Stephen Leather Books

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Stephen Leather is a British Thriller author who is the brains behind BBC’s, Murder in Mind Series, The Knock and London’s burning. Currently, he is rated among the best sellers on Amazon Kindle and the second best-selling UK author. Leather was born in the year 1956 in Manchester, England. He grew up Chorlton-cum-Hardy and Sales and attended the Manchester Grammar School. He later on attended Bath University, where he was awarded a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry. After obtaining his degree, Leather became a biochemist for ICI. Apart from being a biochemist, Leather has also worked as a baker, quarry worker, a barman and petrol pump attendant. Leather, later on, became a journalist and worked for various newspapers such as the Daily Mirror, Daily Mail, South China Morning Post and the Glasgow Herald.

Order of Spider Shepherd Series

1Hard Landing 2004Description / Buy
2Soft Target 2005Description / Buy
3Cold Kill 2006Description / Buy
4Hot Blood 2007Description / Buy
5Dead Men 2008Description / Buy
6Live Fire 2009Description / Buy
7Rough Justice 2010Description / Buy
8Fair Game 2011Description / Buy
9False Friends 2012Description / Buy
10True Colours 2013Description / Buy
11White Lies 2014Description / Buy
12Black Ops 2015Description / Buy
13Dark Forces 2016Description / Buy
14Light Touch 2017Description / Buy
15Tall Order 2018Description / Buy
16Short Range 2019Description / Buy
17Slow Burn 2020Description / Buy
18Fast Track 2021Description / Buy

Order of Spider Shepherd Short Stories/Novellas

1Friendly Fire 2012Description / Buy
2Dead Drop 2013Description / Buy
3Hard Targets 2013Description / Buy
4Kill Zone 2013Description / Buy
5Natural Selection (Short Story) 2013Description / Buy
6Warning Order 2013Description / Buy
7Hostile Territory 2013Description / Buy
8Rough Diamonds 2013Description / Buy
9Narrow Escape 2014Description / Buy
10Personal Protection (Short Story) 2014Description / Buy
11More Short Fuses 2014Description / Buy
12The Rope (Short Story) 2015Description / Buy
13Planning Pack (Short Story) 2015Description / Buy
14Remote Control 2015Description / Buy
15The Sandpit (Short Story) 2016Description / Buy
16Moving Targets 2018Description / Buy

Chronological Order of Spider Shepherd Short Stories/Novellas

1Hard Targets2013Description / Buy
2Natural Selection (Short Story)2013Description / Buy
3Narrow Escape2014Description / Buy
4Warning Order2013Description / Buy
5Hostile Territory2013Description / Buy
6Personal Protection (Short Story)2014Description / Buy
7The Rope (Short Story)2015Description / Buy
8Planning Pack (Short Story)2015Description / Buy
9Friendly Fire2012Description / Buy
10The Sandpit (Short Story)2016Description / Buy
11Dead Drop2013Description / Buy
12Kill Zone2013Description / Buy
13Rough Diamonds2013Description / Buy
14More Short Fuses2014Description / Buy
15Remote Control2015Description / Buy
16Moving Targets2018Description / Buy

Order of Lex Harper Series

1Takedown 2017Description / Buy
2Plausible Deniability (Short Story) (Short Story) 2019Description / Buy
3Breakout 2020Description / Buy

Order of Jack Nightingale Series

1Nightfall 2010Description / Buy
2Midnight 2011Description / Buy
3Nightmare 2012Description / Buy
4Nightshade 2013Description / Buy
5Lastnight 2014Description / Buy
6San Francisco Night 2014Description / Buy
7New York Night 2015Description / Buy
8Tennessee Night 2018Description / Buy

Order of Jack Nightingale Short Stories/Novellas

1Cursed (Short Story) 2011Description / Buy
2Still Bleeding (Short Story) 2012Description / Buy
3Blood Bath 2014Description / Buy
4My Name Is Lydia (Short Story) 2014Description / Buy
5Tracks (Short Story) 2014Description / Buy
6I Know Who Did It (Short Story) 2015Description / Buy
7Children of the Dark (Short Story) 2016Description / Buy
8The Creeper (Short Story) 2017Description / Buy
9The Asylum (Short Story) 2017Description / Buy
10The Undead (Short Story) 2017Description / Buy
11The Doll 2017Description / Buy
12The Mansion (Short Story) 2017Description / Buy
13Wrong Turn (Short Story) 2017Description / Buy
14The Cards (Short Story) 2017Description / Buy
15Possession (Short Story) 2017Description / Buy
16The House on Gable Street (Short Story) 2018Description / Buy
17Knock Knock (Short Story) 2018Description / Buy
18Watery Grave (Short Story) 2018Description / Buy
19Claws (Short Story) 2018Description / Buy

