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A.A. Dhand: Pharmacist crime author to publish new novel The Chemist

Pharmacist A.A. Dhand’s next crime novel is set for publication in spring 2025, with a plot inspired by his own experiences of “drugs, dealers and incredible stories of maverick drug-deals”.

A.A. Dhand’s next novel, The Chemist, will be released in spring 2025, his publisher HQ announced today (April 24).

The pharmacist turned bestselling crime novelist said that he has worked on The Chemist “for some time”.

The upcoming novel was inspired by Dhand’s experiences as a pharmacist of “drugs, dealers and incredible stories of maverick drug-deals”, HQ added.

Read more: ‘Virdee’: Pharmacist crime novelist’s bestsellers to be made into BBC series

His latest book focuses on a pharmacist, Idris Kalia, who “spends his days doling out methadone to the hundreds of addicts in his care”, it said.

“When his childhood sweetheart doesn't turn up for her daily dose, Idris goes looking for her in the most deprived area of Leeds,” it added.

Read more: Podcast – Pharmacists after Hours Ep.3: The crime fiction author

Circumstances land the fictional pharmacist in a “turf war between the two most powerful drug cartels in Yorkshire”, it said. 

The Chemist is the first part of “a planned series” and Dhand recently signed a two-book deal with HQ, a HarperCollins imprint, the publisher revealed.


“When the world of Dexter collides with Breaking Bad”


Dhand said he is “fusing fact with fiction” in The Chemist to create a “thrilling journey…unlike anything they’ve seen before”.

“What happens when the world of Dexter collides with Breaking Bad? You get The Chemist!” he added.

Publisher Manpreet Grewal said she was “blown away” by the new novel, adding that Dhand is “a master of pacy and hard-hitting storytelling”.

Read more: 'I've always loved to read': The pharmacist with a passion for writing romantic fiction

Dhand, who was raised in Bradford, is the author of five previous novels and has been shortlisted for the CWA Steel Dagger Award, HQ said.
In August, the BBC announced that it had commissioned a six-part series called Virdee, based on the detective novels by Dhand.
The series will introduce the titular cop – played by Sacha Dhawan who is known for Doctor Who, The Great, and Wolf – whose personal life is “in chaos” after his Sikh family disowns him for marrying a Muslim woman.

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