At the Sharp End . . .
News from Zoë Sharp and Charlie Fox
Summer 2017

FOX HUNTER—brand new Charlie Fox novel!
Fox Hunter UK
I know you’ve had to wait for this one, but at last it’s here—FOX HUNTER: book 12 in the Charlie Fox series, the follow-up to ABSENCE OF LIGHT. Out in the US in Aug 2017, and all other territories on Sept 12th. A new challenge for Charlie, revisiting a time in her life she’d rather forget.
'The dead man had not gone quietly … There was a time when I would have given everything I owned to be the one responsible for that.'
Charlie Fox will never forget the men who put a brutal end to her military career, but she vowed a long time ago she would not go looking for them.
Now she doesn’t have a choice.
Her boss and former lover, Sean Meyer, is missing in Iraq where one of those men was working as a private security contractor. When the man’s butchered body is discovered, Charlie fears that Sean may be pursuing a twisted vendetta on her behalf.
Sean’s partner in their exclusive New York close-protection agency needs this dealt with—fast and quiet—before everything they’ve worked for is in ruins. He sends Charlie to the Middle East with very specific instructions:
Find Sean Meyer and stop him. By whatever means necessary.
At one time Charlie thought she knew Sean better than she knew herself, but it seems he’s turned into a violent stranger. As the trail grows more bloody, Charlie realises that unless she can get to Sean first, the hunter may soon become the hunted.
… and great reviews
Initial reaction to FOX HUNTER has been most encouraging, with plenty of very great reviews from readers, as well as these two from the press:
"Gritty, hard-hitting, all-around outstanding crime fiction." Booklist (starred review)
"Nonstop action and an intricate plot weave together to create another thrill ride for fans of Sharp's heroine." Kirkus

An Italian Job
In case you missed it, last summer I co-wrote a novella with espionage thriller writer, John Lawton, called AN ITALIAN JOB.
'Love is deadlier the second time around.'
Ginger and Jack are both former soldiers from the Balkan wars of the 1990s. Time, chance and bloodshed force them apart.
Twenty years later, chance brings them back together—older, possibly wiser certainly richer. Jack has never married … Ginger has … And the one obstacle in their way is her ex-husband Franco.
This is a crime novella about loyalty, betrayal, love and revenge, with action stretching from the Balkan Wars to modern-day Tuscany, from the glaciers of Iceland to the deceptively calm waters of the Mediterranean.

Shorter Bites
I've been busy on a few shorter works since my last newsletter:
  • My short story ‘Kill Me Again Slowly’, a Charlie Fox tale where she faces the most unusual bodyguarding job of her career, appeared in MURDER UNDER THE OAKS, edited by Art Taylor, which won the Anthony Award at last year’s Bouchercon event for Best Collection.
  • I was one of the contributors to the CRIME + MUSIC anthology, which contained twenty-one stories of music-themed noir, written by musicians and crime writers and edited by Jim Fusilli. My story, ‘Earworms’, is based around the genuine playlist of music used to torture detainees, and the ongoing effects on one particular perpetrator.
  • Another Charlie Fox short story, ‘Risk Assessment’, appeared in issue 51 of The Strand magazine earlier this year, which was a real honour.
  • Coming up, I’ve written a post-Brexit privatised police force story, ‘Caught On Camera’ for the CrimeFest 10th anniversary anthology, TEN YEAR STRETCH, which will be out for the anniversary event in May 2018.
  • Later in the year, ‘Hounded’ is my take on the famous Sherlock Holmes tale, THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES, but with some definite twists and, of course, featuring Charlie Fox. This is for the third anthology of stories inspired by the work of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, called FOR THE SAKE OF THE GAME, and edited by Laurie R King and Les Klinger.
  • And finally, Richard Brewer and Gary Phillips are putting together an intriguing book called CULPRITS, where they set up a heist and then the other contributors have to tell the story of what happens to the characters after it all goes wrong. My contribution is what happens to ‘The Wife’. Can’t wait to read the rest.

On the Road
  • Over the summer I’ve been to CrimeFest in Bristol, as well as doing a couple of Noir @ The Bar events, in Newcastle Upon Tyne and at the Harrogate Festival, where the audience had a sneak peek at FOX HUNTER. I also did a workshop for the Portsmouth Writers’ Hub on plotting your crime thriller.
  • In September I’ll be doing another Noir @ The Bar, this time in Morecambe at the Winter Gardens on Friday, Sept 29th from 6pm-7pm. Authors will have a three-minute slot to read from their work, so come along for a pint and a listen if you’re in the area.
  • The following day, Saturday, Sept 30th I’m taking part in the inaugural Morecambe & Vice Crime Writing Festival, also being held at the Winter Gardens. I’m on the panel ‘Local Legends—I Did It My Way’ with other local authors AS Chambers and Beth Jones, and moderated by Kevin Wignall. The event starts at 9:45am, and the Local Legends panel is on at 10:15am.
  • Then in October, another Noir @ The Bar, slightly further afield this time, in Toronto Canada. This event takes place on Oct 11th at Rivoli at 334 Queen Street West, Toronto, from 9pm until late.

Bouchercon and Beyond
That leads into Bouchercon 2017 at the Sheraton Centre in Toronto, from Oct 12th-15th. I’m delighted to be on two panels on Friday, Oct 13th there.
  • 8:30am-9:30am ‘The Liars’ Panel’ You’re good at solving mysteries, but how are you at detecting the truth? Test your skills against our prevaricating panel. Danny Gardner, Reece Hirsch, Karin Salvalaggio, Zoë Sharp, Johnny Shaw (Moderating) and Diane Vallere.
  • 2pm-3pm ‘Tough Guys ‘n Gals’ A panel of gritty characters. Colin Campbell (Moderating), Nick Cutter, KJ Howe, Ross Pennie, Zoë Sharp, Tina Whittle.
Directly after Bouchercon, I’ll be heading to Chicago IL to do a joint event with John Lawton at Centuries & Sleuths Bookstore at 7419 Madison St, Forest Park IL 60130. This event is on Tuesday, Oct 17th from 7pm until 9pm.
There should be some more appearances in the States during October, but I’ll be sure to post them on my website as soon as they’re confirmed.

Blogging On
I’m sorting out a blog tour for FOX HUNTER, starting with pieces on Marshal Zeringue’s various sites:
And there are others in the pipeline. I'll keep you posted on my blog and on Facebook.

Bedside Table
I confess I haven’t had a great deal of time to read for pleasure lately, but I did get a chance to enjoy Lee Child’s latest, NIGHT SCHOOL, which has Reacher once again join forces with Frances Neagley back when both were still in the military. Also Rosie Claverton’s TERROR 404 about the abuse of vulnerable adults, and Susan Wolfe’s ESCAPE VELOCITY, which has the daughter of a veteran conman apply her unique talents to problem solving in the corporate world. I also re-read and enjoyed THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES, for my short story, and am currently reading HORSE SOLDIERS by Doug Stanton, the story of US Special Forces soldiers who rode to war against the Taliban.
What have you been reading over the summer? Let me know on Facebook or Twitter.

Zoe Sharp

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