Born in the East End of London, Barbara Nadel trained as an actress before becoming a writer. Now writing full-time, she has previously worked as a public relations officer for the National Schizophrenia Fellowship's Good Companion Service and as a mental health advocate for the mentally disordered in a psychiatric hospital. She has also worked with sexually abused teenagers and taught psychology in schools and colleges, and is currently the patron of a charity that cares for those in emotional and mental distress.
She has been a regular visitor to Turkey for more than twenty-five years.
Barbara Nadel currently lives in "the wilds of the north of England" with her husband and six axolotls, her "very demanding Persian cat" having died on 23 December 2011. Her son is a published academic.
Barbara Nadel has written thirteen books in her series about Çetin İkmen, a chain-smoking and hard-drinking detective on the Istanbul police force, and his colleagues Mehmet Süleyman, Balthazar Cohen and Armenian pathologist Arto Sarkissian. These have been translated into a number of languages, including Turkish, as well as being released as Audio books in English and German.
In January 2011 Quercus announced the signing of Ms Nadel to write a new crime series set in the modern-day East End, to be published starting Summer 2012 under the name B J Nadel, although the published book used Barbara Nadel.
Other published works include short stories in Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine plus British magazines My Weekly and Woman's Own, and travel pieces for British newspapers The Guardian, The Sunday Times, The Independent and US food magazine Saveur.
2006 winner of "Jury" magazine's Flintyxan ("Flint Axe") award for Best Historical Crime Novel (for Dödlig rättvisa, Marianne Alstermark's Swedish translation of Last Rights)
2008 winner of the London Borough of Redbridge Big Red Read Book of the Year for Ashes to Ashes
2010 winner of the London Borough of Redbridge Big Red Read Crime Fiction of the Year for Sure and Certain Death
2013 Derringer Finalist for short story Nain Rouge published in Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine
Published by Headline
- Belshazzar's Daughter (1999)
- A Chemical Prison (aka The Ottoman Cage) (2000)
- Arabesk (2001)
- Deep Waters (2002)
- Harem (2003)
- Petrified (2004)
- Deadly Web (2005)
- Dance With Death (2006)
- A Passion for Killing (2007)
- Pretty Dead Things (2007)
- River of the Dead (2009)
- Death by Design (2010)
- A Noble Killing (2011)
- Dead of Night (2012)
- Deadline (2013)
Published by Headline
- Last Rights (2005)
- After the Mourning (2006)
- Ashes to Ashes (2008)
- Sure and Certain Death (2009)
Hakim & Arnold
Published by Quercus
- A Private Business (2012)
- An Act of Kindness (2013)
- Tweet at 2:40 AM on 19 April 2012 Accessed 15 July 2012
- Barbara Nadel writing in her International Crime Authors Reality Check blog. Accessed 15 July 2012
- Barbara Nadel writing in her International Crime Authors Reality Check blog. Accessed 12 April 2011
- Quercus blog entry, 24 Jan 2011. Accessed 21 June 2011
- Amazon UK page. Accessed 15 July 2012
- Headline web site. Accessed 16 July 2012
- Goldsmith, Hilary Anne, The Relationship between the Aristotelian, Newtonian and holistic scientific paradigms and selected British detective fiction 1980-2010.
- International Crime Authors Reality Check
- Shotsmag Profile
- Fantastic Fiction profile
- Tangled Web profile
- Meet the Author (video) 2004
- CWA Gold and Silver Daggers 2005
- London Borough of Redbridge Big Red Read
- Wikipedia SE entry for the Flintyxan, in Swedish
- bokrecension.se entry for Marianne Alstermark, in Swedish
- 2013 Derringer nomination