The Long Call by Ann Cleeves

Ann Cleeves receiving the Outstanding Contribution Award at the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Awards 2023, alongside Crime Novel of the Year recipient M.W. Craven. Photo Credit: Charlotte Graham.

We are thrilled to share that The Long Call by Ann Cleeves is our September pick for the HIF Book of the Month!

The Long Call was selected as the chosen book for this year’s Big Read, the North’s biggest book club which toured libraries across Yorkshire and the North East to celebrate crime fiction and re-engage readers with their local libraries. The free events were hosted by Luca Veste, the author of numerous crime books and the 2023 Reader-in-Residence at Harrogate International Festivals, and took place between 26-30 June.

Veste discussed The Long Call by Ann Cleeves, the author of the hit series featuring detective Vera Stanhope and the inspiration behind the much-loved TV drama Vera, starring Brenda Blethyn. The Long Call was carefully selected to appeal to readers who are perhaps unfamiliar with the books genre but engaged with TV shows like Vera, with a view to encouraging them to engage with a series that has multiple titles available to them afterwards.

Ann Cleeves was also the recipient of the Outstanding Contribution Award at this year’s Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival. On receiving the award, Cleeves said: “The Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival in Harrogate has always been a very special festival for me because I was in at the beginning.  I’m delighted to accept this award and to help the team celebrate 20 years of brilliant crime writing.”

Read on to find out more about the book, and the author, and get your copy of The Long Call…

‘Clever, compassionate and atmospheric’ – Elly Griffiths

About the book:

In North Devon, where the rivers Taw and Torridge converge and run into the sea, Detective Matthew Venn stands outside the church as his father’s funeral takes place. The day Matthew turned his back on the strict evangelical community in which he grew up, he lost his family too.

Now he’s back, not just to mourn his father at a distance, but to take charge of his first major case in the Two Rivers region; a complex place not quite as idyllic as tourists suppose.

A body has been found on the beach near to Matthew’s new home: a man with the tattoo of an albatross on his neck, stabbed to death.

Finding the killer is Venn’s only focus, and his team’s investigation will take him straight back into the community he left behind, and the deadly secrets that lurk there.

About the author:

Ann Cleeves is the author of more than thirty-five critically acclaimed novels, is the creator of popular detectives Vera Stanhope, Jimmy Perez and Matthew Venn, who can be found on television in ITV’s Vera, BBC One’s Shetland and ITV’s The Long Call respectively. The TV series and the books they are based on have become international sensations, capturing the imaginations of millions worldwide.

She served as the first Reader-in-Residence at the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival in 2003 and has played a significant role in the crime writing community since then. Her book The Long Call was chosen for 2023’s Big Read, the North’s biggest book club, which takes the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival on tour to libraries across the north of England to promote literacy and reading for pleasure in local communities. In 2021 she launched the Reading for Wellbeing Project with local authorities in the North East, advocating for reading as a way to improve mental health and well-being and support access to books.