for Our Dark Secret.

When I wrote The Missing Girl, the characters drifted into my mind almost fully formed. The same thing happened with Our Dark Secret. It’s 1978. Elizabeth Constance Valentine is fifteen years old, frumpy, overweight and clever, destined for Oxford or Cambridge and a perfect target for the bullies. Yet all Elizabeth wants to do is to fit in and to have friends that she can talk to about boys and make-up and magazines. When the bright and beautiful Rachel moves to her town, Elizabeth is drawn to her, and as Elizabeth’s own family life starts to break down, her admiration turns into obsession until eventually a chain of events takes place which ends with the two girls bound together by a terrible secret.

Twenty years on, Elizabeth has moved away from her home town and lives in Oxford. Never having made it to Oxford University, she works in a cafe. When a neighbour from home calls to tell her about the discovery of a body hidden in the dip of the wasteland where Elizabeth once had a den, Elizabeth knows exactly who the body belongs to and why it is there. She believes it is only a matter of time before the body is identified. What should she do? Should she come forward and confess what she knows? Elizabeth gives herself a day to decide, to remember the story and to get things straight in her mind. Gradually through her narrative the dark secret of her teenage years is revealed.


Jenny Quintana grew up in Essex and Berkshire, before studying English Literature in London. She has taught in London, Seville and Athens and has also written books for teaching English as a foreign language. Her first novel, The Missing Girl, was published in 2017 and chosen as a Waterstones Thriller of the Month. She now lives with her family in Berkshire. Our Dark Secret is her second novel.

Our dark secret


Our dark secret 2



Digital Crime Fiction available from Wokingham Libraries

For those who enjoy a good crime thriller here is a choice of books you can enjoy by using our free digital books service at


The Hunting Party by Lucy Foleythe hunting party

EVERYONE’S INVITED. EVERYONE’S A SUSPECT. Bristling with tension, bitter rivalries, and toxic friendships, get ready for this most hotly-anticipated thriller. In a remote hunting lodge, deep in the Scottish wilderness, old friends gather for New Year. The beautiful one,The golden couple,The volatile one,The new parents,The quiet one,The city boy,The outsider, The victim. Not an accident – a murder among friends. This is available as an ebook and an eaudio book.


MacBeth by Jo Nesbomacbeth

He’s the best cop they’ve got. When a drug bust turns into a bloodbath it’s up to Inspector Macbeth and his team to clean up the mess. He’s also an ex-drug addict with a troubled past. He’s rewarded for his success. Power. Money. Respect. They’re all within reach. But a man like him won’t get to the top.Plagued by hallucinations and paranoia, Macbeth starts to unravel. He’s convinced he won’t get what is rightfully his. Unless he kills for it. This is available as an ebook.


Past Caring by Robert Goddardpast caring

Martin Radford, history graduate, disaffected and unemployed, jumps at the chance to visit Madeira at the invitation of an old university friend who is running the local English language newspaper. Luck continues to run for him when he is offered a lucrative commission to research the mysterious resignation and subsequent obscure retirement on Madeira of Edwardian cabinet minister Edwin Strafford. However, his investigation triggers a bizarre and inveitably violent train of events which remoreslessly entagles him and those who believed they had escaped the spectre of crimes long past but never paid for.

This is available as an ebook.


Snapped in Cornwall-Jane Bolithosnapped in cornwall

Rose Trevelyan had only met Gabrielle Milton once, but felt they might become good friends. She was delighted, therefore, to receive an invitation to the Milton’s party where the wine flowed freely and a good time was being had by all – that is, until Gabrielle’s crumpled, lifeless body was found underneath a balcony. This is available as an ebook



Rules for Perfect Murders by Peter Swansonswanson

If you want to get away with murder, play by the rules. A series of unsolved murders with one thing in common: each of the deaths bears an eerie resemblance to the crimes depicted in classic mystery novels.The deaths lead FBI Agent Gwen Mulvey to mystery bookshop Old Devils. Owner Malcolm Kershaw had once posted online an article titled ‘My Eight Favourite Murders,’ and there seems to be a deadly link between the deaths and his list – which includes Agatha Christie’s The ABC Murders, Patricia Highsmith’s Strangers on a Train and Donna Tartt’s The Secret History.Can the killer be stopped before all eight of these perfect murders have been re-enacted? This is available as an ebook and an eaudio book


