My Favourite Reads of 2023

My Favourite Reads of 2023

I had an abundance of riches from which to choose my favourite reads of 2023. I came up with a final selection of eight standout books, six published this year and two older titles. Please click on the links to read my full reviews.


Best Book of the Year

Chasing the Dragon by Mark Wightman

A sumptuous serving of Singapore-style historical crime fiction. Meticulously researched and fluently told. The vivid writing has stayed in my mind since I read it for my stop on the blog tour.


A close second place

The Kill Show by Daniel Sweren-Becker

A fast-paced page-turner that takes a swipe at our insatiable desire for true-crime documentaries.


Best new crime series

Unsolved by Heather Critchlow

Told across two timelines and from two viewpoints: A present-day podcaster sleuth with a tragic backstory and a beleaguered young woman who disappears in 1986.

Unburied, book 2 in the Cal Lovett Files series, will be published in January 2024 and is even better than book 1…


Best Festive Thriller

The Party Season by SJI Holliday

A suspenseful piece of festive sparkle, featuring a serial killer on a ‘noble’ mission at office Christmas parties.


Best Fun Read

You Can Run by Trevor Wood

A fast-paced rollicker that features the unlikeliest bunch of heroes.


Best Short Story Collection

The Clock in My Mother’s House and other stories by Annalisa Crawford

A beautifully crafted selection of short stories.


Best Older Titles

It wasn’t just new releases that thrilled me this year. Two older titles that stood out were:


The Night Shift by Alex Finlay (2022)

A cleverly-plotted mystery that had me stumped.


Her Final Words by Briana Labsukes (2020)

A great police procedural from a writer who knows all about plot and pace.

By Rachel Sargeant

Rachel Sargeant is a British author. Under the name Rae Sargeant, she writes the Gleveham Killers Suspense series, published by Hobeck Books. The first title is Her Deadly Friend. Her titles as Rachel Sargeant, with HarperCollins, are: The Roommates, a psychological thriller set in a university during freshers' week; The Good Teacher, a detective mystery, featuring DC Pippa “Agatha” Adams, and The Perfect Neighbours, a psychological thriller set in Germany. Rachel grew up in Lincolnshire, studied at Aberystwyth University, spent several years living in Germany and now lives in Gloucestershire with her family. She holds a PhD from the University of Birmingham.

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