Meddling Kids, by Edgar Cantero, Titan Books RRP£8.99/ Anchor RRP$16.95
A hugely entertaining spoof of Scooby-Doo that wonders what might have happened to those four “meddling kids” and their dog after the allure of mystery-solving palled and they grew up. The novel gleefully merges Lovecraftian horror with eco-catastrophe, managing to provide some real scares amid the ironic laughs.
One Way, by SJ Morden, Gollancz RRP£13.99/$15.99
After a slow lift-off, SJ Morden’s Agatha-Christie-in-space thriller accelerates to warp speed and becomes an engrossing whodunnit. Seven convicts have their life sentences commuted in return for becoming the first Martian colonists — only to get bumped off one by one. The red planet was never bloodier.
Fury from the Tomb, by SA Sidor, Angry Robot RRP£7.99/$27
Pulp-fiction pastiches are hardly rare these days but few are as artfully executed as this one, which brings together ancient mummies, cursed tombs, loathsome monsters and Mexican bandits. Narrated by a young Egyptologist blissfully lacking in self-awareness, it’s a tongue-in-cheek joy from start to finish.