Cross Purpose: a new voice for older women in crime fiction

Posted on February 17, 2017

Cross Purpose, the exciting debut crime thriller by Claire MacLeary out on 23 February 2017, is unquestionably different to the norm. Instead of the usual crime fiction tropes – such as alcoholic cops who break all the rules – the lead characters are women… an older female duo with a real, warm relationship, who fight for what’s right.

Think Aberdeen’s answer to Happy Valley. Or an updated, thoroughly modern take on Cagney and Lacey, with added grit.

When Maggie Laird’s disgraced ex-cop husband suddenly dies, her humdrum life is turned upside down. With bills mounting, she takes on his struggling detective agency, enlisting the help of neighbour Big Wilma. And so an unlikely partnership is born.

But the discovery of a crudely mutilated body soon raises the stakes … and Maggie and Wilma are drawn into an unknown world of Aberdeen’s sink estates, clandestine childminding and dodgy dealers.

Cross Purpose is surprising, gritty, sometimes darkly humorous – a tale combining police corruption, gangs and murder with a paean to friendship, loyalty and how ‘women of a certain age’ can beat the odds.


Claire MacLeary is launching Cross Purpose at Granite Noir, Aberdeen’s crime fiction festival

The Lemon Tree Studio, Aberdeen; Sunday 26 February, 11.30am