Dead Lands

Dead Lands

Dead Lands Cover

When a woman’s body is found a specialist unit is called in to investigate and prime suspect Alexander Troy is arrested for the murder. Desperate to remain a free man, Troy protests his innocence, but refuses to use his alibi. Trying to protect the woman he loves becomes a dangerous game – questions are asked and suspicions deepen.

When the prime suspect completes a daring escape from custody, DI Breck and DS Kearns begin the hunt. Breck wants out of the force while Kearns has her own agenda and seeks revenge, and a right-wing march provides an explosive backdrop in the hunt for Troy.

Dead Lands – an assured and gripping debut that sucks you in.” –  Stav Sherez, winner of the 2018 Theakston Crime Novel of the Year Award.

Lloyd Otis, a big new talent to watch out for.” – Craig Russell. 2008 CWA Dagger in the Library winner, 2015 McIlvanney Prize winner, and 2017 McIlvanney Prize finalist.

An excellent debut thriller from Lloyd Otis.” – Mark Mayes, author of The Gift Maker.

A multifaceted novel, with themes of violence, past secrets, and lies.  5/5* Genius.” – Anne Bonny Book Reviews.

Lloyd Otis makes a solid debut as a novelist with Dead Lands.” – The Novel Gent.

One hell of a murder mystery. I highly recommend it.”  – Brew and Books Review.

A very good debut novel.”- Martha B, NetGalley reviewer.

If you’re a fan of Crime stories then you most definitely will not be disappointed.” – Jessica Loves To Read 

A terrific first crime novel that presses all the right buttons and delivers.” – The Last Word Book Review.

Brilliant, atmospheric 1970s-set thriller. Highly recommended!” – Hayley Webster, author of Jar Baby.

Would I recommend this book? Hell yes! 5/5*” – Minimac Reviews.

A brilliant, high action and tense debut full of secrets and misdirection. Well done Mr Otis. Highly recommended.” –      Jen Med’s Book Reviews.

Brimming with the atmosphere of 70s Britain.” – Books Are My Cwtches.

A really enjoyable read. Lloyd Otis is a talented writer.” – Hooked From Page One.

A clever, enjoyable, nostalgic, look back at my favourite decade.” – Angelena Boden, author of The Cruelty of Lambs.

A fabulous read that was bold, gripping and full of intrigue and definitely an author to watch out for in the future!” – Books and Me.

Lloyd Otis is a fresh new talent, exploding onto the crime scene.” –  My Chestnut Reading Tree.

I think it [Dead Lands] was great and Lloyd is a great writer!” –    Natasha, Chicago, IL.

About the author

Lloyd was born in London and attained a BA (Hons) in Media and Communication. After gaining several years of valuable experience within the finance and digital sectors, he completed a course in journalism and has interviewed a host of bestselling authors, such as Mark Billingham, Hugh Howey, Kerry Hudson and Lawrence Block. Two of his short stories were selected for publication in the ‘Out of My Window’ anthology.

Lloyd is a former member of the Forest Hill Writers’ Group  and a former student of the Curtis Brown Creative Writing Course.  He has blogged for The Bookseller, The Huffington Post. Dead Lands is his debut novel.


Latest News

Bloody Scotland 2021

Winners announced: Congratulations!

Hyde, by Craig Russell, wins the McIlvanney Prize for Best Crime Novel of the Year 2021

Edge of the Grave, by Robbie Morrison, wins the prize for Crime Novel of the Year 2021

Bloody Scotland 2021

Great news! This year’s Bloody Scotland crime writing festival will run from Friday 17th to Sunday 19th September 2021 in hybrid form, and the McIlvanney Prize 2021 Shortlist has been announced too. An exciting line-up of stellar crime fiction books will battle it out for the prestigious prize. A huge congratulations to all those shortlisted.

The April Dead by Alan Parks

The Silent Daughter by Emma Christie

Hyde by Craig Russell

Edge of the Grave by Robbie Morrison

The Coffin Maker’s Garden by Stuart MacBride

The winners of both the McIlvanney Prize and the Scottish Crime Debut of the Year will be revealed at the Albert Halls in Stirling at 5.15pm on Friday 17 September and broadcast live on-line. This year, the prize ceremony will be free but ticketed to watch or attend! Get your free ticket for in-person attendance or online viewing.
(Image and information courtesy of Bloody Scotland)


Another Triumph for Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival.

Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival 2021 proved to be a joyous affair. Those who made the trip enjoyed a crime fiction feast of great panels, topical debate, and plenty of laughs. The Theakston Old Peculier Outstanding Contribution to Crime Fiction Award 2020, and 2021 went to the two giants of the crime genre, Mark Billingham, and Ian Rankin respectively. Whilst Chris Whittaker won the prestigious Crime Novel of the Year Award with, ‘We Begin at the End’. In an unprecedented move, Brian McGilloway’s The Last Crossing was Highly Commended.

The Author Dinner was quite special too. The truly lovely group of crime fiction readers that joined me proved to be real true detectives as we put our heads together to solve the murder mystery during the course of the evening. I couldn’t have asked for a better group of guests.

Theakston’s staff, sponsors, and authors – old friends and new – all put on a great show, but none of it would have been possible without the readers that attended.

The Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival 22-25 July 2021 

I’m thrilled to be hosting an Author Dinner at the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival, alongside a bunch of great authors. The Festival is back after last year’s cancellation due to the pandemic, and will feature a host of top crime writing names such as Ian Rankin, Mark Billingham, Elly Griffiths, Anne Cleeves, Mick Herron, and Richard Osman. This year’s Festival promises to be one of the best yet, so don’t miss out.

For more information click here.


CWA 2021: Winners

The  2021 CWA Dagger winners were announced on Thursday 1st July via an  online ceremony. Huge congratulations to all the winners.

A recording of the event will be available on CWA’s YouTube channel
NB: Winner’s list courtesy of CWA


Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival 2021: Shortlist

Great news. The shortlist for Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year 2021 has been announced.

The six shortlisted books are:

Three Hours by Rosamund Lupton (Penguin Random House UK, Viking)

We Begin At The End by Chris Whitaker (Bonnier Books UK, Zaffre)

The Man on the Street by Trevor Wood (Quercus, Quercus Fiction)

The Last Crossing by Brian McGilloway (Little, Brown Book Group, Constable)

The Lantern Men by Elly Griffiths (Quercus, Quercus Fiction)

Death in the East by Abir Mukherjee (VINTAGE, Harvill Secker)

Official Notification: The public are now invited to vote for a shortlist of six titles on, which will be announced in June. The winner will be revealed on the opening night of Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival, Thursday 22 July, and will receive £3,000, and a handmade, engraved beer barrel provided by Theakston Old Peculier.

Euro Football: Blood and Guts

The recent England vs Scotland Euro group stage game has brought up a host of memories and talking points for many. The last time both teams met in the Euros Gazza’s goal and celebration ended up on the front pages. Since then, there has been a need for the Scots to even the score in a major competition.

Authors don’t just write, we do other things too. Bloody Scotland’s England v Scotland games are famous centrepieces because the authors give 100%, displaying skills akin to Ronaldo and Messi, with the heart and guile of Dave Mackay and Bobby Charlton.

Interesting fact: The Bloody Scotland history books will show that I’m the only author to represent both Scotland and England in consecutive years, and be on the winning side each time. How did it happen? Well, that’s a really long story, but it’s a record I’m proud of. All that’s left to say is good luck to both teams in tonight’s all important games:
Czech Republic vs England  and  Croatia vs Scotland.

CWA Dagger Shortlists 2021

The 2021 CWA Dagger Shortlists have now been published, showcasing  a great array of books from a wide range of talented authors.

Here’s a sneak peak at a few of the shortlists.


SA COSBY:Blacktop Wasteland (Headline, Headline Publishing Group)

BEN CREED: City of Ghosts (Welbeck Fiction, Welbeck Publishing Group)

NICCI FRENCH: House of Correction (Simon & Schuster)

ROBERT GALBRAITH: Troubled Blood (Sphere, Little, Brown Book Group)

ELLY GRIFFITHS: The Postscript Murders (Quercus)

THOMAS MULLEN: Midnight Atlanta (Little, Brown, Little, Brown Book Group)

CHRIS WHITAKER: We Begin at the End (Zaffre, Bonnier)


EVA BJÖRG ÆGISDÓTTIR: The Creak on the Stairs (Orenda), Translator: Victoria Cribb

BEN CREED: City of Ghosts (Welbeck Publishing)

EGAN HUGHES: The One That Got Away (Sphere, Little, Brown Book Group)

S W KANE: The Bone Jar (Thomas & Mercer, Amazon Publishing)

STEPHEN SPOTSWOOD: Fortune Favours the Dead (Wildfire, Headline)

JOHN VERCHER: Three-Fifths (Pushkin Press)


ASHLEY HARRISON: The Looking Glass Spy


BIBA PEARCE: Rough Justice




Good luck to all the authors involved, and the full set of shortlists can be found on the CWA’s website here.

