More about The Long Call
More about The Heron's Cry
Two Rivers #2.5, a Matthew Venn novella
More about The Raging Storm
Watch out for a Summer Storm
When Jem Rosco - sailor, adventurer and local legend - blows into town in the middle of an autumn gale, the residents of Greystone, Devon, are delighted to have a celebrity in their midst. The residents think nothing of it when Rosco disappears again; that's the sort of man he is.
Until the lifeboat is launched to a hoax call-out during a raging storm and his body is found in a dinghy, anchored off Scully Cove, a place with legends of its own.
This is an uncomfortable case for DI Matthew Venn. He came to the remote village as a child, its community populated by the Barum Brethren that he parted ways with, so when superstition and rumour mix and another body is found in the cove, Matthew soon finds his judgement clouded.
As the stormy winds howl and the village is cut off, Venn and his team start their investigation, little realising their own lives might be in danger…
More about The Raging Storm.
The Heron's Cry
The Heron's Cry is a second case for detective Matthew Venn and his colleague Jen Rafferty. In North Devon, where two rivers converge and run into the sea, a rare hot summer brings tourists flocking to the coastline. Matthew is called out to a rural crime scene at the home of a group of artists. What he finds is an elaborately staged murder - Dr Nigel Yeo has been fatally stabbed with a shard of one of his glassblower daughter's broken vases.
Dr Yeo seems an unlikely murder victim. He's a good man, a public servant, beloved by his daughter. Matthew is unnerved, though, to find that she is a close friend of Jonathan, his husband.
"This character-driven exploration of people's darkest flaws is a sterling example of Cleeves' formidable talents."
The Heron's Cry was longlisted for the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year 2022. It was shortlisted for a Ned Kelly Award by the Australian Crime Writers Association, in the International category.
Read more about The Heron's Cry, the second in Ann Cleeves's Two Rivers series.
New readers start here ...
Detective Matthew Venn stands outside the church as his father's funeral takes place. Once loved and cherished, the day Matthew left the strict evangelical community he grew up in, he lost his family too.
Now, as he turns and walks away again, he receives a call from one of his team. A body has been found on the beach nearby: a man with a tattoo of an albatross on his neck, stabbed to death. The case calls Matthew back into the community he thought he had left behind, as deadly secrets hidden at its heart are revealed, and his past and present collide.
The Long Call won the Agatha Award for Best Contemporary Novel published in 2019. It was chosen by the Library Journal as one of their crime books of the year, and was longlisted for the Theakstons Crime Novel of the Year award.
More about The Long Call.
Ann introduces the characters - and the landscape - of the Two Rivers series:
As seen on TV
A four-part adaptation of The Long Call was broadcast in the UK in the autumn of 2021: it remains available on itvX. In the US, the series was streamed on Britbox. Matthew Venn was (played by Ben Aldridge (Our Girl, Fleabag) and his colleague Jen Rafferty (Pearl Mackie, best known for her work in Doctor Who, where she played the role of the Doctor's companion, Bill Potts, opposite Peter Capaldi). The supporting cast includes award-winning actress Juliet Stevenson (Truly Madly, Deeply) as Matthew's mother Dorothy.
Ann says: "I can't think of anyone who could play Matthew Venn better than Ben Aldridge. He will bring an authenticity and commitment to the rôle. I always hoped that the actor chosen would come from Devon, where the books are set, and he does."