April 20, 1960 |
|Occupation||Journalist and novelist|
Simon Beckett (born 20 April 1960 in Sheffield, England) is a British journalist and author. His books, in particular the crime series around forensic anthropologist Dr David Hunter, have sold 21 million of copies worldwide, and enjoyed particular success in Germany and Scandinavia.
Life and works
Simon Beckett was born on 20 April 1960 in Sheffield, UK, to a working-class background. After earning a Master of Arts degree in English, Beckett taught in Spain and played in several bands before becoming a freelance journalist. He has written for The Times, The Independent on Sunday, The Daily Telegraph and The Observer, amongst others. He wrote several novels, including Fine Lines in 1994, before publishing the first novel in the David Hunter series, The Chemistry of Death, in 2006. A crime novel centred on a forensic anthropologist, Dr David Hunter, as the protagonist, The Chemistry of Death was shortlisted for the 2006 Gold Dagger award. Sequel novels featuring David Hunter have been released in August 2007 (Written in Bone), January 2009 (Whispers of the Dead), 2010 (The Calling of the Grave) and 2017 (The Restless Dead). The series has sold several million copies worldwide and is particularly popular in Germany and Scandinavia.
The books and protagonist were inspired when Beckett visited the "Body Farm" (by its official name: the University of Tennessee Anthropological Research Facility, founded by forensic anthropology pioneer Dr Bill Bass) in 2002, doing research for an article for the Daily Telegraph. Having watched—and participated in—"live" exercises involving manufactured crime scenes containing real decaying corpses, and having witnessed the sciences employed to ascertain how, when and where death occurred, Beckett was inspired to create a central character who is, in his own words, "vulnerable" and "very human", while authoritative and knowledgeable regarding forensic anthropology.
Simon Beckett is married and currently lives in Sheffield, England.
David Hunter series
- The Chemistry of Death (2006)
- Written in Bone (2007)
- Whispers of the Dead (2009)
- The Calling of the Grave (2010)
- The Restless Dead (2017)
- Fine Lines (1994)
- Animals (1995)
- Where There's Smoke (1997)
- Owning Jacob (1998)
- Stone Bruises (2014)
- "Interview with author Simon Beckett". Reader's Digest New Zealand. Retrieved 17 September 2012.
- "Simon Beckett Official Homepage: About the Author". Retrieved 10 September 2012.
- Simon Beckett (9 February 2012). "The bestselling author no one in Britain knows". The Guardian. Retrieved 5 December 2012.
- "Simon Beckett Official Homepage: Intro". Retrieved 5 December 2012.