Skip to content

Radio 2 Book Club - The Cut

The next book to be featured on the Radio 2 Book Club with Steve Wright will be The Cut, a brilliant twisty new thriller from bestselling author Chris Brookmyre. The book was released on 4 March and Chris will be on the show on Thursday 1 April.

We have the chance for you to win 10 copies of this fantastic novel for your reading group! Please enter by Friday 9 April.

Not yet a member of Reading Groups for Everyone? Sign up now.

We have an exclusive extract available for you to read. We also have some discussion questions for your group to use.

The Cut

Millie Spark can kill anyone.

A special effects make-up artist, her talent is to create realistic scenes of bloody violence.

Then, one day, she wakes to find her lover dead in her bed.

Twenty-five years later, her sentence for murder served, Millicent is ready to give up on her broken life – until she meets troubled film student and reluctant petty thief Jerry.

Together, they begin to discover that all was not what it seemed on that fateful night…and someone doesn’t want them to find out why.

Selection panel review

The book was selected with the help of a panel of library staff from across the UK. Our readers loved The Cut – here are some of their comments:

“I thoroughly and unexpectedly enjoyed this book. It’s the first of his that I’ve read, the blurb has never looked to be my sort of thing so I was really surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. It’s a good page-turning thriller but none of the psychological nonsense that seems to inhabit every thriller nowadays. Instead, it was quite funny, quite black, and quite topical. I really fell for our two protagonists; Jerry, a student with a dodgy past who is trying to go straight and 70-year-old Millicent, fresh from prison and trying to uncover how she was wrongfully put there. They make a great pairing and I was rooting for them the whole way as they travel through Europe. It’s a pretty big book at over 500 pages but I whizzed through it wanting to know how it was all going to resolve itself. It’s set in Glasgow and is a good page-turner, great fun and a great adventure.”

“This is an unusual story and an unexpected delight to read. Whilst I initially found the two main characters quite unlikeable, they both changed and became much more likeable and complex as you got to know them.”

“I loved this book – a great crime thriller, but also an enjoyable and funny novel with really well-drawn characters. I would question anyone who doesn’t fall for Millicent and Jerry, however much they try to keep people at arm’s length to start with! I’ve read almost all of Brookmyre’s books, and would recommend them all, but this is a great one for new readers to start with, as is a complete stand-alone novel from the rest (but once you’ve read it, go back to the earlier ones!)”

About the author

Chris Brookmyre is one of Britain’s most acclaimed authors, having been nominated or won 21 awards, including winning the UK’s top crime awards, the Theakstons and McIlvanney.

Little Brown has sold over 2 million novels by Brookmyre, making him one of the country’s biggest selling crime writers.

A word from Chris

“One of the things I have missed most during the pandemic has been doing library events, which is why in this year of all years I am particularly pleased that The Cut should be selected for the Radio 2 Book Club. Not only is writing a novel such a solitary process, but you spend all this time and effort crafting characters, events and revelations knowing you won’t be present to witness the moment the reader experiences them. Library events and book group discussions provide the next best thing: a chance to hear people talk about how they related to your characters, whether they saw the twists coming, what made them laugh, what made them scared, and even what glaring plot-holes they spotted.

My love of libraries is documented in the novel itself, because one of the pivotal moments comes when a character visits the magnificent Mitchell Library in Glasgow and discovers a shocking truth in its microfiche archive of old newspapers. I am sure we can all relate to that feeling of having uncovered hidden treasure at the library, which is why I can’t wait to hear what readers made of my novel.”

Get involved

Tune in to the Steve Wright show on Thursday 1 April to hear a live interview with Chris.

Have you read The Cut, or any of Chris’ other novels? You can share your thoughts with us on Twitter using #R2BookClub and you can also follow Chris

Planning to buy The Cut for your group? Buy books from Hive and support The Reading Agency and local bookshops at no extra cost to you.

Want to make sure you get the latest news? Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

You can join the Radio 2 Book Club Facebook group


Log in or Sign up to add a comment


Keeping your reading group active while social distancing

Are you wondering how your reading group can continue to meet, even while you’re social distancing? With many people at home with family, flatmates or on their own, we know that books are so important to provide comfort, solace and escapism. Staying socially connected, and keeping your regular reading group meetings in your diary, is going to be very important in keeping up morale and supporting everyone’s mental health as we adjust to a new way of living.


How to start a reading group

Interested in joining a reading group or starting one of your own? Download our quick guide to getting started.


Hive and The Reading Agency

The Reading Agency loves books, in every form, and we know you do too. We love it when people borrow books in every format from their brilliant local libraries. We love it when reading groups get exclusive free proofs from our publisher partners. We love it when readers pick up a pre-loved book from a second-hand bookshop for a song. And we also love it when you buy yourself or someone else a brand new book from a high street bookshop. We also know that buying online is quick and convenient...

View our other programmes