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The Holy Thief (Korolev Mysteries 1) - William Ryan

The Holy Thief (Korolev Mysteries 1) - William Ryan

This is book № 304 of an exclusive edition of 500 copies

Title: The Holy Thief

Author:  William Ryan

ISBN:  9780230742734

Weight:  835g

Numbered signed first edition, first printing




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The Holy Thief by William Ryan

Moscow, 1936 and Stalin’s Great Terror is beginning…

In a deconsecrated Church, a young woman is found dead, her mutilated body displayed on the altar for all to see.

Captain Alexei Dimitrevich Korolev of the Criminal Investigation Division of the Moscow Militia, is asked to investigate.  But when he discovers that the victim is an American citizen, the NKVD – the most feared organisation in Russia – becomes involved.

As more bodies are discovered and the pressure from above builds, Korolev begins to question who he can trust; and who, in this Russia where fear, uncertainty and hunger prevails, are the real criminals.  Soon, Korolev will find not only his moral and political ideals threatened, but also his life…

Peer & Press Reviews

The Holy Thief is an impressive debut from Ryan.  It pulls off the difficult task of laying down ample foundations for a scheduled subsequent series without burdening its narrative drive with excessive back-story detail.  I look forward to Captain Korolev’s further exploits under the cold gaze of Comrade Stalin.

Yorkshire Evening Post

It is rare to meet a genuinely exciting new voice in crime fiction…  Ryan writes with narrative drive and urgency, real sense of place, and a central character who is conflicted, moral, and above all likeable.  Any one of these things is a rarity; the combination is whodunit heaven.

Times Literary Supplement

Ryan’s novel has an authority that belies his first-novel status…  Ryan demonstrates considerable skill in evoking this benighted period, along with a deftness at ringing the changes on familiar crime plotting moves.  The auguries for a series, of which The Holy Thief is the first book, are very promising indeed.

Barry Forshaw, Daily Express

Bibliographic Info

Attribute Details
Title: The Holy Thief
Book Features
Edition / printing: First edition, first printing
Edition background:

This numbered edition comes from a small print run of just 500 copies commissioned by a leading London bookshop working in association with the publisher.

The book has an authentication page, immediately before the title page, that confirms the book’s number.  This page also gives the book’s title, the author’s name, the name of the publisher and the month and year of publication.

Book number: 304 of 500
Series: Korolev Mysteries series – book 1
Overall condition: Very fine / Very fine
Signed: On the title page
Book Stats
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Imprint: Mantle
Awards and prizes:

Theakston’s OP Crime Novel of the Year 2011 – shortlist

Kerry Group Irish Fiction Award 2011 – shortlist

Barry Awards 2011 – shortlist (best first novel category)

CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger 2010 – shortlist

Publication date:
Printed by: CPI Mackays, Chatham
ISBN 13: 9780230742734
ISBN 10: 0230742734
Format: Hardcover with dust jacket
Pages: 341
Size (h x w x d): 242 x 162 x 34mm
Design Credits
Author photo: Kate Eshelby
Jacket images: Shutterstock
Jacket image (back): akg-images / RIA Nowost [Icon Our Lady of Kazan]

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