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Digital Subscriptions > Writing Magazine > July 2017 > CRIME FILE


Chris Simms combines two ongoing series in his latest novel.He explains how, to Chris High

Chris Simms’ ninth Jon Spicer novel, Death Games, is a masterclass in storytelling, with tight descriptive prose and more twists than a 1950s dance track. It also brings Spicer together with Chris’ other protagonist chief, Detective Constable Iona Khan.

‘A few factors came into play in deciding these two should work together in Death Games,’ the Manchester based author explains. ‘I wrote Khan to be the opposite of Spicer – physically and, to an extent, mentally. Jon is a hulking great brute, she almost qualifies to play a hobbit; she’s just over five feet tall. He likes to act first and think later; she likes to hold back and assess. He enjoys sparring with his colleagues in the police station gym; she’s more likely to challenge them to chess. When it occurred to me how fascinating it would be to see them in the same novel, part of me wondered why I hadn’t thought of it before. That opportunity came when Spicer burned his last bridge in the Major Incident Team at the end of Sleeping Dogs. Thinking his career in the police was over, Jon is in the mother of all sulks… until the call from the Counter Terrorism Unit comes and a move in his career comes about.’

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About Writing Magazine

How do you follow up one of the biggest books of the decade? The Girl on the Train author Paula Hawkins tells us about changing tracks and writing the book that matters to you in our star interview. What do editors want? There can't be anyone in a better position to tell you than debut novelist Anna Pitoniak, who worked as a Big Five editor before landing her book deal. How is your year's writing plan going? As 2017 hits the halfway mark, we help you stay on target. Look for leads, find the most up-to-date markets for your work and enter the latest writing competitions, with more than £50,000 in writing prizes, in the Writers' News pages, packed with news you can use.

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