Crime Fiction Books – Free & Bargain Priced!

There’s something for everyone in the Crime Fiction genre. Whether you enjoy the cozy escapism of an English country village, puzzling over a locked room mystery, or the dirt and grime of a hard-boiled detective going about their work. And there’s plenty in between. It’s impossible for us to have a category for every sub-genre, so here at Bookzio we decided on 3 — our Cozy Mysteries category is home to everything ‘cozy’, it’s a safe space for those who like their mysteries clean and polite. Then there’s our Mysteries category, where you’ll find some ‘real life’ and the edge of your seat. Then there’s our Crime Fiction section: this is where you’ll find hard-boiled dirt and grime, police procedurals, and borderline of the all out thriller. Enjoy…

What will I find in a ‘Crime Fiction’ Book?

Whilst the term ‘Crime Fiction’ is often used to describe the entire mystery and detective genre, it’s more descriptive of the later, gritty, ‘hard-boiled’ creations in the US, rather than the more cerebral ponderings of the UK creations.

There’s a distinction between a traditional UK mystery novel and a US crime fiction book: in a mystery, the story begins with a baffling murder, or crime of some kind, and the story tracks the evidence towards a solution, and a culprit. Mystery novels are often criticized for having little or no character development — or simply 2 dimensional characters. By contrast, crime fiction is less focused on the puzzle, and more on the characters involved. It’s not out of place, in a crime fiction novel, to know who the criminals are from the outset. The purpose of the story is less about puzzling and more about society, morality and the psychology of criminals and crime fighters. Mystery stories are escapist, in that they avoid much of the ‘blood and guts’ of true crime, and focus simply upon the puzzling aspect — crime fiction is deep in the gutter of real life.

Leaving the cozies and the Miss Marples to the Cozy and Mystery sections, our Crime Fiction category has a very American leaning. U.S. writers redefined the British mystery genre, in the days of ‘pulp fiction’ and brought much needed realism to the topic at hand.

Popular U.S. crime magazines, such as ‘Black Mask Magazine’ were filled by professional writers who relied upon their pay cheques and would use all means necessary to hook a reader in and keep them coming back for more — tactics included the addition of forbidden sex with gangsters’ molls and femmes fatales, along with brave and often violent sleuths dealing their trade in the shady mean streets.

Authors such as Norbert Davis, Raymond Chandler, Dashiell Hammett, Raoul Whitfield and Erle Stanley Gardner all graduated through this ‘blood and guts’ school of writing; which changed forever the mystery novel, when this ‘hard-boiled’ style eventually cross-pollinated with its cozy British cousin.

Both forms matured as a result of the new ‘soup’ they’d become. In the US, Chandler and Hammett took off, alongside authors such as Ross MacDonald, Cornell Woolrich, and James Cain. In Britain, there were Nicholas Blake, Michael Innes, Julian Symons and Edmund Crispin.

With the 1950’s came the police procedural genre in the US, with Ed McBain followed by Joseph Wambaugh. And the psychological mystery began developing, with writers such as Patricia Highsmith, whose characters were deep and mysterious, themselves. But still the two streams, whilst learning from each other, continued to mine their own veins: in the UK writers such as PD James, HRF Keating, Peter Lovesey and Ruth Rendell continued the traditional route, while realists in the US such as Jim Thompson, John D. McDonald, David Goodis and James M. Cain added psychological depth to the hard-boiled genre.

And it continues to develop, as its popularity continues to increase — crime and mystery fiction is as popular than ever. it was.

Science Fiction Books - Dune by Frank Herbert

Classic Crime Fiction Novel Red Harvest by Dashiell Hammett

Science Fiction Books - Enders Game by Orson Scott Card

Another classic Crime Fiction Book American Tabloid by James Ellory

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Crime Fiction Seminar at the British Library

This may appear a little ‘dusty’ as it’s over 5 years old and a ‘British Library’ production but it’s a great discussion about Crime Fiction and its history — for those interested.

Hosted by Mark Lawson (a regular arts and culture journalist for the BBC), he discusses the Crime Fiction novel genre with crime fiction writers PD James, Henry Sutton and Jason Webster including the history of the genre, their favourite classics and their own work. Well worth a watch or a listen if you have the time and the inclination!

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Bad Blood

The body slumps over the steering wheel. Pools of blood going tacky on the dash. Two shots to the back of the head.A mafia-style hit in a small town.Special Agent Violet Darger must make sense of this savagery. Figure out how brutality like this could happen in rural...

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The Girl From Paradise Hill

Tess returns home to bury her father but what she finds buried in his attic makes her question everything she thought she knew about the mild-mannered trucker…PARADISE HILL, WASHINGTONThe seemingly idyllic mountain town harbors a dark secret: four young girls have...

