Books by Robert Barnard

Robert Barnard received the Cartier Diamond Dagger in 2003, Britain's top award for lifetime achievement in crime writing. He has also won the prestigious Nero Wolfe Award as well as the Anthony, Agatha, and Macavity Awards. An eight-time Edgar nominee an


A CHARITABLE BODY by Robert Barnard
Released: Jan. 3, 2012

"Red herrings, upstairs-downstairs brouhaha and more than a whiff of scandal from Barnard, who has handled it all in slightly better form before."
What's the connection between a stately home and a house of ill repute? Read full book review >
A STRANGER IN THE FAMILY by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: June 1, 2010

"Middling Barnard (The Killings on Jubilee Terrace, 2009, etc.)—that is, several paces ahead of the rest in the genre."
A young man searches for his birth family. Read full book review >
THE KILLINGS ON JUBILEE TERRACE by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: May 1, 2009

"Witty, wry and a great deal of back-biting fun until Barnard opts for a wrenching denouement."
The cast changes at Britain's second-highest-rated soap opera are accelerated by murder. Read full book review >
LAST POST by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: May 1, 2008

"If not quite top-notch for the Diamond Dagger Lifetime Achievement winner (A Fall from Grace, 2007, etc.), kilometers ahead of his compatriots and a pleasure for enthusiasts of the peel-the-layers-of-the-onion school."
A sympathy card radically upends a daughter's memories of her mum. Read full book review >
A FALL FROM GRACE by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: May 1, 2007

"The usually adroit Barnard (Dying Flames, 2006, etc.) begins and ends skillfully but bogs down at the three-quarters mark and has to rely on a bus conversation and a car-ride recap. Still, this is an exquisitely troubling portrait of parenting, teaching and the pack mentality."
The murder of an irascible father-in-law. Read full book review >
DYING FLAMES by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: May 2, 2006

"Just sit back and enjoy. You're in expert hands."
Barnard (The Graveyard Position, 2005, etc.), who has so many aces up his sleeve he could be outlawed in Vegas, presents another rattling good story that glides in and out of the psyche's crevasses. Read full book review >
THE GRAVEYARD POSITION by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: May 3, 2005

"Be warned: the Cantelo clan lacks not only humor and charm but also common decency. Still, the plotting of wily Barnard (A Cry from the Dark, 2004, etc.) is an undeniable pleasure."
The return of a prodigal thought dead. Read full book review >
A CRY FROM THE DARK by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Feb. 1, 2004

"Below par for the usually dexterous Barnard (The Mistress of Alderley, p. 271, etc.), with surprisingly heavy-handed attempts at misdirection, although the 1930s outback sequences will keep you reading."
An elderly London memoirist recalls her present on graduating from the Australian outback: rape. Read full book review >
THE MISTRESS OF ALDERLEY by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: April 1, 2003

"If not quite Barnard at his best, close enough."
Normally the Yorkshire villagers would shun the likes of former actress Caroline Fawley, but the lover who's set her up in Alderley, a charming stately home, and visited her on weekends is super-rich supermarket tycoon Marius Fleetwood. Read full book review >
THE BONES IN THE ATTIC by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: April 1, 2001

"Developed with the skill typical of Barnard (The Corpse at the Haworth Tandoori, 1999, etc.), all the more potent for dispensing with flash, gore, and melodrama."
A genteel inquiry into the grave problem of what happens when one's future is shanghaied by one's past. Read full book review >
A MURDER IN MAYFAIR by Robert Barnard
Released: April 1, 2000

"If Barnard is the Jane Austen of mystery writers, then this is his Sense and Sensibility: pleasantly sentimental, morally unambiguous, and relatively unsurprising."
On the same day his party's ascent into the majority secures him a very, very junior but nonetheless desirable cabinet post in the Department of Education and Training, Colin Pinnock, a member of Parliament from Milton, Yorkshire, finds his public life neatly eclipsed by his private goings-on. Read full book review >
THE CORPSE AT THE HAWORTH TANDOORI by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: April 5, 1999

"Suspense seldom flags in a steadily absorbing story."
Another of Barnard's (The Habit of Widowhood, etc.) imaginative forays into murder and its ramifications. Read full book review >
NO PLACE OF SAFETY by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: May 4, 1998

"Dextrously understated, with a mystery whose twists and turns will surprise only readers who aren't familiar with Barnard's line in civilized malice."
A century and a world away from the stately intrigue of A Mansion and Its Murder (see Bastable, below), Barnard returns to contemporary Leeds for the memorably downscale story of the Centre, a temporary hostel for homeless young people. Read full book review >
THE HABIT OF WIDOWHOOD by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Sept. 1, 1996

"Balmorality'' are true standouts, but fans will devour the whole collection in a single guilty gulp."
Though the 17 stories collected here range from the disastrous effects of arranged marriage (``Cupid's Dart'') to a dog's-eyeview of homicide (``Dog Television''), no one but Barnard (The Bad Samaritan, 1995, etc.) could have written any of them: The tone of ironic, amused malice is unmistakable. Read full book review >
THE BAD SAMARITAN by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Oct. 1, 1995

"Literate and readable, as always with Barnard, but without the spark and sparkle that grace his best work."
There's lots of gossip among the members of Church of England's St. Read full book review >
THE MASTERS OF THE HOUSE by Robert Barnard
Released: Sept. 1, 1994

"Connie's soothing advent, which at first seems to let all the tension out of the Heenans' story, ends by provoking as many surprises as you'd expect from the versatile Barnard (A Hovering of Vultures, 1993) in this memorably off-kilter tale. (Author tour)"
The death of his wife in childbirth sends unemployed Dermot Heenan into such a tailspin—after a day muttering about how he's been justly punished, he retreats to silence and his bed—that his children are afraid he'll be institutionalized and they'll be parceled out to the tender mercies of Her Majesty's government. Read full book review >
A HOVERING OF VULTURES by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Sept. 1, 1993

"He has fun with the poseurs and aspirers—and so will the reader."
Scotland Yard is keeping tabs on suave, wily antique-book dealer Gerald Suzman, involved in several lucrative literary scams over the years and now the creator of the Sneddon Fellowship, celebrating the novels of Susannah Sneddon. Read full book review >
A FATAL ATTACHMENT by Robert Barnard
Released: Aug. 1, 1992

"Graced with Barnard's usual ironic, literate style but short on the warmth, verve, and suspense that mark his best work (A City of Strangers, etc.)."
Prim, unflappable Lydia Perceval—a successful writer of historical biographies living quietly in the tiny Yorkshire village of Bly—seems an unlikely murder victim, but, as police detectives Mike Oddie and Charlie Peace soon find out, appearances can deceive. Read full book review >
A SCANDAL IN BELGRAVIA by Robert Barnard
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Aug. 1, 1991

"The reader may doubt the ability of Proctor and other characters to recall in detail 30-year-old conversations and events, but Proctor's story is quietly engrossing all the way to its jolting conclusion."
Ever-versatile Barnard (A City of Strangers, etc.) gives us a low-keyed story told by wryly self-deprecating widower and ex- cabinet minister Peter Proctor, now retired and writing memoirs that even he finds boring—until his memory of Timothy Wycliffe is revived. Read full book review >