87 books like The Long Firm

By Jake Arnott,

Here are 87 books that The Long Firm fans have personally recommended if you like The Long Firm. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of A Study in Scarlet

David Cairns Author Of The Case of the Wandering Corpse

From my list on 19th century murder, mystery and mayhem.

Why am I passionate about this?

History has always been a captivating adventure for me, a stage to rekindle the echoes of times long past. My journey began amid musty archives in Hobart, where I stumbled upon a handwritten prison record about my wife's feisty ancestor, transported in the 1830s. There and then, I resolved to breathe life into the fading embers of her existence, and after extensive research, I wrote my first novel, a tapestry of historical events intertwined with the resurrection of long-forgotten souls. Since then, I've applied lessons from masters like Conan Doyle to create exciting, atmospheric stories that turn us all into time travelers on an exhilarating voyage.

David's book list on 19th century murder, mystery and mayhem

David Cairns Why did David love this book?

This is the story that introduced Sherlock Holmes to the world.

The plot brings the reader to the dark streets of Victorian London as a cunning murderer is hunted down. Holmes’s unique powers of observation and deduction then set the bar for all subsequent detective stories as his friend, Watson, is etched into your mind as a ‘true blue’ friend whom you would like to call your own. The story is intricate, delving into the human psyche and the nature of justice. It draws you into the period; it has great characters and mystery, intrigue, and unexpected deductive skills.

I make no apologies for incorporating some of this Sherlockian style into my own mysteries, and perhaps there cannot be a greater tribute than that for this timeless classic. 

By Arthur Conan Doyle,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked A Study in Scarlet as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 9, 10, 11, and 12.

What is this book about?

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's A Study in Scarlet is the literary debut of the world's most famous fictional detective, Sherlock Holmes, introduced by Iain Sinclair with notes by Ed Glinert in Penguin Classics.

Convalescing in London after a disastrous experience of war in Afghanistan, Dr John Watson finds himself sharing rooms with his enigmatic new acquaintance, Sherlock Holmes. But their quiet bachelor life at 221B Baker Street is soon interrupted by the grisly discovery of a dead man in a grimy 'ill-omened' house in south-east London, his face contorted by an expression of horror and hatred such as Watson has…


Book cover of The Profession of Violence: The Rise and Fall of the Kray Twins

Mike Gerrard Author Of Strip till Dead

From my list on crime set in London.

Why am I passionate about this?

I began my freelance career as a travel writer, though I now also write about drinks. While living in London I worked for a while at the men’s magazine, Mayfair, and around that time went out for several months with a woman who was a stripper. I didn’t know that when we met, so judged her by her personality not her profession. One of the magazine’s models was murdered, and one of the staff questioned by police. He was totally innocent. I wanted to write the kind of book I like reading, bringing together those two storylines to create a fictional version of a very real part of London life.

Mike's book list on crime set in London

Mike Gerrard Why did Mike love this book?

I knew the author when I worked for his literary agent in London, and this is a fascinating and frightening look at the London crime world of the Kray Twins. They ruthlessly ruled parts of London, including the East End, and was an essential background re-read when I wrote my own London crime novel. I was trying to show behind the scenes of the world of striptease, but this book is a reminder of what’s behind even that behind-the-scenes world. I used to send a 6-monthly royalty cheque to their mother as their share for co-operating with the book, which is why it’s so authentic.

By John Pearson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Profession of Violence as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The classic, bestselling account of the infamous Kray twins, now a major film, starring Tom Hardy.

Reggie and Ronnie Kray ruled London's gangland during the 60s with a ruthlessness and viciousness that shocks even now. Building an empire of organised crime that has never been matched, the brothers swindled, extorted and terrorised - while enjoying a glittering celebrity status at the heart of the swinging 60s scene, until their downfall and imprisonment for life.


Book cover of The Cuckoo's Calling

Maurice Holloway Author Of Steal a Diamond

From my list on detective books with the most memorable protagonist.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have a passion for writing, and whenever I can, I try to help new writers improve their expertise so that one day they’ll complete their first book. My first book, born from a few-hundred-word short story at my writing group, turned into a three-book thriller series called FAVOURS. Since then, I’ve branched out by publishing a rom/com, a humorous ghost story as well as a standalone thriller. Agatha Christie published her first book as the result of a dare, which proves you can do it if you really want to.

Maurice's book list on detective books with the most memorable protagonist

Maurice Holloway Why did Maurice love this book?