Revenge in the Cotswolds by Rebecca Toperevenge

Thea Osborne is determined to avoid trouble during her latest commission house-sitting in the pretty Cotswold village of Daglingworth. Anticipating a relaxing two weeks looking after the client’s pets, brightened with phone calls to her boyfriend, Drew, Thea settles down for a quiet assignment. Until, that is, a dead body is discovered in a nearby quarry.Could the death be linked to a group of environmental activists who have intimidated local residents? While Thea can empathise with the activists’ views against wind farms and building developments, she is not so sure about their violent methods. As real tensions begin to simmer, even Thea, a seasoned crime-solver, is surprised by the truth . . . This is available as an ebook


The Detective’s Daughter by Lesley Thomsondetective's daughter

Detective Darnell died before he closed the case. Can his daughter solve it thirty years later? It was the murder that shocked the nation. Kate Rokesmith, a young mother, went to the river with her three-year-old son. She never came home. For three decades the case file has lain, unsolved, in the corner of an attic. Until the detective’s daughter Stella, a cleaner who loves restoring order, starts to clear out her father’s house after his death… THE DETECTIVE’S DAUGHTER SERIES: The Detective’s Daughter. Ghost Girl. The Detective’s Secret. The House With No Rooms. The Dog Walker.

This is available as an ebook


 Lady in the Lake by Laura Lippman lady

Cleo Sherwood disappeared eight months ago. Aside from her parents and the two sons she left behind, no one seems to have noticed. It isn’t hard to understand why: it’s 1964 and neither the police, the public nor the papers care much when Negro women go missing. Maddie Schwartz – recently separated from her husband, working her first job as an assistant at the Baltimore Sun – wants one thing: a byline. When she hears about an unidentified body that’s been pulled out of the fountain in Druid Hill Park, Maddie thinks she is about to uncover a story that will finally get her name in print. What she can’t imagine is how many lives she is about to ruin, or how many hearts she’s about to break, by chasing a story that no-one thinks is hers to tell.

This is available as an ebook


Still Waters by Judith Cutlerstill waters

One cold, wet evening in an otherwise unusually dry April, a man falls from the fifth floor window of a hotel in Hythe. Did he jump or was he pushed?Detective Chief Superintendent Fran Harman is already struggling to juggle her work and private life: she is having difficulties finding a company willing to restore her and her boyfriend’s new home and has to put Mark up in her own cottage whilst the work is completed. And now, why did this man jump from a hotel balcony when he had a perfectly good balcony at home?A glitch with the water system and her boyfriend’s troublesome daughter add more problems to Fran’s lot. Can she find the time to discover what it is that appears not quite right about Alec Minton’s death?

This is available as an ebook

The Unseen Hand by Edward Marstonunseen hand

It is the autumn of 1917, and at the luxurious Lotus Hotel in Chelsea, a maid is disrupted from her morning rounds by a horrifying discovery: instead of the dignified older lady who has been occupying a room, she finds the dead body of a much younger woman. Harvey Marmion and Joe Keedy are dispatched from Scotland Yard to investigate, and learn that she seems to have been poisoned. But who is this woman? And what has happened to the previous occupant of the room? With a high-profile client to impress, Marmion and Keedy must solve the mystery as quickly as possible, before the reputation of the hotel is damaged beyond repair.

This is available as an ebook

New crime and thriller titles in libraries this week

We have some great new crime and thriller titles in libraries this week.

