Mike Silverman

Written in Blood

As one of the UK’s leading forensic scientists, Mike Silverman has helped to identify and convict dozens of murderers, rapists, armed robbers, burglars and muggers thanks to the evidence they – or their victims – unwittingly left behind at the scenes of their crimes.

Silverman started his career in the days when fingerprints were still kept on card files and DNA profiling was just a pipe dream, so Written in Blood is more than just a casebook – it is also a definitive history of the development of forensic science over the course of the past thirty-five years.

From collecting blood samples at gangland executions to investigating forensic science failings, including in the murders of Rachel Nickell and Damilola Taylor, Mike Silverman’s unique career provides a fascinating insight into the ways forensic science is used to help solve real-world crimes.

Packed with genuine crime scene photographs and original sketches, Written in Blood is the ultimate insider’s account of the fascinating world of forensic science.

Written in Blood

Published in hardback by Bantam Press, ISBN 9780593071892 available for purchase now on-line from Amazon. UPDATED PAPERBACK EDITION now available (7th May 2015), published by Corgi Books, ISBN 9780552169318


The Biologist - Opinion article.

Police Oracle articles - 7 January 201412 January 2014

"The remarkable casebook of one of Britain's top forensic scientists. This book is not for the faint-hearted. Don't expect to tiptoe into the shallow end and ease yourself into gory detail. From the first page, Silverman gives you a sharp shove between the shoulder blades and sends you face-first into the pool..." - Dr Anna Williams BBC Focus Magazine, click to view full review

"Mike Silverman goes after the guilty - it's in his DNA. And it's not just criminals who are brought to book by his finely honed forensic skills. Written In Blood is an apt title. There's bucket-loads of it here. Silverman's special expertise is blood pattern analysis and he's very good at it." - Daily Express, click to view full review

"Prepare to be shocked as Silverman reveals what went on behind the scenes and demonstrates that scientists, even forensic scientists, are only human. If you like science, forensics, modern history and politics, or just a good read, you will enjoy this book." - Dr Oliver Jones The Biologistclick to view full review

" I found this book unusually gripping from the start. Although this is essentially a biography, in recollecting his very diverse experiences Mike is able to give the reader an insight into some of the significant decisions and events that have shaped the provision of forensic science in the UK....Mike recounts his UK and overseas experiences with candour and humour and for me this was a walk down memory lane. It is a thoroughly good read which I recommend to you all." - Dr Ann Priston, President, The Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences, click to view full review

"Silverman gives fascinating insight into many of the cases that have dominated the headlines since 1974 until his retirement - cases such as Damilola Taylor, Rachel Nickell, Stephen Lawrence, Sally Clark and Jill Dando." - Alisdair Logan, The Justice Gap, click to view full review


"This is a book that every crime writer should have in their library." - Lynda La Plante CBE FSSoc.

"We thought DNA would provide the answers we are looking for but with possible human error added to the mix can we be sure of the results? This book poses a worrying question. A fascinating read." - David Greenhorne

"Although there is obviously a fair amount of science in the book, Mike Silverman makes his subject completely accessible to a non-scientific reader like me, especially through his sometimes horrific, sometimes amusing, but always fascinating anecdotes. It was a real eye opener in many ways - from the politics to the explanation of what a forensic scientist really does. It will certainly change the way I read crime novels in future!" - S R

"Fascinating reading. Provides a thorough insight into the actual world of a forensic scientist as opposed to the TV portayal." - P S

"Excellent book, well written and very interesting. Having heard Mike Silverman on Radio 4 decided to get this book and wasn't disappointed." - Jane Wallington

"To anyone even a little bit interested in Forensics or CSI, this is a great read. Mike succinctly describes a number of real cases that he worked on, giving the reader the lowdown on how these investigations actually proceed in the forensic workplace, which is often quite removed from the CSI fiction. Cleverly interspersed with these casework histories Mike describes the major aspects of his own career path, and provides some fascinating insight into the politics involved in the interplay between the Forensic Science Service and other major players in the world of crime investigation, events which ultimately led to the demise of the Home Office forensic science setup in the UK. I view the book as a former Forensic Scientist myself, but I think that any reader would get a lot out of this volume." - G. Carter

© SFS Forensic Strategies Ltd. 2023

Site by vannio & swargh