Aye Write returns and makes up for lost time

Aye Write, Glasgow’s prominent annual book festival, returns with a stellar lineup after the postponement of  the 2020 event due to COVID-19. The sessions take place from the 14th – 23rd May 2021.

Topics include:

  • Vikki Reilly Introduces… Scottish Debuts
  • Can You Trust What You Saw?
  • Captivating Caribbean Fiction
  • Big Ideas To Carry In Your Pocket
  • Prize-winning Scottish Authors
  • The Future Of Your Data
  • The Life and Legacy of James Baldwin
  • A Pair of Explosive Thrillers
  • Fiction as the New Rock ‘n’ Roll
  • Late Bloomers

Tickets are available to purchase online from

Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival 2021:The Longlist

For many crime fiction enthusiasts the announcement of the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year longlist is a special time. This year is no different, with a number of amazing crime fiction books making the cut.

Here’s the 2021 longlist

  • Cry Baby by Mark Billingham (Little, Brown Book Group, Sphere)
  • The Other Passenger by Louise Candlish (Simon & Schuster)
  • The Cutting Place by Jane Casey (HarperCollins, HarperFiction)
  • Fifty Fifty by Steve Cavanagh (The Orion Publishing Group, Orion Fiction)
  • Black River by Will Dean (Oneworld Publications, Point Blank)
  • Between Two Evils by Eva Dolan (Bloomsbury Publishing, Raven Books)
  • The Guest List by Lucy Foley (HarperCollins, HarperFiction)
  • The Lantern Men by Elly Griffiths (Quercus, Quercus Fiction)
  • The Big Chill by Doug Johnstone (Orenda Books)
  • Three Hours by Rosamund Lupton (Penguin Random House UK, Viking)
  • Still Life by Val McDermid (Little, Brown Book Group, Sphere)
  • The Last Crossing by Brian McGilloway (Little, Brown Book Group, Constable)
  • Death in the East by Abir Mukherjee (VINTAGE, Harvill Secker)
  • Our Little Cruelties by Liz Nugent (Penguin, Sandycove)
  • A Song For The Dark Times by Ian Rankin (Orion, Orion Fiction)
  • Remain Silent by Susie Steiner (HarperCollins Publishers, The Borough Press)
  • We Begin At The End by Chris Whitaker (Bonnier Books UK, Zaffre)
  • The Man on the Street by Trevor Wood (Quercus, Quercus Fiction)

Room 101
: Great lineup, where the topic of ‘literary’ crime fiction was candidly discussed. With lockdown rules in place authors miss the fans too, but this is a great way to bring us all together.

Don’t miss Room 101 of Crime. Saturday 14th November 8:00PM on YouTube

Event News

July 2020 – Locked Up Festival

I’m very much looking forward to appearing at this great festival for a very good cause. Limited tickets are available.

Capital Crime, September 26th – 28th

Capital Crime logo

Capital Crime makes its  long awaited debut at the De Vere Grand Connaught Rooms, bringing crime fiction right to the heart of the capital. It promises a stella line up too, including, Don Winslow, Mark Billingham,  Robert Harris, Ian Rankin, Lynda La Plante, and Martina Cole. I’ll be attending the event, so if you see me during your visit, do come over and say hi.

New Project: July 2019
It’s been a busy couple of months so far. I’ve read some amazing books and attended a few book launches, and events. Now it’s time to dust off the old typewriter – oops, I mean laptop, and write something new.

Another successful  Bloody Scotland International Crime Writing Festival and  huge thanks goes out to the organisers. As for the match, well I was transfer listed to England, battled in a hard fought match, and scored to put England  ahead 2-1. Ended up on the winning side  once again with the match ending 6-3 or 6-2 depending on where you read it.

Bloody Scotland is back again, running from Sept 21-23, with some great events and fantastic writers. I’ll be there taking part in the competitive football (soccer) match between Scotland and England for The Bloody Cup. Last year provided plenty of thrills and spills, and ended in a 6-3 win for Scotland. Kick off is Sat 22nd at 2pm and it’s destined to have blood, sweat, and tears.

Bouchercon 2018 Round-Up

I had a great time at Bouchercon 2018 in Florida, USA.
A big thank you to all those who enjoyed my ‘Small and Mighty – Small Press Publishers’ panel and ‘New Author Breakfast’ presentation. It was great to be in the company of such amazing authors and a big thank you to all those new readers, and new friends.

