Mark Billingham Books In Order

Tom Thorne Books In Publication Order

  1. Sleepyhead (2001)
  2. Scaredy Cat (2001)
  3. Lazybones (2003)
  4. The Burning Girl (2004)
  5. Lifeless (2005)
  6. Buried (2006)
  7. Death Message (2007)
  8. Bloodline (2009)
  9. From The Dead (2010)
  10. Good as Dead / The Demands (2011)
  11. The Dying Hours (2013)
  12. Thorne at Christmas: A Short Story Collection (2013)
  13. The Bones Beneath (2014)
  14. Time of Death (2015)
  15. Love Like Blood (2017)
  16. The Killing Habit (2018)
  17. Their Little Secret (2019)
  18. Cry Baby (2020)

Triskellion Books In Publication Order

  1. Triskellion (2008)
  2. The Burning (2009)
  3. The Gathering (2010)

Standalone Novels In Publication Order

  1. Knight School (1998)
  2. In the Dark (2008)
  3. Rush of Blood (2012)
  4. Die of Shame (2016)
  5. Cut Off (2018)
  6. Rabbit Hole (2021)

Short Story Collections In Publication Order

  1. Dancing Towards the Blade and Other Stories (2013)

Non-Fiction Books In Publication Order

  1. Great Lost Albums (With: David Quantick,Martyn Waites,Stav Sherez) (2014)

Anthologies In Publication Order

  1. Like a Charm (2004)
  2. Criminal Tendencies (2009)
  3. The Killer Cookbook (2012)
  4. Inherit the Dead (2013)
  5. Crime Writers: A Decade of Crime (2016)
  6. Dead Simple (2017)

Tom Thorne Book Covers

Triskellion Book Covers

Standalone Novels Book Covers

Short Story Collections Book Covers

Non-Fiction Book Covers

Anthologies Book Covers

Mark Billingham Books Overview


Dear Detective Inspector Thorne. What can I say? Practice makes perfect. And don’t you just envy her that perfect…
distance? I invite you to consider the concept of freedom. True freedom. Have you ever really considered it? I’m sorry about the others. Truly. I shall not insult your intelligence with platitudes about ends and means but offer in mitigation the thought that a massive undertaking often has an appropriate margin of error. It’s all about pressure, Detective Inspector Thorne, but then you’d know all about that. Seriously, though, Tom, maybe I’ll call you sometime. Mark Billingham’s arresting debut novel Sleepyhead, an international bestseller, is a mesmerizing, psychological thriller. Tense and unnerving, this menacing tale of obsession is as scathingly witty as it is bone chilling, and it introduces a stunning new talent in detective fiction. Alison Willetts is unlucky to be alive. She has survived a deliberately induced stroke, and although she can see, hear, and feel, she is completely unable to move or to communicate. In leaving Alison alive, the police believe her assailant has made his first mistake. Until Detective Inspector Tom Thorne discovers the horrifying truth: Alison is the psychopath’s first success; the three women he killed before her were the mistakes. ‘An appropriate margin of error’ is how their killer dismissed them; his true intention was to leave them just like Alison: put to sleep for the rest of their natural lives. And Thorne knows they won’t be his last victims. To save innocent lives, he must find a criminal whose agenda is terrifyingly unique. But this untraceable, sad*istic madman is smart, elusive, and cryptic he enjoys toying with the police almost as much as he savors pursuing his sick fantasy and the only lead Thorne has is the tragically uncommunicative Alison. Sensational, sinister, and sophisticated, Sleepyhead is a twisted take on the contemporary crime novel, and with it Mark Billingham reveals an extraordinary depth and range of talent. Impeccably plotted and remarkably assured, Billingham’s debut marks the start of a brilliant career.

Scaredy Cat

Mark Billingham’s Sleepyhead was called ‘an exceptional debut’ by George Pelecanos, lauded for its ‘strong…
display of macabre creativity’ by the New York Times, and singled out by USA Today as featuring ‘some of the creepiest serial killers to be found between the pages of a book.’ Now Billingham returns with Scaredy Cat. It was a calculated, vicious murder. The killer selected his victim at Euston station, followed her home on the tube, and then strangled her to death in front of her child. At the same time the dead woman is found, a second body is discovered at the back of King’s Cross station killed in identical fashion. It is a grisly coincidence that eerily echoes the murders of two other women, both stabbed to death months before on the same day. Introduced in Sleepyhead, Detective Inspector Tom Thorne sees the link and comes to the horrifying conclusion that it is not one serial killer the police are up against: it is two of them. Now each time a body is found, Thorne must live with the knowledge that somewhere out there is a second victim, waiting to be discovered. But while the methods might be the same, the killers are very different one submissive and terrified, the other ruthless and in control. To stop them both, Thorne must catch a man whose need to manipulate is as great as his need to kill; a man who will threaten those closest to Thorne himself; a man who will show him that the ability to inspire terror is the deadliest weapon of all.