As a multi-genre author, I was interested to see how the creator of a world-famous boy wizard was going to change her name and turn her hand to crime writing. I relished the result: the first outing for a new private investigator, a character called Cormoran Strike.

Known simply as Strike, he is a P.I. with a handicap (aren’t they all?). Not just the common ones; excessive drinking, difficult relationships, and so on, Strike lost half his right leg whilst serving in Afghanistan. Retiring from service, the ex-MP becomes a private investigator. He has few clients, no money, and is scruffy and unkempt because he sleeps in his office. But he does have a motto, "Do the job and do it well."

In social relationships, Strike isn’t a likable character; demanding and sometimes just plain rude. He has lost his last assistant. I warmed to him the more his traits…

By Robert Galbraith,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Cuckoo's Calling as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'The Cuckoo's Calling reminds me why I fell in love with crime fiction in the first place' VAL MCDERMID

-----

Now a major BBC drama: The Strike series

When a troubled model falls to her death from a snow-covered Mayfair balcony, it is assumed that she has committed suicide. However, her brother has his doubts, and calls in private investigator Cormoran Strike to look into the case.

Strike is a war veteran - wounded both physically and psychologically - and his life is in disarray. The case gives him a financial lifeline, but it comes at a personal cost: the…


Book cover of Bad Penny Blues

Mike Gerrard Author Of Strip till Dead

From my list on crime set in London.

Why am I passionate about this?

I began my freelance career as a travel writer, though I now also write about drinks. While living in London I worked for a while at the men’s magazine, Mayfair, and around that time went out for several months with a woman who was a stripper. I didn’t know that when we met, so judged her by her personality not her profession. One of the magazine’s models was murdered, and one of the staff questioned by police. He was totally innocent. I wanted to write the kind of book I like reading, bringing together those two storylines to create a fictional version of a very real part of London life.

Mike's book list on crime set in London

Mike Gerrard Why did Mike love this book?

I absolutely loved this book, set in the London of the 1960s. It starts with the murder of a prostitute and takes you into the shady world of Soho with its drugs and clubs, its swingers and its singers. A young PC is assigned to work with the CID to catch the killer, as he found the body. The writing is vivid and it appeals as the murder, though central, is only part of a broader picture of the London of that era.

By Cathi Unsworth,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Bad Penny Blues as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A gripping crime novel inspired by the "Jack the Stripper" killings in 1960s London.

Bad Penny Blues is the latest gripping crime fiction from Cathi Unsworth, London's undisputed queen of noir. Set in late 1950s and early 1960s London, it is loosely based on the West London "Jack the Stripper" killings that rocked the city. The narrative follows police officer Pete Bradley, who investigates the serial killings of a series of prostitutes, and, in a parallel story, Stella, part of the art and fashion worlds of 1960s "Swinging London," who is haunted by visions of the murdered women.


Book cover of Charles Booth's London Poverty Maps: A Landmark Reassessment of Booth's Social Survey

Fiona Rule Author Of The Worst Street in London

From my list on Victorian London.

Why am I passionate about this?

Fiona Rule is a writer, researcher, and historian specialising in the history of London. ​ She is the author of five books: The Worst Street In London, London's Docklands, London's Labyrinth, Streets Of Sin, and The Oldest House In London. ​ A regular contributor to television and radio programmes, Fiona also has her own company, House Histories, which specialises in researching the history of people's homes. She holds an Advanced Diploma in Local History from the University of Oxford.

Fiona's book list on Victorian London

Fiona Rule Why did Fiona love this book?

Not a book as such, but these maps tell the social historian a great deal about London in the late-1800s. They were compiled by Charles Booth, a wealthy philanthropist, who wanted to highlight the areas of London in the greatest need of help. In order to achieve this, he despatched a team of researchers to every street in London (except the City,) to assess their character. The results were entered onto a colour-coded map – yellow streets were the most affluent; black were the resorts of “vicious semi-criminals”.

By Mary S. Morgan,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Charles Booth's London Poverty Maps as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A splendid - and necessary - publication...a great resource
Iain Sinclair

Charles Booth's landmark survey of life in late-19th-century London, published for the first time in one volume.

In the late nineteenth century, Charles Booth's landmark social and economic survey found that 35 percent of Londoners were living in abject poverty. Booth's team of social investigators interviewed Londoners from all walks of life, recording their comments, together with their own unrestrained remarks and statistical information, in 450 notebooks. Their findings formed the basis of Booth's colour-coded social mapping (from vicious and semi-criminal to wealthy) and his seventeen-volume survey Inquiry into…


Book cover of The Outrun: A Memoir

Miranda Keeling Author Of The Year I Stopped To Notice

From my list on the magic in the ordinary.