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Law of Five

Kate Reid thought her past was long buried, but one man's obsession could threaten her future. "A gripping, psychological mystery" - D. Donovan, Midwest Book Review The nationwide manhunt for a killer begins and the media quickly dubs him the “Highway Hunter.” Bodies...

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The Preacher’s First Murder

He was a good cop until he ran into a bad one. Then, to save what was left of his family and his sanity, Michael Hogan, Jr., entered the Fed's Witness Protection Program and became Pastor Matt Hayden. Just out of seminary, Matt takes a church in rural Texas, expecting...

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The Beholder

* AMAZON LIST OF TOP-RATED MYSTERY SERIES* AMAZON LIST OF BEST-SELLING MYSTERY SERIESMaddie Richards is an efficient and resourceful detective with a secret wish that she could handle her messy personal life as well as she handles her work life. As a homicide sergeant...

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A Trace of Death

“A dynamic story line that grips from the first chapter and doesn't let go.”--Midwest Book Review, Diane Donovan (regarding Once Gone)From #1 bestselling mystery author Blake Pierce comes a new masterpiece of psychological suspense.Keri Locke, Missing Persons...

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Spouse Trap

Imagine you have the perfect life: money, position, influence, an enviable marriage. Then you awake in a hotel room - alone, unclothed, a splitting headache, and no idea how you got there. Welcome to Madeline's world...Madeline Ridley had all she’d ever dreamed of: a...

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Hidden Danger

When Carley Sutherland receives a frantic call for help, she races to a desolate park to meet her best friend. On a dimly-lit park bench, Carley's friend fumbles in her handbag for her phone. She has a picture of a couple arguing, a picture of a woman who was later...

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The Sholes Key

All across London, single mothers are vanishing. Margaret Hill, mother of two, walks out of her house and is never seen again. A month later, Carrie-Anne Morgans takes her two-year-old son for a walk in the park and disappears, leaving him alone in his stroller. Lorna...

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Shadow Harvest

Justice with a vengeance.Imagine if your best friend went missing. How far would you go to find them?When Sydney Rye's friend and mentor, Merl, goes missing in Shanghai, she and her faithful dog, Blue, rush to the People's Republic to track him down. Following Merl's...

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Color Tour

It's a tranquil October morning in northwest lower Michigan, a rural paradise of cherry orchards, blue lakes, and sandy shorelines. The serenity of the day -- and the season -- is shattered when an elderly woman walking her dogs along the beach stumbles upon the...

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Edge of Night

New York Times & USA Today Bestselling Author Lorhainne Eckhart brings you EDGE OF NIGHT. Kate and Walker return with more high-stakes suspense and sizzling, red-hot romance.Kate Sikes has finally met who she believes is Mr. Right, only Detective Walker Pruett isn’t...

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Harm None

Penwith, the southwest tip of Cornwall, is a land of mystery and magic, of prehistoric monuments, witchcraft…and murder. When an American archaeological team stumbles upon the skeletal remains of a missing child beneath a Stone Age burial quoit, irascible CID...

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Alone

Alone . . . Massachusetts State Trooper Bobby Dodge watches a tense hostage standoff unfold through the scope of his sniper rifle. Just across the street, in wealthy Back Bay, Boston, an armed man has barricaded himself with his wife and child. The man’s finger...

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The Third Rule

He’s a CSI, an ex-father, and a drunk. Eddie Collins is about to learn what it takes to kill someone.Beating an armed street robber creates a reluctant hero in CSI Eddie Collins. Ultimately it costs him his family. With his life in ruins, the only thing of value he...

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Side Hustle

Join Darcy Walker in season one of SIDE HUSTLE, a three-part serial where she leaves the Cincinnati, Ohio, area for the bright lights and bustling action of Los Angeles, California. Crimes are darker, people are more colorful, but one thing remains the same—Darcy...

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The Art of Murder

How do you catch a killer who thinks murder is art?Michael Fisher sees himself as an artist rather than a killer and poses his victims to resemble famous paintings.  Detective Nick Kelly is called to attend the latest crime scene and finds himself at the centre of a...

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The Cutting

The first novel in the nationally bestselling McCabe and Savage series—perfect for fans of John Sandford and CJ Box.Someone is stealing the hearts of beautiful women... Detective Mike McCabe moved from a top homicide job with the NYPD to Portland, Maine to leave his...

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Bloodshed

What if a school shooter wears a mask and later discards it in order to disappear into the chaotic crowd of exiting students?  An active shooter leads John Jordan on a riveting chase into a stunning mystery.While attempting to prevent a school shooting, sheriff’s...