9781472249401[1]No mercy by Martina Cole

Diana Davis has been head of the family business since the death of her husband, an infamous bank robber. She’s a woman in a man’s world, but no one messes with her. Her only son, Angus, is a natural born villain, but he needs to earn Diana’s trust before she’ll allow him into the business. Once he’s proved he has the brains to run their clubs in Marbella, he is given what he’s always wanted. It’s the beginning of a reign of terror that knows no bounds. But Angus has a blind spot: his wife, Lorna, and their three kids, Angus Junior, Sean and Eilish. And as the next generation enters the business, Angus has a painful truth to learn. Even when it comes to family, he must show no mercy.

The guardians by John Grisham9781473684430[1]

For 22 years Quincy Miller has sat on Death Row without friends, family or legal representation. He was accused of killing a Keith Russo, a lawyer in a small Florida town. But there were no witnesses and no motive. Just the fact that Quincy was black in an all-white town and that a blood-splattered torch was found in the boot of his car. A torch he swore was planted. A torch that conveniently disappeared from evidence just before his trial. But the police photographs of the torch were enough. In the eyes of the law Quincy is guilty and, no matter how often he protests his innocence, his punishment will be death. Finally, after 22 years, an innocence lawyer and minister, Cullen Post, takes on his case. But there were powerful and ruthless people behind Russo’s murder. They prefer that an innocent man goes to his death than one of them.

9781787632110[1]Whatever it takes by Andy McNab

They say before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves. For James Mercer, the financial ruin of his family by the institutions they trusted can never be undone. It shattered everyone, leaving him with a burning need to right the wrongs they suffered. He will stop at nothing to recoup what they are owed. It’s not theft – it’s payback. ‘Whatever it Takes‘ tells the story of one man’s extraordinary pursuit of justice against devastating odds, a story as hard and real and controversial as any of today’s headlines, which will show the world as it really is.

19th Christmas by James Patterson9781780899428[1]

Christmas is coming, but crime never stops for the Women’s Murder Club. Sergeant Lindsay Boxer is looking forward to spending time with her family over the holidays. But when she receives a tip-off that the biggest heist ever to hit San Francisco is being planned for Christmas Day, everything changes. The architect of the ambitious attack unleashes chaos across the city, laying traps and false alarms to distract Lindsay and the SFPD from his ultimate goal. As time runs out, will Lindsay be able to save the people of San Francisco from a Christmas they’d never forget?

To reserve one of these books please visit the Wokingham libraries catalogue

New crime books in libraries this week

Check out our new crime books in libraries this week….!

9781784742782[1]The benefit of hindsight by Susan Hill

On the face of it DC Simon Serrailler has had time to recuperate after the violent incident that cost him his arm, and nearly his life. He is back in harness at Lafferton CID, but is spending his spare time high up in the cathedral roof, making drawings of some medieval angels which are being restored. Lafferton is going through a quiet patch, so far as crime is concerned, until one rainy night two local men open their front door to a couple seeking shelter. A serious error of judgment in the investigation puts Simon’s reputation on the line and calls into question how full his recovery has really been. In her new role as a private GP, Simon’s sister Cat’s medical and counselling skills are tested by terrible and unexpected events at the homes of two very different Lafferton women.

Now you see them by Elly Griffiths9781786487346[1]

Edgar Stephens is now a Superintendent and married to former DS Emma Holmes. Edgar’s wartime partner in arms, magician Max Mephisto, is a movie star in Hollywood, while his daughter Ruby has her own TV show, Ruby Magic. The funeral of Stan Parks, aka Diablo, actor and wartime comrade to Edgar and Max, throws the gang back together. The reunion sparks all sorts of feelings. Bob Willis, now a DI, is dealing with the disappearance of local schoolgirl Rhonda Miles. Emma, frustrated by living the life of a housewife and mother, keeps thinking how much better she would run the case. She is helped by Sam Collins, a woman reporter also hampered by sexism at work. Sam notices a pattern with other missing girls. Edgar listens to the theory but doesn’t give it much credence. He is preoccupied with the threatened invasion of Brighton by Mods and Rockers on the May Bank Holiday.