Why am I passionate about this?

Before I started to focus on writing, I was a performer: an actor, a magician, and an escapologist. I’ve learnt a great deal about how to construct a story for an audience. I’m excited by the layers of a good narrative—by what makes it work. In my own life I’m always looking for the details: reflections in a puddle, the interactions of strangers, lost items left behind. My book is all about stopping in the middle of this overwhelming world to notice the everyday moments and to celebrate them. I often find that there is magic there, hidden in plain sight.

Miranda's book list on the magic in the ordinary

Miranda Keeling Why did Miranda love this book?

I was born in a fishing village in Yorkshire and although I live in the city now, I always feel the pull of the sea. This book is a memoir set in Orkney and London. It is about the writer’s struggle with addiction and her recovery – partly through reconnecting to the natural landscape again. Amy’s prose is clean and bright. She constructs sentences with no fat on them. Her descriptions are sharply accurate. I really related to her need to get away from London to find her way back to health. London life is intense and although I love it here, it is a constantly demanding city. Reading this novel reinforced my desire to look at things closely, notice them anew, and to remember to go and visit the sea, whenever I can. 

By Amy Liptrot,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Outrun as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

After a decade of heavy partying and hard drinking in London, Amy Liptrot returns home to Orkney, a remote island off the north of Scotland. The Outrun maps Amy's inspiring recovery as she walks along windy coasts, swims in icy Atlantic waters, tracks Orkney's wildlife, and reconnects with her parents, revisiting and rediscovering the place that shaped her.

A Guardian Best Nonfiction Book of 2016
Sunday Times Top Ten Bestseller
New Statesman Book of the Year


Book cover of Street Haunting: A London Adventure

Simon Leyland Author Of A Curious Guide to London: Tales of a City

From my list on London for the curious.

Why am I passionate about this?

In a previous life, I was a City trader and as such have always been fascinated by the ridiculous and the absurd. Now a full-time writer and poet, I live on the west coast of Ireland and have written a number of books including A Curious Guide to London, A Splendidly Smutty Dictionary of Sex, and The Men Who Stare At Hens. I also have a blog on all matters arcane.

Simon's book list on London for the curious

Simon Leyland Why did Simon love this book?

Written in 1927 it is one of the most entertaining accounts you will ever read of a typical day in London. Using the excuse of needing to buy a pencil, Woolf meanders through London taking in all the day-to-day activities of the populace. Admiring and also sometimes disapprovingly, she comments on the ordinary lives of every kind of Londoner from the sales girls at the haberdashery to the costermongers in the street.

By Virginia Woolf,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Street Haunting as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Little Clothbound Classics: irresistible, mini editions of short stories, novellas and essays from the world's greatest writers, designed by the award-winning Coralie Bickford-Smith.

'The hour should be evening and the season winter, for in winter the champagne brightness of the air and the sociability of the streets are grateful'. In such conditions, Virginia Woolf takes to London's streets in search of a pencil. The account of her journey - the people, the places, the pleasure - soon becomes one of the great paeans to city life. This collection also includes other wonderful essays, such as 'How Should One Read a…


Book cover of Vine Street

John Barlow Author Of Right to Kill: A gripping Yorkshire murder mystery for 2022 (DS Joe Romano crime thriller series book 1)

From my list on regional crime fiction in Britain.

Why am I passionate about this?

I write crime fiction set in the north of England. It’s where I was born and grew up, although for the last 20 years I’ve lived in Spain. I really love novels with a local or regional flavour. The kind of writing that takes you to a specific place, and draws on that place in the action itself. The writers that I chose for this list all do this extremely well. And although their books are set in different locations, they share the sense of the setting almost becoming a character in the story.

John's book list on regional crime fiction in Britain

John Barlow Why did John love this book?

Dominic wrote two very good crime books in a short series before publishing Vine Street.

I am including Vine Street on my list because, although it’s set in London and is therefore not ‘regional’, it was one of the great crime novels of 2021-22 and deserves to become a classic. I read this book before it was published, and I knew, like everyone else, that it was something special.

The story spans almost a century, from the seedy streets of London’s Soho in the 1930s, until the present day. There are some really well-researched and vividly depicted descriptions of police investigations in the 30s, and just for that it’s worth a read. But there’s also a twisting, mesmerizing plot that takes us all the way to the present.

