Insidious Intent

Number one bestseller, Val McDermid returns with her pulse-pounding, suspenseful new novel featuring two of the most distinctive and iconic characters in crime fiction: Tony Hill and Carol Jordan.

When charred human remains are discovered in the driver’s seat of a burning car, DCI Carol Jordan and psychological profiler Tony Hill are brought in to investigate. They soon discover that what appeared to be a terrible acciden TT is, in fact, murder. Delving deeper into the case, they begin the dangerous hunt for a most sinister killer with the power to inflict untold fear and pain on their victims…
Discover the latest thrilling novel from the inimitable Queen of Crime, Val McDermid


‘This is McDermid’s most expressive and emotional novel to date, giving readers more than just a clever criminal to get their teeth into. It is particularly good to learn more about Hill and Jordan’s supporting cast but the duo remain the passionate heart of the story.’ – The National

‘The novel is beautifully crafted in short pithy chapters that shine the spotlight on the murderer, his thought processes and hyper-careful and brilliant methodologies.’ – the Arts Desk

‘With more than 15 million books sold, Val McDermid, known as the queen of psychological thrillers, surpasses herself here, delivering one of the most surprising twists you’ll read this year. Outstanding’ – Irish Independent

‘We read novels for pleasure, and Insidious Intent is thoroughly pleasing, engaging, indeed compelling, a very fine piece of craftmanship. It will reward those who have followed the Jordan and Hill sequence, and send latecomers back to the earlier novels.’ – The Scotsman

‘Elegantly plotted, it’s pure class.’ – Sunday Mirror

Insidious Intent offers a macabre twist on the film Wedding Crashers with a serial killer infiltrating nuptials to prey on single women. It lacks the inventive nastiness of some of the previous volumes, but that allows some of McDermid’s subtler and more satisfying storytelling skills to shine.’ – Sunday Express

‘One of crime fiction’s most eminent writers returns with another intricately plotted thriller.’ –Entertainment Weekly

‘The narcissistic, controlled killer is engaging quarry and McDermid’s procedural details are as on point as ever. But, as usual, this story’s true center is the evolution of Tony and Carol’s relationship as the pair questions each other’s strong interdependence, and Tony fights to pull Carol back from a path of self-destruction. The final twist is both shocking and fitting, a must-read for series fans.’ – Booklist

‘Val McDermid presents a convincing portrait of a woman pushed into a searingly painful downward spiral by her own demons as well as the machinations of other. The police work is as convincing as ever, carrying the usual sharp ring of authenticity, proving yet again, if needed, that McDermid is still at the top of her game. Insidious Intent is a police thriller of the very highest quality.’ – Crime Review

‘The modern-day Queen of Crime keeps vaulting at and over the incredibly high bar she’s set herself over the past three decades. McDermid puts both her characters and the reader through the emotional wringer with Insidious Intent. The tenth novel in a series spanning 22 years, it’s both a terrific individual read and a culmination of ongoing character arcs throughout the books. McDermid is a maestro still at the top of her game, and adroitly balances shock and inevitability as events for beloved characters take a dark turn.’ – Mystery Scene

‘McDermid is at the top of her game here, with a great premise and engaging cast of characters developed over the course of this long, popular series.’ – Literary Hub

Insidious Intent is a bold gamble that has the potential to shake long-cherished characters from their emotional complacency. At her best, McDermid has an agile, curious mind, adept at plumbing the psyches of diverse characters with insight and sensitivity.’ – Los Angeles Times

‘It is clever, involving, brilliantly emotional writing that also encompasses a lot of thought provoking real life issues – in Insidious Intent yes, but also in every novel written, even those not featuring Carol and Tony – so you are entertained, challenged in your thinking and ultimately hugely satisfied if not a little wrung out. Definitely a little wrung out.’ – Liz Loves Books

‘The Queen of Scottish crime isn’t thinking of abdicating her throne any time soon if this book is anything to go by. A masterclass in crime writing, with a shocking final twist’ – Crime Fiction Lover

‘The ending will take your breath away. Val McDermid plots so well and, once again, has brought these wonderful characters and another terrific story to the reader. Highly recommended’ – Love Books, Read Books