Shortlisted for the 2009 Ellis Peters Award for Best Historical Crime Novel.

The second novel in the DI Stratton series begins in summer, 1944. After almost five years of conflict, London’s exhausted inhabitants, pounded by the menace of Hitler’s V1 bombs, are living in a world of dereliction. War-weary DI Ted Stratton is no exception, but he cannot help being drawn in by his latest case.

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Called on to investigate when a doctor is found dead in Fitzrovia’s Middlesex Hospital, Stratton soon realises that someone involved is not who they appear to be. Someone who has discarded their own identity and can move and kill freely.

Meanwhile Jenny, Ted’s wife, is working at the local Rest Centre, although her spirit of ‘make-do and mend’ is wearing thin, but when Stratton helps to dig Mrs Ingram out of her bombed-out home, Jenny agrees to help look after her. When Mrs Ingram declares that the man claiming to be her husband is an imposter, Jenny assumes that it is due to shock. The reality, however, is far stranger and much more dangerous…

Ultimately, for Stratton and Jenny, there is only one thing they can trust: their fear. And for one of them, that fear may prove all too real. An Empty Death is a compelling exploration of identity, memory and trust, and is perfect for fans of Foyle’s War.

Reviews for An Empty Death

Intense and tragic, it’s a fine crime novel with plenty of unexpected twists.
Joan Smith, Sunday Times – Best Crime Fiction of 2009

Wilson’s series of detective novels set around the time of the Second World War has become one of the genre’s great pleasures.
John Williams, Mail on Sunday


An Empty Death – US edition

Wilson skilfully evokes the atmosphere of 1940s London in this deftly plotted and thought-provoking thriller.
The Good Book Guide

An Empty Death, a welcome sequel to the prize-winning Stratton’s War, is a vividly atmospheric picture of London in summer 1944.
Jesscia Mann, The Literary Review

Laura Wilson’s likeable hero DI Ted Stratton returns in An Empty Death… Wilson made her name as a writer of brilliant psychological thrillers. In this enjoyable series, she combines that skill with an eye for fascinating period detail.
Mat Coward, Morning Star

Wilson is very good indeed at creating precise historical context, whether it’s the Strattons’ suburban home or the medical profession in the early 1940s. She achieves it in the subtlest and most effective ways, building up layers of unobtrusive detail that gradually become utterly convincing. Stratton and his family (including the brother-in-law from hell) are solidly realised characters, as is the sad individual whose sense of failure lies behind at least part of this richly textured and very satisfying murder mystery.
Andrew Taylor, The Spectator

…you believe precisely what she intends you to believe so that when the twist comes, unexpected but convincing, you are sucker-punched.
N.J. Cooper, CrimeTime

A gripping read with a powerful emotional punch.
Cath Staincliffe, Tangled Web