What really distinguishes Vine Street, though, is the writing itself, which seems to echo the rhythms of the 1930s jazz clubs, and…

By Dominic Nolan,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Vine Street as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

***BEST CRIME BOOKS OF 2021 - THE TIMES/SUNDAY TIMES***
***CRIME BOOK OF THE MONTH - THE TIMES***

'Brings the obsessional dread of James Ellroy to 1940s London.' IAN RANKIN

'Extraordinary...a career-defining performance.' THE SUNDAY TIMES

'This is crime writing of the highest quality' DAILY MAIL

SOHO, 1935.
SERGEANT LEON GEATS' PATCH.

A snarling, skull-cracking misanthrope, Geats marshals the grimy rabble according to his own elastic moral code.

The narrow alleys are brimming with jazz bars, bookies, blackshirts, ponces and tarts so when a body is found above the Windmill Club, detectives are content to dismiss the case as just another…


Book cover of King: A Billionaire Romance

Morgan Lennox Author Of Stack the Deck: A Billionaire Romance

From my list on steamy billionaires in London.

Why am I passionate about this?

There are so many billionaire romances out there based in America, but as a Brit, there’s nothing quite like reading a contemporary romance based in London. The capital city of Great Britain, there are a great number of reasons why books here are simply to die for. The history, the culture, the mixture of communities, and the potential for passion – in my opinion, there’s no better place to escape to in a book. Even better if there are delicious characters to lose yourself with…

Morgan's book list on steamy billionaires in London

Morgan Lennox Why did Morgan love this book?

If you adore a second chance romance, then this is the steamy billionaire romance with a trip to London for you.

I adored how Rebecca Castle weaves together hints for the second standalone in this series, and a few of the scenes made me pant! So sizzling. Make sure you grab it now.

By Rebecca Castle,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked King as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Two sassy girls. Two billionaire British brothers. One beautiful city of culture, history.
And love.

KINGSLEY
Tall, handsome, rich, and British.
I thought I had it all as the bachelor son of one of England’s ancient aristocratic families. The girls. The parties. The money. The power.
But that was until I spent a semester at an American high school.
That was until I met her.

SCARLETT
That bad boy Brit, Kingsley Heath-Harding, broke my heart, but that was a long time ago in high school.
He fled back to the UK, and I thought I would never see him again.…


Book cover of The Brief

Elizabeth Bailey Author Of The Gilded Shroud

From my list on mysteries to escape the now and voyage the past.

Why am I passionate about this?

Even as a child, I wanted to escape from current times and visit bygone or future eras. History and literature were favourites and I gleaned most of what I know of the past by reading. Then I found Georgette Heyer, prompting a lifetime love affair with all things Georgian and Regency. Agatha Christie got me into mystery. I loved both the puzzle of whodunit and being whirled away into Poirot, Marple, or Cadfael territory. A good mystery and a deep dive into history as well? Heaven! Best of all is the author who draws me so completely into their imaginary world that the real one fades away.

Elizabeth's book list on mysteries to escape the now and voyage the past

Elizabeth Bailey Why did Elizabeth love this book?

This one had me on the edge of my seat. More telling for me to be thrown back in time to the 1960s. I didn’t live this life, but the background was familiar. I remember the Kray brothers and I did once briefly have a job in the sleazy sort of club where the boss had his goons hold a guy so he could punch him in the gut. Scary. Simon Michael’s story is all too believable and it is a testament to his ability to pull me into that world that it threw up long-gone memories. The story is told in first person which works to keep you guessing along with the protagonist barrister sleuth. For me it was a thrill ride into the past.

By Simon Michael,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Brief as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The legal thriller series you need to read! Perfect for fans of John Grisham, Robert Bailey, Michael Connelly and Robert Dugoni.

Guilty until proven innocent…

London, 1960

Barrister Charles Holborne is not popular. A Jewish East Ender with a rough past, he is ostracised by his anti-Semitic and class-conscious colleagues who don’t want him in their prestigious Establishment profession.

And the bitterness Charles feels at work is spilling over into his personal life, putting his marriage under strain.

When a high-profile murder case lands on his desk, Charles is hopeful his fortunes will turn around. But after a shocking crime…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in London, sociology, and poker?

11,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about London, sociology, and poker.

London 818 books
Sociology 145 books
Poker 28 books