CRIME writer Cara Hunter is continuing to stake her claim as Colin Dexter’s successor with the latest in her series of bestselling novels.

Ms Hunter, who lives in Oxford with her husband Simon, achieved instant success with her first novel Close to Home in 2017, which featured DI Adam Fawley’s investigation into the disappearance of an eight-year-old girl.

Close to Home was a Richard and Judy Book Club pick and she followed up this success with In the Dark and No Way Out.

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Now her fourth novel, All The Rage, is in the shops and it will also be published in countries around the world including Taiwan, China and Russia.

It tells the disturbing story of girls in Oxford being abducted but the author insists the plot is not based on any real-life incidents.

Ms Hunter wants her plots to be as up-to-date as possible so transgender issues also get a mention.

Oxford Mail:

The author said her worldwide sales were partly due to the ‘power of Oxford’.

She added: “People feel at home here in their imaginations even if they have never been here because they have seen Colin Dexter’s Inspector Morse on TV.

“He covered the university side of the city so well that it’s hard to find even a small chink left to play out in an Oxford college.

“I’m more interested in the interlocking circles around the centre of the city, socially, geographically and emotionally.

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“It’s a nice way of introducing people to bits of the city they never knew existed.”

Ms Hunter said fans of her books were now becoming attached to some of the detectives in her novels including DI Adam Fawley and DC Erica Somer.

She added: “That’s the lovely thing about writing a series - you can explore the characters’ rich hinterland and the readers get invested in them emotionally - this time Erica Somer has a new man in her life.”

Ms Hunter is thrilled that her novels have been so well received but has not forgotten her predecessors.

Erica Somer’s surname is a deliberate anagram of Morse.

She is now working on book five in the series, The Whole Truth.

Ms Hunter said: “It has been a real rollercoaster because Close to Home came out in December 2017. That’s four books in two years and I’m now writing the fifth.”

Oxford Mail:

The novels have now sold three quarters of a million copies worldwide and publishers Penguin estimate that someone in the world buys a Cara Hunter book every 50 seconds.

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While Ms Hunter may take notice of local crimes she insists her plots are not based on them. In the novel’s acknowledgements she writes: “The news items are also entirely fictional; none of the people represented is based on a real person and any similarity between online user names in the book and those of real people is entirely coincidental.”

She added: “For the eagle-eyed among you, April 1, 2018 was actually a Sunday but I had to shift it to a Monday for the purposes of the plot.”

As the author continues to write her gripping fiction a team of experts helps to ensure the facts are authentic.

All the Rage is published by Penguin, price £7.99.