Saturday’s Telegraph Review had a list of Fifty Crime Writers to Read before you Die as they rather sinisterly put it. Pleased to see my favourites Sayers and Allingham so highly rated and P D James left out. I’ve read very few of these authors and am slightly ashamed that I’ve never read any Raymond Chandler. I’d like to add another writer to the list: Susan Hill. I haven’t read many of her books but after reading The Pure in Heart, her second Simon Serrailler novel, I was hooked on the series. The books are set in middle England, the characters are interesting, the author’s social commentary wise. What grabs me about them is that I have never read any crime fiction which is so victim-centred. The reader is left in no doubt that murder is an evil crime with far reaching consequences for all whom it touches. Very different from the high-body-count, solve-the-puzzle fiction which can be very enjoyable but is much less engaging. I found myself lying awake at night thinking about the events in these books: you have been warned.