Martin’s latest novels include The Crooked Shore, the eighth Lake District cold case mystery (aka The Girl They All Forgot) and four Golden Age gothic mysteries featuring Rachel Savernake. The first was Gallows Court, a thriller described by Lee Child as: ‘Superb…the book Edwards was born to write’ , which was followed by Mortmain Hall, Blackstone Fell, and Sepulchre Street. Martin’s earlier novels include Dancing for the Hangman, a fictional take on the Crippen case. His most recent Harry Devlin book is Waterloo Sunset The Arsenic Labyrinth was short-listed for Lakeland Book of the Year, and The Coffin Trail was short-listed for the Theakston’s prize for best crime novel of 2006. All the Lonely People was nominated for the CWA John Creasey Memorial Dagger for the best first crime novel of the year. Take My Breath Away is a stand-alone novel of psychological suspense set in London. In addition he completed the The Lazarus Widow, the final novel by the late Bill Knox, and was commissioned by the British Library to write a new finale to Anthony Berkeley’s classic detective novel The Poisoned Chocolates Case.
Martin is an award-winning author of more than 70 short crime stories, some of which are collected in Where Do You Find Your Ideas? and other stories, which has an introduction by Reginald Hill. ‘Test Drive’, ‘Motives for Murder’ and ‘Strangers on a Bus’ have all been short-listed for the CWA Short Story Dagger, while ‘The Bookbinder’s Apprentice’ won the Dagger. In 2014 he published The New Mysteries of Sherlock Holmes, an ebook with an introduction by David Stuart Davies which collects Martin’s pastiche Sherlock Holmes stories as well as several articles. In the same year, he was also awarded the inaugural CWA Margery Allingham Prize for his story ‘Acknowledgments’. ‘The Locked Cabin’ was selected by Lee Child for The Best Mystery Stories of the Year 2021 while ‘The Traitor’ was commissioned by the Mysterious Bookshop in New York City for its acclaimed series of Bibliomysteries.
Martin has edited over forty books of crime writing, including (since 1996) the CWA’s annual collection and eighteen collections commissioned by the British Library. His anthologies have yielded many Dagger winners and nominees. He has also edited three collections featuring members of the Murder Squad crime writers’ collective, of which Best Eaten Cold and other stories included two stories which jointly won the CWA Short Story Dagger.
Writing about Crime Fiction
Martin is the author of the much acclaimed history of crime fiction The Life of Crime, as well as the multi-award winning The Golden Age of Murder and the Macavity-winning The Story of Classic Crime in 100 Books. He also conceived and edited Howdunit, a masterclass in crime writing by 90 members of the Detection Club, which won the CrimeFest H.R.F. Keating award and was nominated for five other awards. He has written about and reviewed crime fiction for numerous books, magazines, websites and blogs. His essays appear in collections such as 100 Great Detectives, Twentieth Century Crime, & Mystery Writers, The Great Good Place? , Oxford Companion To Crime & Mystery Writing, The Good Fiction Guide (ed. Jane Rogers), The Encyclopaedia of British Crime Writing, Following the Detectives, Morphologies, Mysteries Unlocked, and The Routledge Companion to Crime Fiction. He has written introductions for numerous books in the Black Dagger series, as well as for Bello’s omnibus of British crime fiction, and over eighty titles in the British Library Crime Classics series, for which he is series consultant. He also introduced the reissues of Ask a Policeman and The Anatomy of Murder by the Detection Club and five books in the Detective Story Club published by Harper Collins, as well as books published by The Folio Society, Bello, Flame Tree Press, and Dean Street Press. He has been a regular columnist for several publications.
Martin is the editor of the acclaimed true crime anthology Truly Criminal, published in 2015. As well as occasional articles about true crime cases, he has written an illustrated book on how the police take a homicide case from crime scene to court. Its titles are: Catching Killers, Urge to Kill, and Motive to Murder, depending on whether you look at the UK, US or Australian editions! More recently he contributed a study of the Harold Shipman case, ‘The First of Criminals’, to an anthology of true crime essays.
Martin has published seven legal books (two as co-author) as well as over 1000 articles for newspapers and magazines as diverse as The Times, Good Housekeeping, Car Mechanics, International Management and Amateur Gardening. He has also contributed to a number of multiple-author textbooks, mainly on his specialist subject of employment law. His Tottel’s Equal Opportunities Handbook is currently in its fourth edition.
Martin established himself as a reviewer of crime fiction in the late 1980s and nowadays many of his reviews appear on his blog ‘Do you write under your own name?’
Martin’s blog ‘Do You Write Under Your Own Name?’ started in October 2008 and is updated at least three times a week. Currently, the blog is approaching three million pageviews.