Stephen Leather Books

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

# Read Title Published Details
1 Hard Landing 2004 Description / Buy
2 Soft Target 2005 Description / Buy
3 Cold Kill 2006 Description / Buy
4 Hot Blood 2007 Description / Buy
5 Dead Men 2008 Description / Buy
6 Live Fire 2009 Description / Buy
7 Rough Justice 2010 Description / Buy
8 Fair Game 2011 Description / Buy
9 False Friends 2012 Description / Buy
10 True Colours 2013 Description / Buy
11 White Lies 2014 Description / Buy
12 Black Ops 2015 Description / Buy
13 Dark Forces 2016 Description / Buy
14 Light Touch 2017 Description / Buy

Order of Spider Shepherd Short Stories Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 Friendly Fire 2012 Description / Buy
2 Kill Zone 2013 Description / Buy
3 Dead Drop 2013 Description / Buy
4 Spider Shepherd Short Stories 2013 Description / Buy
5 Natural Selection (Short Story) 2013 Description / Buy
6 Hostile Territory 2013 Description / Buy
7 Warning Order 2013 Description / Buy
8 Rough Diamonds 2013 Description / Buy
9 Narrow Escape 2014 Description / Buy
10 More Short Fuses 2014 Description / Buy
11 Remote Control 2014 Description / Buy
12 Spider Shepherd: SAS Volume 1 2014 Description / Buy
13 Spider Shepherd: SAS Volume 2 2014 Description / Buy
14 Hard Targets 2015 Description / Buy
15 The Rope (Short Story) 2015 Description / Buy
16 Planning Pack (Short Story) 2015 Description / Buy
17 The Sandpit (Short Story) 2016 Description / Buy

Order of Jack Nightingale Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 Nightfall 2010 Description / Buy
2 Midnight 2011 Description / Buy
3 Cursed (Short Story) 2011 Description / Buy
4 Nightmare 2012 Description / Buy
5 Still Bleeding (Short Story) 2012 Description / Buy
6 Nightshade 2013 Description / Buy
7 Lastnight 2014 Description / Buy
8 Blood Bath 2014 Description / Buy
9 Tracks (Short Story) 2014 Description / Buy
10 San Francisco Night 2014 Description / Buy
11 I Know Who Did It (Short Story) 2015 Description / Buy
12 New York Night 2015 Description / Buy
13 Children Of The Dark (Short Story) 2016 Description / Buy
14 The Creeper (Short Story) 2017 Description / Buy

Order of Mike Cramer Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 The Chinaman 1992 Description / Buy
2 The Long Shot 1995 Description / Buy
3 The Double Tap 1996 Description / Buy

Order of Inspector Zhang Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 Inspector Zhang Gets His Wish 2011 Description / Buy
2 Inspector Zhang and the Dead Thai Gangster 2011 Description / Buy
3 Inspector Zhang and the Falling Woman 2011 Description / Buy
4 Inspector Zhang and the Disappearing Drugs 2011 Description / Buy
5 Inspector Zhang And The Perfect Alibi 2012 Description / Buy
6 Inspector Zhang Goes To Harrogate 2012 Description / Buy
7 The Eight Curious Cases of Inspector Zhang 2014 Description / Buy

Order of Asian Heat Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 Banging Bill's Wife 2012 Description / Buy
2 The Alphabet Game 2012 Description / Buy
3 The Pregnant Wife 2012 Description / Buy
4 The Threesome 2012 Description / Buy

Order of Stephen Leather Short Story Collections

# Read Title Published Details
1 Short Fuses 2012 Description / Buy

Order of Stephen Leather Standalone Novels

# Read Title Published Details
1 Pay Off 1987 Description / Buy
2 The Fireman 1989 Description / Buy
3 Hungry Ghost 1991 Description / Buy
4 The Vets 1993 Description / Buy
5 The Birthday Girl 1996 Description / Buy
6 The Solitary Man 1997 Description / Buy
7 The Bombmaker 1999 Description / Buy
8 The Stretch 2000 Description / Buy
9 Tango One 2002 Description / Buy
10 The Eyewitness 2003 Description / Buy
11 The Tunnel Rats 2004 Description / Buy
12 Private Dancer 2005 Description / Buy
13 Dreamer's Cat 2010 Description / Buy
14 Once Bitten 2010 Description / Buy
15 The Basement 2010 Description / Buy
16 Bangkok Bob And The Missing Mormon 2011 Description / Buy
17 The Bestseller (Short Story) 2011 Description / Buy
18 Take Two 2013 Description / Buy
19 First Response 2016 Description / Buy
20 Penalties 2016 Description / Buy

Order of Stephen Leather Non-Fiction Books

# Read Title Published Details
1 Confessions of a Bangkok Private Eye 2006 Description / Buy

Anthologies/Collaborations

# Read Title Published Details
1 Death Toll 2013 Description / Buy
Print: Print PDF

The author Simon 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?

Stephen Leather doesn't seem to have an upcoming book. Their newest book is Light Touch and was released on October, 3rd 2017. It is the newest book in the Spider Shepherd Series.

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  • Frank Johnson

    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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