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Under a Raging Moon

A violent robber is loose in River City. Meet the cops that must take him down.Stefan Kopriva, a young hotshot. Katie MacLeod, a woman in what is still mostly a man’s world. Karl Winter, about to retire but with one more good bust left in him. And Thomas Chisolm, a...

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Death Report

Sergeant Brad Braun has seen more dead bodies than he’d care to remember, but a dismembered young woman with a note promising more bodies to come isn’t what he had penciled in for this Monday morning.And hers is just the beginning.The killer wants to be noticed, he...

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His First His Second

Meet Detective Sergeant Alicia Friend. She’s nice. Too nice to be a police officer, if she’s honest.Now the annoyingly-perky detective finds herself in the grip of a northern British winter, investigating the kidnap-murders of two young women. When a third is taken,...

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The Last Deception

Ready to stay up all night? Everybody's favorite assassin is back with a vengeance in this high-octane, can't-put-it-down espionage thriller. Espionage. Deception. A nation on the brink of war…Just when former assassin Leine Basso thinks she’s free from the business...

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The Third Deadly Sin

New York Times Bestseller: A retired cop hunts for a female serial killer no one would suspect in this “first-rate thriller . . . as good as you can get” (The New York Times). By day, she’s a middle-aged secretary no one would look at twice. But by night, dressed in a...

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Born Evil

WHAT WOULD YOU DO IF YOU FOUND OUT YOUR CHILD IS A PSYCHOPATH?One night when Jennifer Hanson returns home, she catches her 12-year-old son Shane stabbing their cat to death. Thankfully, he doesn't see her. Having long known Shane has a brain with psychopathic...

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In Our Blood

The first twist will stun you. The second and third will floor you. THE GAME UNFOLDS. Homicide Detective Jake Hawksworth, still reeling from the unsolved hit-and-run death of his wife, is investigating the murder of a local woman. Best-selling author Drew McCauley is...

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Dark Paradise

“Without a doubt . . . one of the most intense suspense writers around.”—Chicago Tribune New Eden, Montana, is a piece of heaven on earth where one woman died in her own private hell. Now it’s up to ex-court reporter Marilee Jennings to decipher the puzzle of her best...

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Cold Fear

In the remote, rugged corner of Montana’s Glacier National Park known as the Devil’s Grasp, little Paige Baker of San Francisco disappears with her dog, Kobee, while on a camping trip with her family; or so her mother and father have told authorities.A multi-agency...

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Cold Fear

In the remote, rugged corner of Montana’s Glacier National Park known as the Devil’s Grasp, little Paige Baker of San Francisco disappears with her dog, Kobee, while on a camping trip with her family; or so her mother and father have told authorities.A multi-agency...

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An Untamed State

A Haitian American woman survives a brutal kidnapping in this “commanding debut novel” from the New York Times–bestselling author of Bad Feminist (The New Yorker).   Author and essayist Roxane Gay is celebrated for her incisive commentary on identity and culture, as...

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If I Scream

Twenty-two years ago they had gone in search of the wilderness.The wilderness wasn't supposed to be like this.Where was she?What had happened to her parents?Who was this man?Who is she?A series of gruesome murders shakes the town.A mysterious woman is killed in a car...

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Knight & Culverhouse (Boxed Set)

Three gripping British crime thrillers — plus two EXCLUSIVE free short stories."A sensation." - The Guardian"A real success story ... Incredible." - BBC News? ? ? ? ?TOO CLOSE FOR COMFORTWhat if the serial killer you were investigating was someone you knew?DS Wendy...

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Guardian Angel

“The best of the Warshawski novels!”—Los Angeles Times Book Review   Underneath V. I. Warshawski’s wisecracking P.I. exterior lies a real pushover. When elderly neighbor Mr. Contreras asks her to look into a fellow union retiree’s sudden disappearance, she says “yes”...

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The Lads Will Have Blood

James Cornlleak is jailed for eighteen years after a dubious conviction for conspiracy to commit armed robbery. After his father fails to secure an appeal, he and a gang of estate lads take it upon themselves to prove James's innocence, but their task is far from...

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The Redbreast

“An elegant and complex thriller….Harrowingly beautiful.”—New York Times Book Review“A hugely impressive achievement—ambitious in scope, and skilled in execution.”—Los Angeles Times“The Redbreast certainly ranks with the best of current American crime...

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Maybe…The Horse Did It

Sam has patrolled the streets in McCracken's Bluff for years and thought he could handle anything. Then his friend the District Attorney is murdered and turns Sams peaceful life, upside down. The investigation takes several twists and turns as Sam deals with the...

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