Bouchercon, World Mystery Convention
September 6th -9th 2018
Florida, USA

I’m very excited to announce that I’ll be appearing at this year’s Bouchercon 2018 in St. Petersburg, Florida. I’m looking forward to meeting the convention’s crime fiction fans, so do come along and say “hi”.

Small and Mighty-Small Press Publishers
Thursday, September 6th.

The New Author Breakfast
Friday, September 7th.

Free Dead Lands Audio Book

Congratulations if you’re one of the lucky few readers that have received the special promotional audio book code. To get your free Dead Lands audio book, please follow these instructions:

1. Go to

2. Search for my title at the top right of the page, or go straight to my audiobook’s listing at

3. Add my audiobook to your basket and click the basket icon at the top right hand corner of the website.

4. If prompted, sign into your account or create a new Audible account.

5. Beneath the audiobook in your basket, you will see “Do you have a promotional code?” Click on this link, enter your promo code, and click “Apply Code”. Please know that only one promo code can be applied per purchase.

6. Click “Next Step” and you will then see in the “Apply Credits” column a check mark within a box and next to that the words “1 credit.” Next, click “Complete” to checkout.

Please note: You need to either register or be registered at Audible/Amazon to redeem the code.

The Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival returned from 19-22 July, with Jack Reacher creator Lee Child as Programming Chair. There were some great line-ups and I popped down there to show my support to my fellow authors and met up with the man behind Tuva Moodyson, Will Dean.


Read my 9mm interview  here on the international Crime Watch blog, where I talk about Marvel comics, motorbikes and a little bit more. 5th June 2018

Crimefest 2018 – 10th Anniversary

Debut Authors: An Infusion Of Fresh Blood
My appearance on Crimefest’s debut author’s panel alongside Iain Maitland, Alex Dahl, Will Dean and Vicky Newham. Moderated by The Telegraph’s Jake Kerridge.

Crimefest 2018

Join me in Bristol where I’ll will be appearing on two  panels at Crimefest 2018, alongside a group of great authors. I’ll be discussing Dead Lands at this year’s international crime fiction convention which runs from 17th – 20th May. For more information click here to view the programme.

Read my ‘New Author Profile’ interview in the February 2018 issue of the UK’s bestselling Writing Magazine (out now).

Writing Magazine February 2018

It’s 2018 and we welcome in the New Year.  Dead Lands is now available on 

The Dead Lands Unabridged Audiobook will be released on the 14th December 2017, narrated by actor Ben Onwukwe. Ben has appeared in EastEnders, Coronation Street, Doctors, and London’s Burning. The Audiobook can be ordered here.

Book cover and narrator

Narrated by: Ben Onwukwe
Length: 10 hrs and 7 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release Date: 14/12/2017
Publisher: Audible Studios

Read my author interview for Crime Fiction Lover here

Read my guest post on Shots Mag Blog here

DEAD LANDS BLOG TOUR  | October 12th – November 7th           

October 12th – Dead Lands Launch

Dead Lands launched in central London and I was really excited to finally introduce Breck and Kearns to everyone. Amid the drinks, feverish chatter and background music, the past came back in full swing. Special mentions went out to Team Dead Lands, which included the Urbane team and bloggers on the tour, also to fellow crime writers and friends in attendance – then the book signing got underway. It was a great night and oh, the Dead Lands cupcakes were pretty good too.

8th – 10th September

Bloody Scotland


Being selected for ‘Crime in the Spotlight’ is like being asked to be the support band on a major stadium tour. A bit like what Travis were to Oasis. Two years ago Graeme Macrae Burnet appeared ‘in the spotlight’ immediately before Ian Rankin, one year later he was shortlisted for The Man Booker. It’s a great opportunity to perform in front of a vast audience of potential fans.

The Directors of Bloody Scotland have selected the authors and paired them with the acts they will be supporting this year.

Your chance to be in at the birth of some great careers!

– Val McDermid. CWA Cartier Diamond Dagger 2010 Winner, and Anthony Award for Best Critical/Non-Fiction book 2016 Winner.

Crime in the Spotlight List
Crime in the Spotlight Authors

I’ll also be appearing in the competitive England v Scotland football match.

Crime in the Spotlight reading

29th June 2017 – Crime In the Court 

Catch me at Crime in the Court 6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.  alongside a host of your favourite authors at Goldsboro Books,  23/25 Cecil Court, London WC2N 4EZ.

Thank you for visiting