Midas takes on international no 1 bestseller, Simon Beckett for his latest novel ‘The Scent of Death’
With 10 million copies of his books previously sold, international no 1bestselling author, Simon Beckett, presents a menacing new crime thriller, The Scent of Death – set to make your spine tingle.
The David Hunter novels are currently in development for television with Cuba Pictures and Nadcon.
Praise for Simon Beckett
“Beckett is one of the country’s best crime writers… His books are intelligent, beautifully written and utterly gripping.” Sunday Express
“The forensics are chillingly authentic, the writing is both taut and beautifully atmospheric.” Ann Cleeves
“Atmospheric… a tense, gripping read.” Sunday Times
“Strong, pungent writing is Beckett’s forte, lethal mind-games that are not for the squeamish.” The Times
The Scent of Death
Forensic expert Dr David Hunter is enjoying an easy-going summer, pleased with both his stable, happy relationship and renewed status as a police consultant who is very much in demand. Even the threat of Grace Strachan – the woman who tried to murder Hunter after breaking into his flat – has been placed in the past.
But Hunter’s peace is disturbed once again when he receives a call from an old associate, DCI Sharon Ward. A partially mummified corpse has been discovered at St Jude’s Hospital in North London. Awaiting demolition, the empty hospital’s only visitors are those left behind by society – outcasts, addicts and dealers. Hunter’s forensic expertise concludes the body is of a pregnant young woman. But for how long she has been left is unknown.
‘When a floor of the hospital collapses, it reveals many other dark secrets. A sealed-off chamber is discovered with beds still inside and some of them occupied. As the investigation unfolds, one thing is certain: St Jude’s hasn’t claimed its last victim. What starts as a straightforward case twists to become a nightmare that threatens Hunter and everyone around him.
About Simon Beckett
Joint winner of the European Crime Fiction Star Award 2018/19, novelist Simon Beckett has also worked as a freelance journalist for national newspapers and magazines. With over 10 million books sold worldwide, and a multiple no 1 bestseller in Germany, Simon Beckett continues to draw in audiences in their millions. The first in the series and a million-copy best seller, The Chemistry of Death, was shortlisted for the UK’s premier crime-writing awards and the 2006 Gold Dagger Award. Simon Beckett has also written five psychological standalone thrillers. His internationally bestselling standalone novels include Stone Bruises and Where There’s Smoke. The David Hunter novels are in development for television with Cuba Pictures and Nadcon.
The research behind The Scent of Death
Working as a freelance journalist in 2002, Simon Beckett visited the Body Farm in Knoxville, Tennessee for an article about crime scene training for US police officers. At the time, the research facility was the only place in the world to use human cadavers to investigate the process of human decomposition. Using real human bodies, the site aimed to give police officers the most visceral experience of what working with the dead was like. Both harrowed and marvelled by the experience, Simon was left feeling there was more than just a feature article in it.
Alongside the development of the tortured character of David Hunter, Simon began to write The Chemistry of Death, informed by his experience at Body Far in Knoxville. The novel went on to become translated into 29 languages and thus began the infamous Dr Hunter series. While Beckett’s experiences in journalism have contributed to the authenticity of his novels, Beckett also frequently speaks to both UK and US based forensic anthropologists to inform any forensic ambiguity he may have.
While authenticity is essential for Beckett, character and psychological motivations are also hugely important factors to his writing process. Beckett is a huge fan of Raymond Chandler’s Philip Marlowe series and John D. MacDonald’s Travis McGee books. Their flawed and complex characters were instrumental in contributing to the development of Dr David Hunter, rather than opting for the stereotypical heavy-drinking, maverick tough-guy as his main character.