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On sale

27th April 2023

Price: £9.99

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Selected: Paperback / ISBN-13: 9781529345766

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‘Mesmerising and utterly absorbing’ New York Times

‘A magnificent storyteller’ Der Spiegel

A retired small-town doctor takes a garden axe to his cruel wife.

A woman laces her brother’s food with barbiturates.

Two men steal a priceless Japanese tea bowl with brutal consequences.

What drives a person to commit a crime?

Our narrator knows that behind every misdeed is a story waiting to be told. In this collection of chilling cases, a nameless lawyer recounts the love, obsession, selfishness and despair that influenced his clients’ irrevocable choices.

Drawn from Ferdinand von Schirach’s eminent career as a criminal defence lawyer, Crime blends fiction with real life, each story a revealing, unsettling insight into what may compel a person to act beyond the law.


The Spectator
Addictive . . . fascinating
Olen Steinhauer, New York Times
Mesmerizing . . . a slim, utterly absorbing collection of 11 stories plucked from [von Schirach's] legal career and told in a cool, patient voice that immediately draws the reader in
Praise for Ferdinand von Schirach
Ice-cool, effortlessly classy prose
Laura Wilson, Guardian
Tantalising and disturbing in equal measure
New York Times
An exceptional prose stylist
Der Spiegel
A magnificent storyteller
Christian House, Financial Times
Psychologically raw . . . delivered in a crisp translation by Katharina Hall, his unfussy prose is icily effective . . . it suggests that all justice systems are flawed, that they are all just processes. And, with immense empathy, von Schirach's stories show what happens to people when they are processed.
Declan Hughes, Irish Times
The stories are cool, meticulously crafted, pithy and mordantly amusing . . . this is an unsettling, affecting, extremely powerful book. Highly recommended
An impressive page-turner with substance and bite
To the Ends of the Word blog
Thrilling and edgy, often carrying a twist in the tale