Order of Inspector Zhang Series

1Inspector Zhang Gets His Wish 2011Description / Buy
2Inspector Zhang and the Dead Thai Gangster 2011Description / Buy
3Inspector Zhang and the Falling Woman 2011Description / Buy
4Inspector Zhang and the Disappearing Drugs 2011Description / Buy
5Inspector Zhang And The Perfect Alibi 2012Description / Buy
6Inspector Zhang Goes To Harrogate 2012Description / Buy
7Inspector Zhang and the Island of the Dead (Short Story) 2013Description / Buy

Order of Asian Heat Series

1Banging Bill's Wife 2012Description / Buy
2The Alphabet Game 2012Description / Buy
3The Pregnant Wife 2012Description / Buy
4The Threesome 2012Description / Buy

Order of Mike Cramer Series

1The Chinaman 1992Description / Buy
2The Long Shot 1995Description / Buy
3The Double Tap 1996Description / Buy

Order of Stephen Leather Standalone Novels

1Pay Off 1987Description / Buy
2The Fireman 1989Description / Buy
3Hungry Ghost 1991Description / Buy
4The Vets 1993Description / Buy
5The Birthday Girl 1996Description / Buy
6The Solitary Man 1997Description / Buy
7The Tunnel Rats 1998Description / Buy
8The Bombmaker 1999Description / Buy
9The Stretch 2000Description / Buy
10Tango One 2002Description / Buy
11The Eyewitness 2004Description / Buy
12Private Dancer 2005Description / Buy
13Dreamer's Cat 2010Description / Buy
14Once Bitten 2010Description / Buy
15The Basement 2010Description / Buy
16Bangkok Bob and the Missing Mormon 2011Description / Buy
17The Bestseller (Short Story) 2011Description / Buy
18Take Two 2013Description / Buy
19First Response 2016Description / Buy
20Penalties 2016Description / Buy
21The Shout 2018Description / Buy
22Last Man Standing 2019Description / Buy
23The Bag Carrier 2019Description / Buy
24The Runner 2020Description / Buy
25Desperate Measures 2021Description / Buy
26The Hunting 2021Description / Buy

Order of Stephen Leather Short Stories/Novellas

1Rogue Warrior (Richard Yokely) 2019Description / Buy

Order of Stephen Leather Short Story Collections

1Short Fuses 2012Description / Buy
2The Eight Curious Cases of Inspector Zhang 2014Description / Buy
3Nightingale - A Short Story Collection 2017Description / Buy
4Nightingale 2 - A Short Story Collection 2018Description / Buy

Order of Stephen Leather Non-Fiction Books

1Confessions of a Bangkok Private Eye 2006Description / Buy

Stephen Leather Anthologies

1 Death Toll2013Description / Buy
2 Death Toll 22013Description / Buy
Print: Print PDF

The author Stephen Leather was born in Manchester, England, in October 1956. He studied biochemistry at Bath University, where he graduated in 1978. Upon completion of his degree, Leather put it to good use, working for Imperical Chemical Industries (ICI) as a biochemist. However, a complete change of course took place when he went to work as a journalist, working in the United Kingdom, as well as in Hong Kong for the South China Morning Post. It was during this time that Stephen Leather’s love for writing really took off. While he had tried his hand at writing for several years prior, after a decade as a journalist, Leather finally turned to writing full-time, and released his first book, Pay Off, in 1988.

Pay Off, published by Harper Collins, tells the story of a young man in Glasgow who looks to exact revenge on the men who killed his father. Leather spent several years working for the Glasgow Herald, so drew on his knowledge of the city to set Pay Off there. Leather drew on his knowledge of Hong Kong to write his second book, The Fireman, which has a tabloid journalist as the main protagonist.

As well as writing several stand-alone novels, Stephen Leather has also written several series, with his most popular perhaps being Dan Shepherd, also known as Spider, who is an undercover policeman, with a history of being an operative in the SAS. As well as Shepherd, Leather’s other main creation has been Jack Nightingale, who is a private detective.