Thorne knew when he was looking at something out of the ordinary. This was a significant murder scene. This was the work of a killer driven by something special, something spectacular…
He looked at the dead man on the bed the position of him, as if he were praying…
Thorne guessed that at the end, he probably had been. The body is found in the grubbiest of North London hotel rooms. Kneeling, naked on a bare mattress, the head is hooded and the hands tied tight with a brown leather belt. And then there’s the oddest detail of all: the call from the florist to check arrangements about the wreath…
It’s been only ten days since convicted rapist Douglas Remfry was released from prison. Someone knew he was coming out. Someone wanted to hand out some punishment of his own. When a second sex offender is discovered dead, the police believe they have a vicious, calculating vigilante on their hands. But how does the killer lure his victims to their deaths? Who do the victims think they are going to meet in these hotel rooms? And then the police find the letters…
Detective Inspector Tom Thorne always works best when his emotions are involved in the case, when his anger flares him into action but he’s having trouble finding any sympathy for the dead. It is only as his investigation continues that Thorne finally discovers a victim worth fighting for, a victim whose identity becomes crucial to cracking this most twisted of cases…
From its chilling opening to its shocking climax, Lazybones confirms Mark Billingham’s place as one of today’s master storytellers and is certain to be one of the most thrilling and talked about suspense novels of the year.

The Burning Girl

Jessica Clarke had been set alight twenty years ago. Her attacker, quickly tracked down and eager to confess, was still in jail, his career as a hitman for North London gangs now well behind him. So who is harassing Carol Chamberlain, the arresting officer in that case, and claiming that he is the one who burned the girl? Now retired, Carol turns to DI Tom Thorne for help. He’s up to his neck in an investigation into a series of killings, which appears to be the result of a turf war between rival gangs, and he’s fed up to the gills with reporting to DCI Tughan, so helping Carol out looks like a good deed in a naughty world. Only the world is about to turn much nastier, so nasty in fact that he finds himself longing for a straightforward psycopath to hunt down. In Mark Billingham’s fourth novel, he explores the effects of violence and greed on the lives of those who exploit their fellow beings in a novel of exceptional power.


Tom Thorne’s career is on the skids. Having seriously crossed the line on his last case and depressed over the recent suspicious death of his father, the once ambitious police detective has been reduced to pushing papers…
and is being encouraged to take a prolonged leave of duty. But someone is stalking the city’s most destitute citizens. Three homeless men have recently been kicked to death, each brutalized corpse discovered with a banknote pinned to its chest. With nothing to lose, Thorne volunteers to try to find the killer taking to the streets he knows so well from his days as beat policeman and as a homicide detective, but this time joining the squalid ranks of life’s rejects. In this harsh and harrowing netherworld, with its own rules and moral codes, a shocking link between the brutal crimes and a fifteen year old atrocity could end up costing Thorne what little life he has left.


Luke Mullen, the missing teenage son of a former police officer, was last seen getting into a car with an older woman. No one knows whether he went willingly or was abducted, whether he’s living or dead.

Then the videotape arrives…

On special assignment, Detective Inspector Tom Thorne is in charge of the investigation into Luke’s disappearance. But it’s the information that Tony Mullen, the boy’s father, is not freely sharing that Thorne finds particularly disturbing like the names of dangerous criminals who have openly threatened the tough ex detective and his entire family. Something shocking and deadly may well be Buried deep in old cases and past lives. But Thorne knows he doesn’t have the luxury of time to dig especially when a kidnapper brutally demonstrates that he is willing to kill.

Death Message

Thorne looked at the picture, feeling the pulse quicken at the side of his neck. There were times when he couldn’t see what was staring him in the face, but this, for better or worse, was his area of expertise. Thorne knew a dead man when he saw him. Delivering the ‘Death Message.’ That’s what cops call those harrowing moments when they must tell someone that a loved one has been killed. Now Detective Investigator Tom Thorne is receiving messages of his own: photographs of murder victims sent to his cell phone. Who are the victims? Who is sending the photographs? And why is he sending them to Tom Thorne? The answer lies in the detective investigator’s past, with a man he had once sent to prison for life. But even behind bars, the most dangerous psychopath Thorne has ever faced is still a master at manipulating others to do his dirty work for him. And Thorne must act fast because the photos keep on coming, and the killer’s next target is someone the detective investigator knows very well…


A killer is on the loose. The victims: children whose mothers can’t protect them. The past is coming back to haunt the people of London: a murderer is targeting the children of victims of Raymond Garvey, an infamous serial killer from London’s past. When Murder Squad veteran Detective Tom Thorne, who solves the London Police Department’s most difficult cases, is called into what seems like, for once, an ordinary domestic murder, he thinks he’s caught a break. A woman has been murdered by someone she knows. A positive pregnancy test found on the floor beside her. Thorne plans to question the husband, arrest him and return home to deal with his own deteriorating personal life. But when a mysterious sliver of bloodstained X ray that was found clutched in the victim’s fist is replicated at other crime scenes around the city, Thorne realizes that this is not a simple case. As the bits of X ray begin to come together to form a picture, it becomes clear that the killer knows his prey all too well and is moving through a list that was started long ago. As Thorne attempts to protect those still alive, nothing and nobody are what they seem. Not when Thorne is dealing with one of the most twisted killers he has ever hunted.

