Grove Press
Atlantic Monthly Press
Grove Press

Broken Ground

A Karen Pirie Novel

by Val McDermid

From internationally bestselling crime author Val McDermid comes a shocking new Karen Pirie novel about a mysterious corpse and a fight for the truth

  • Imprint Grove Paperback
  • Page Count 448
  • Publication Date December 03, 2019
  • ISBN-13 978-0-8021-4774-5
  • Dimensions 5.5" x 8.25"
  • US List Price $16.00
  • Imprint Atlantic Monthly Press
  • Page Count 432
  • Publication Date December 04, 2018
  • ISBN-13 978-0-8021-2912-3
  • Dimensions 6" x 9"
  • US List Price $26.00
  • Imprint Grove Paperback
  • Publication Date December 04, 2018
  • ISBN-13 978-0-8021-4693-9
  • US List Price $0.00

Internationally bestselling author Val McDermid is one of our finest crime writers, and her gripping, masterfully plotted novels have garnered millions of readers from around the globe. In Broken Ground, cold case detective Karen Pirie faces her hardest challenge yet.

Six feet under in a Highland peat bog lies Alice Somerville’s inheritance, buried by her grandfather at the end of World War II. But when Alice finally uncovers it, she finds an unwanted surprise—a body with a bullet hole between the eyes. Meanwhile, DCI Pirie is called in to unravel a case where nothing is quite as it seems. And as she gets closer to the truth, it becomes clear that not everyone shares her desire for justice. Or even the idea of what justice is.

An engrossing, twisty thriller, Broken Ground reaffirms Val McDermid’s place as one of the best crime writers of her generation.

Praise for Broken Ground

“You can read a lot of police procedurals. You can read a lot of police procedurals set in the United Kingdom. You can read a lot of police procedurals set in the United Kingdom that feature female protagonists. But you won’t read any police procedurals set in the United Kingdom featuring a female protagonist that are better than the ones Val McDermid writes, and that’s because her DCI Karen Pirie books manage to balance all of the above elements—and more—with great compassion and elegance.”—NPR

“[A] relentlessly engrossing series.”—Wall Street Journal

“Expertly plotted . . . McDermid’s affinity for multilayered plots and complex characters continues to excel in Broken Ground.”—Associated Press

“McDermid’s books are relentlessly excellent, with sympathetically flawed characters, well-crafted storylines, a clever twist or two, and crisp dialogue. It’s no wonder she’s considered the queen of Scottish crime fiction.”—BookPage 

“Val McDermid seamlessly weaves multiple mysteries, modern forensics, and old grudges into one story that practically trembles from the narrative tension. Broken Ground is another smart procedural from an expert of the form.”—Kristen Lepionka, author of the Roxane Weary mystery series

“As always, McDermid’s story lines are as richly layered as her protagonist.”—Publishers Weekly

“What is left to be said in praise of Val McDermid? After 32 novels, she is a master of her craft and has earned her place in the exclusive group of crime writers who have been awarded the UK’s Cartier Diamond Dagger for lifetime achievement . . . McDermid moves the reader deftly back and forth in time as her dab hand allows the indomitable Pirie to ‘bring the dead home.’”—Booklist (starred review)

“Pirie is a satisfyingly wry and hard-edged character, and McDermid’s dry tone heightens the growing suspense.”—Guardian (UK)

“Val McDermid’s DCI Karen Pirie is a realistic figure, rooted in research and acting in accordance with the law. She is one of McDermid’s most appealing sleuths . . . McDermid writes with warmth and authority, building Karen’s cases with conviction and making the reader root for her in every possible way.  You know you’re in safe hands from the first page.”—BookOxygen

“This is Val McDermid, so it will be both gripping and unputdownable.”—The Bookseller (UK)

“There’s a reason readers around the world look forward to a new book by the ‘queen of crime’ and Val McDermid’s legions of fans will not be disappointed with this one… McDermid never puts a foot wrong. Her prose is so clear and engaging, this is a book that will keep you turning pages. Like Pirie, you will be hungry for just that one more bit of evidence.”—Crime Fiction Lover

“McDermid’s novels about cold cases have solid plots and fascinating forensic detail.”—Sunday Times (UK)  

Praise for Out of Bounds

“A thriller as steely and superlative as its heroine” —O, The Oprah Magazine

“Tightly plotted . . . McDermid applies her formidable intelligence and muscular style to the kind of urban crime novel that gives Scotland its tough rep and vigorous lingo . . . It’s the brawny characters and their beefy dialect that really keep us coming back to this superior series.”— New York Times Book Review

“No one writes sturdier mysteries than Val McDermid.”— Chicago Tribune

“There are few other crime writers in the same league as Val McDermid. Her stories are ingeniously plotted, moody . . . Absorbing . . . It’s Karen’s character that’s the enduring draw of this series . . . Out of Bounds is another terrific and intricate suspense novel by a writer who has given us 30 of them.”— Washington Post

“[McDermid] balances the intense character studies in Out of Bounds with an inside view of the Scottish legal system and again shows her acuity in producing intelligent thrillers.” —Associated Press

“McDermid gives us the female heroine that doesn’t fit the mould, and in the best way.”— National Post (Canada)

“None is more deserving of the queen-of-crime mantle than Val McDermid . . . I would like to see a great deal more of DCI Pirie.”— Irish Times