Coming from British author J.M. Dalgliesh (Dalgliesh, the writer, not the detective), Hidden Norfolk is a murder mystery series set, you guessed it, in Norfolk.
This series is focusing on the investigations led by DI Tom Janssen and his team that are described as “dark murder mysteries peppered with humor and a touch of romance.” J.M. Dalgliesh is also writing the Dark Yorkshire crime series, featuring DI Nathaniel Caslin.
How to read the Hidden Norfolk Books in Order?
Every book in the Hidden Norfolk mysteries works as a standalone story, but the lives of the different characters evolve from one novel to the other.
- One Lost Soul – When a body is found on a lonely clifftop path, the angelic face of a murdered teenager lies facing the rising sun. Strangled by the hands of an unknown killer, it falls to DI Tom Janssen and his fledgling team to find out how she came to be there.
- Bury Your Past – When a violent storm uncovers the remains of an unknown young woman, long buried among the sand dunes, DI Tom Janssen must piece together fragmentary evidence to determine how she came to be there. In the years she lay undiscovered several young women have disappeared and as the team works through the possibilities they come to an uncomfortable conclusion… is a serial killer stalking coastal Norfolk?
- Kill Our Sins – When the mutilated remains of a woman are retrieved by local fishermen, it falls to DI Tom Janssen and his team to identify how she came to be in the water and what put her there. Joined on the case by his new permanent boss, DCI Tamara Greave, it remains to be proven if the woman’s death was a result of foul play or a tragic accident.
- Tell No Tales – When the body of an unidentified man is found at the foot of Sheringham cliffs with injuries inconsistent with a fall, DI Tom Janssen must piece together his final days to determine how he fell to his death… or who pushed him…The investigation quickly reveals a network of locals with ties to the victim, but as for the man himself… he remains something of a mystery.
- Hear No Evil – The celebration of the Viking Festival of Scira ensures that thousands descend annually on the small coastal town of Sheringham, but when one man dies amidst the grand finale, it falls to DI Tom Janssen and his team to identify who the victim was and how he met such a grisly end. The victim was a local man, successful, hard-working, and well-respected. A motive proves to be elusive. As the case progresses it becomes evident that not all is as it seems.
- The Dead Call – When a woman’s body is found in the sea at Blakeney Point with a single blow to the head, DI Tom Janssen and his team must work out who wanted her dead and why. What would drive someone to murder an elderly woman in such a savage and callous manner?
- Kill Them Cold – When the remains of a young woman are discovered near Branodunum, a Roman archaeological site on the Norfolk coast, DI Tom Janssen and his team must work to discover who she was and how she came to be buried there. The area is steeped in myth and folklore, a site excavated many times over the years. Just how long has she lain there… and who wishes she’d never been uncovered?
- A Dark Sin – When a local journalist is found dead in an isolated spot on Roydon Common, lying beneath a hangman’s noose on the anniversary of a teenager’s suicide, DI Tom Janssen is asked to take on the investigation as a favor to local colleagues and must unpick the deceased man’s life to discover how he came to be there.
- To Die For – When the body of a man is found dead in his remote, isolated home, DI Tom Janssen and his team struggle to understand what motive there could be to murder such an inoffensive, seemingly placid local character. The man lived alone, and was well known in the community but kept his distance from others leading a haphazard way of life. What secrets did he hide in his private life that might be worth killing for?
- Fool Me Twice – When the body of a high-profile, semi-retired barrister is found brutally murdered at his Norfolk home, DI Tom Janssen and the team must work to uncover who killed him and why. With a glittering career, spanning several decades representing the privileged and the wealthy, behind him the focus of the investigation inevitably turns toward cases and clients past and present, but was his death linked to his work or is there another, darker and far more sinister motive at play?
- The Raven Song – When the body of a young woman is discovered at the home she shared with her disabled daughter, DI Tom Janssen and his team must investigate the circumstances surrounding her death. The woman was a single mother, well regarded and popular among the group she frequented, but she had a chequered past… a life she kept secret from those around her… a life that may, ultimately, have led to her death. Friends, past lovers, and confidants offer conflicting descriptions of the deceased… did anyone know her at all?
- Angel of Death – When the partial remains of a young woman are unearthed during a violent storm, it falls to DI Tom Janssen and his team to discover her identity and what brought her there. A man is released from prison having been the apparent victim of a miscarriage of justice and returns home to rural Norfolk. Questions are being asked, not only of the police and their flawed investigation but also of the man himself. A loner, strange and disinterested, is he truly innocent? Convicted without a body, if he didn’t commit the murder he was sent to jail for, then where is she? Has a guilty man managed to evade justice and get away with murder or has a killer been hiding within the community all along?
- Dead To Me – When a man’s body is discovered crammed into the boot of an abandoned car in a remote location, DI Tom Janssen and his team must unpick his life to find out how he came to be there. The victim was a local man, popular with some although hated by others, and he had a habit of making enemies, enemies that any sane man would seek to avoid. For once, the team does not struggle to find a suspect or a motive for his murder, but with several to choose from, how can they determine who delivered the killing blows?
- Blood Runs Cold – When a man’s dismembered body is discovered at an abandoned quarry on the north Norfolk coast, DI Tom Janssen and his team must wade through his secretive life to figure out how he met his end. The victim was a quiet man, well respected by those who knew him, and someone often willing to help local charities with his free time. Presenting an image of himself to the world as a simple, inoffensive individual, he never allowed anyone close enough to look behind the mask. As his associations become clearer, the team realizes that there are others with secrets of their own… but are they willing to kill to keep them that way?
If you like our article about the Hidden Norfolk reading order, don’t forget to bookmark it! You may be interested in JD Kirk’s DCI Logan series.