9781471179235[1]The lying room by Nicci French

A trusted colleague and friend. A mother. A wife. Neve Connolly is all these things. She has also made mistakes; some small, some unconsciously done, some large, some deliberate. She is only human, after all. But now one mistake is spiralling out of control and Neve is bringing those around her into immense danger. She can’t tell the truth. So how far is she prepared to go to protect those she loves. And who does she really know? And who can she trust? A liar. A cheat. A threat. Neve Connolly is all these things. Could she be a murderer?

To reserve your copy visit the Wokingham Libraries catalogue at

New crime and thriller fiction in libraries this week

Read on to discover the best new crime and thriller fiction in Wokingham Borough Libraries this week…

Platform Seven by Louise Doughty

Platform Seven at 4am: Peterborough Railway Station is deserted. The man crossing the covered walkway on this freezing November morning is confident he’s alone. As he sits on the metal bench at the far end of the platform it is clear his choice is strategic – he’s as far away from the night staff as he can get. What the man doesn’t realise is that he has company. Lisa Evans knows what he has decided. She knows what he is about to do as she tries and fails to stop him walking to the platform edge. Two deaths on Platform Seven. Two fatalities in eighteen months – surely they’re connected? No one is more desperate to understand what connects them than Lisa Evans herself. After all, she was the first of the two to die.

The Dirty Dozen by Linda La Plante

April 1980 and Jane is the first female detective to be posted to the Met’s renowned Flying Squad, commonly known as the ‘Sweeney’. Based at Rigg Approach in East London, they investigate armed robberies on banks, cash in transit and other business premises. Jane thinks her transfer is on merit and is surprised to discover she is actually part of a short term internal experiment, intended to have a calming influence on a team that likes to dub themselves as theDirty Dozen‘. The men on the squad don’t think a woman is up to the dangers they face when dealing with some of London’s most ruthless armed criminals, who think the only ‘good cop’ is a dead cop. Determined to prove she’s as good as the men, Jane discovers from a reliable witness that a gang is going to carry out a massive robbery involving millions of pounds. But she doesn’t know who they are, or where and when they will strike.

How The Dead Speak by Val McDermid

When human remains are discovered in the grounds of an old convent, it quickly becomes clear that someone has been using the site as their personal burial ground. But with the convent abandoned long ago and the remains dating back many years, could this be the work of more than one obsessive killer? It’s an investigation that throws up more questions as the evidence mounts, and after their last case ended catastrophically, Tony Hill and Carol Jordan can only watch from afar. As they deal with the consequences of previous actions, someone with a terrifying routine is biding their time – and both Tony and Carol find themselves closer to the edge than they have ever been before.

Black Ops by Chris Ryan

A series of gruesome killings take place in Dubai, Ghana and America. The victims are all connected with the SAS. In Hereford Danny Black realises they have something more specific in common – they were all involved in training a young Muslim soldier, Ibrahim Khan. Khan has been working under cover in Islamic State in a mission organised by MI6. Danny Black sets out to track him down with the help of Khan’s MI6 handler on a trail that leads him to a library of ancient manuscripts in Damascus, the Syrian desert and finally back in the Brecon Beacons. There Danny discovers that he has finally met his match, his deadliest enemy – and it is the last person he ever expected.

To reserve any of these titles, please visit the Wokingham Borough Libraries catalogue at




Focus on our new Crime and Thriller novels

Here at Wokingham Borough Libraries we stock lots of new Crime and Thriller novels because we know you love them! This week has been a particularly bumper week with these new titles arriving into libraries.

“End Game” by international number one bestselling author David Baldacci is the fifth book in the thrilling Will Robie series.

“Hardcore 24” is the latest novel in the Stephanie Plum crime series by Janet Evanovich.

“The Ultimatum” is the first thriller in The Guardian series by Karen Robards, perfect for fans of Karen Rose and Sandra Brown.

From the Sunday Times bestselling author Simon Kernick comes the gripping second installment in The Bone Field series featuring DI Ray Mason and PI Tina Boyd, called “The Hanged Man”.

Finally, we have the spellbinding new Ben Hope thriller “The Bach Manuscript” by Scott Mariani.

Reserve your copy via the Wokingham Borough Libraries online catalogue