From The Dead

When Donna Langford receives a very recent photo of her ex husband in the post, she gets the shock of her life. Because she’s just spent ten years in prison for organising his murder. When her daughter goes missing, Donna believes there can only be one man responsible and hires Anna Carpenter, a determined young private investigator, to find him. DI Tom Thorne worked on the Alan Langford case, so when Carpenter brings the photo to him, he refuses to believe that the man whose body was found in a burned out car ten years before can still be alive. But when a prison inmate that he and Anna interview is viciously murdered, Thorne starts to understand that Langford is not only alive, but ready to get rid of anyone who could threaten his comfortable new life in Spain…

Time of Death

Audio CD, HighBridge Audio


First in a thrilling supernatural trilogy! ‘Breathless…
. Suspenseful.’ Kirkus Reviews

A sense of foreboding sets in the moment fourteen year old twins Rachel and Adam arrive from New York to visit their English grandmother. The station is empty, village streets are deserted, locals are hostile, and even their frail Granny Root is oddly distant. And who is the strange boy, Gabriel, who speaks to them telepathically, and what about the bees that appear to follow a mysterious force? It all seems tied up with the Triskellion a symbol etched in chalk on the moors and an ancient feud that keeps villagers warily apart. With a growing sense of danger, the twins must unearth a secret that has protected the village for centuries, one that reveals a shocking truth about their ancestors and themselves.

The Burning

As twins Rachel and Adam are pursued across Europe by terrifying forces, they realize they can trust no one and must draw on their special
powers to survive.

After the shocking revelations in Triskellion, being guests of the ‘Hope Project’ might seem like a relief. But Rachel and Adam soon figure out that they re being held prisoner, and that the program has more sinister goals than archaeological research in mind. A hideous discovery at the funeral of their grandmother makes it clear that the teenagers must flee from England to Paris, Seville, and fi nally Morocco, evading not only their former benefactors but also the followers of ‘The Englishman,’ a zombie like fi gure with a frightening agenda of his own. It will take all of their special abilities and courage to stay alive until their journey reaches an explosive climax and they unearth, on the North African coast, an ancient secret even more startling than the first.

The Gathering

The heart pounding conclusion to the supernatural Triskellion trilogy!After escaping the Australian Outback and the nefarious agents of the ill named Hope Organization Rachel and Adam have fled to the United States in hopes of locating their father. Luck is evading them, however, until they follow the clues in the note their Granny Root left them, leading straight to a military base in Alamogordo, New Mexico. Meanwhile, their mother is facing charges of murder in Oklahoma, even as Dr. Laura Sullivan speeds to New Mexico to snatch the kids from the clutches of the Hope Organization. Will Rachel and Adam discover the third and final triskellion before it’s too late?

In the Dark

A Deadly Crash

A rainy night in south London. A gun is fired into a car, which swerves onto the pavement and plows into a bus stop. It seems that a chilling gang initiation has cost the life of an innocent victim. But the reality is far more sinister…

A Dangerous Quest

One life is wiped out and three more are changed forever: the young man whose finger was on the trigger, the ageing gangster planning a deadly revenge, and the pregnant woman who struggles desperately to uncover the truth. How will she, two weeks away from giving birth, now cope in a world where death is an occupational hazard?

A Shocking Twist

In a city where violence can be random or meticulously planned, where teenage gangs clash with career criminals and where loyalty is paid for in blood, nything is possible. Secrets are uncovered as fast as bodies, and the story’s final twist is as breathtakingly surprising as they come.

Mark Billingham’s first stand alone thriller, In the Dark is his most powerful novel yet. Gritty, fierce, and moving, here is a must read for anyone who likes their crime fiction unflinching and unforgettable.

Like a Charm

Desire leaves a man destroyed…
A young girl’s curiosity reveals secrets better left hidden…
Jealousy drives a woman mad…
An obsession with numbers precipitates a deadly revenge…
Ambition leads to a curious exchange…
An uncanny likeness changes two lives forever…
The hand of fate lies buried in the past…

An unforgettable novel in seventeen parts by some of the most prestigious crime writers working today.

One bracelet, seventeen charms…

From nineteenth century Georgia, where the bracelet is forged in fire, to wartime Leeds, the seedy underside of London’s Soho, a Manhattan taxi, the frozen cliffs of Nova Scotia, and back to Georgia, each writer weaves a gripping story of murder, betrayal, and intrigue.

Criminal Tendencies

Val McDermid, Reginald Hill, and Peter James are just some of the 24 top selling crime writers who have contributed stories to Criminal Tendencies, an exciting new crime short collection. Alongside the big names will be stories from first time authors Chris Nickson and Caroline Shiach, winners of Criminal Tendencies 2009, Creme de la Crime’s latest international search for new crime writing talent.

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