However, Leather gained notoriety and a level of fame when Amazon opened the Kindle store. Sensing an opportunity, Leather set the cost of all his e-books to the lowest amount possible, and the general public, loving a bargain, catapulted several of his books into the top ten. Leather also self-promoted a lot of his work on forums throughout the internet, again ensuring his work stayed in the top ten lists for as long as possible. To date, he is one of the best selling e-book authors of all-time, and it’s all down to him capitalising on Amazon’s new venture.

Leather’s love for writing began when he was still in college. However, during those years, Leather only managed to pen down a few pages. Leather became a professional writer after he worked as a journalist and gained all the necessary experience. Leather’s very first novel was written while he was still working for the Daily Mirror. Harper Collins published the novel, Pay-Off from the slush pile. Pay-Off. Pay-Off is a novel about a merchant banker who decided to seek revenge against two gangsters who had murdered his father. The novel is set in the country of Scotland, a region where the author worked for more than five years for the Glasgow Herald. The author while working for the South China Morning Post penned his second novel, The Fireman down. With that said, Leather’s novels include themes of imprisonment, crime, terrorism, and military service.

The book’s settings are typical, the Far East and London. Stephen Leather writes his series in different genres. Dan Spider Shepherd is one of the main characters in one of his series. Dan is a former Special Air Service who later on became an undercover police officer. Jack Nightingale is another series by the author. Unlike the first series, the Jack Nightingale is a supernatural detective series which was published by Hodder and Stoughton and the books in the series include Midnight, Nightfall, Last Night and Night Shade. Apart from penning down novels, Leather has also written several screenplays such as The Knock, London’s Burning, and Murder in Mind series.

In the year 2010, Stephen Leather became one of the most successful writers’s in Amazon’s Kindle market. In the same year, Amazon opened an eBook market. As expected, Leather was convinced that people who will purchase eBooks would look for bargains. Thus, Leather priced his novels at the lowest price for independent authors. By doing this, Leather was able to get his book to the top ten best sellers list. In the year 2011, The Basement, Hard Landing, and the Basement occupied the top slots on the UK Kindle best-sellers list. On the same year, Leather became the second UK-based bestselling author after Lee Child who topped the list.

Stephen Leather Awards

Stephen Leather is yet to receive any major literary award.

Stephen Leather Books into Movies

The critically acclaimed Sky Television adapted the Bombmaker and The Stretch. Bombmaker was released in the year 2001 and was directed by Graham Theakston and starred Dervla Kirwan, Ciara Lyons, and Mark Womack. Bombmaker is unknown individuals kidnap a movie about a former Bombmaker who is forced to return to her craft after her daughter.

Best Stephen Leather Books

Hard Landing: The first installment in the Dan Shepherd book series, which features the protagonist Dan Shepherd. In this installment, Dan is used to putting his life at risk. He used to work for the SAS until his spouse convinced him to get out. Now, Dan works as an undercover detective for a leading police squad. The book begins as an exceedingly powerful drug lord begins to kill witnesses who had watched him commit various crimes. Thus, he is forced to go to an undercover prison, a place where any wrong move will mean assured death. As he continues his investigation, Dan eventually discovers that the man the police are looking for is exceedingly dangerous, and the police may have underrated him.

The man is exceedingly powerful that he can execute criminal offenses out of the prison. The Drug baron is known as Gerry Carpenter. Once he was arrested, the Drug squad began celebrating their victory since they had just arrested one of the most wanted men in the country. However, the celebrations are ended prematurely since Carpenter begins to conduct a series of attacks so that he can be able to regain his freedom. Police officers begin disappearing, while witnesses are threatened and the evidences are destroyed. With that said, this is an excellent read that will definitely leave you intrigued.

Stephen Leather FAQs

Q: What television programmes has Stephen Leather written for?

A: Amongst other programmes, Stephen has written for London’s Burning and Murder In Mind.

Q: When was Stephen Leather born?

A: The author Stephen Leather was born on October 25th, 1956.

When Does The Next Stephen Leather book come out?

The next book by Stephen Leather is Fast Track and will be released on September, 28th 2021. It is the newest book in the Spider Shepherd Series.

1 thought on “Stephen Leather”

  1. Hello, Enjoyed Black Ops immensely.
    But three times in the novel the word “span” was used instead of “spun”. Span, as I understand it is a unit of measurement, while spun is the past tense of the verb to spin. Just thought I’d mention it!

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