Who get punished?

Unpunished Book Cover Unpunished
Gardiner and Renner Thrillers #3?
Lisa Black
Crime, Thriller & Mystery, Police procedurals
Kensington
Jan 2017

Maggie Gardiner, a forensic expert who studies the dead, and Jack Renner, a homicide cop who stalks the living, form an uneasy partnership to solve a series of murders in this powerful new thriller by the bestselling author of That Darkness.

It begins with the kind of bizarre death that makes headlines—literally. A copy editor at the Cleveland Herald is found hanging above the grinding wheels of the newspaper assembly line, a wide strap wrapped around his throat. Forensic investigator Maggie Gardiner has her suspicions about this apparent suicide inside the tsunami of tensions that is the news industry today—and when the evidence suggests murder, Maggie has no choice but to place her trust in the one person she doesn’t trust at all . . .

Jack Renner is a killer with a conscience, a vigilante with his own code of honor. In the past, Jack has used his skills and connections as a homicide detective to take the law into his own hands, all in the name of justice. He has only one problem: Maggie knows his secret. She insists he enforce the law, not subvert it. But when more newspaper employees are slain, Jack may be the only person who can help Maggie unmask the killer-- even if Jack is still checking names off his own private murder list.detective

This story is centred around a forensic examiner who is as nosy as they all seem to be. She (as they tend to be in this genre) is never happy with the easy answer and always finds extra clues.

That said, I really enjoyed this novel. I had not read the previous books about this forensic/detective/killer combination and as a fan of the TV series ‘Dexter’ I was hooked by Renner.

I found both characters believable and the writing had me guessing the ending wrongly – so good for Lisa!

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Where to find a body?

The Body in the Marsh Book Cover The Body in the Marsh
DCI Craig Gillard
Nick Louth
mystery, suspense, crime,
Canelo
(25 Sept. 2017)
Kindle

When a woman goes missing, it gets personal for DCI Craig Gillard. But he could never imagine what happens next.

Criminologist Martin Knight lives a gilded life and is a thorn in the side of the police. But then his wife Liz goes missing. There is no good explanation and no sign of Martin…

To make things worse, Liz is the ex-girlfriend of DCI Craig Gillard who is drawn into the investigation. Is it just a missing person or something worse? And what relevance do the events around the shocking Girl F case, so taken up by Knight, have to do with the present?

The truth is darker than you could ever have imagined.

A gripping novel that I couldn’t put down – until I guessed the ending about 3/4 of the way through. Shame, otherwise it would have been a 5 not a 4.

Still, if you like a UK police/detective novel, this one is for you. The ending should be a surprise (and rather gruesome at that) for many but there are clues in there – if you know something about chess….

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When questions are bad

Ask No Questions Book Cover Ask No Questions
Detective Caelan Small #1
Lisa Hartley
female sleuths, mystery, crime fiction
Kindle

Some secrets were meant to stay hidden… Trust no-one

After an operation goes badly wrong, undercover specialist Detective Caelan Small leaves the Metropolitan Police for good. Or so she thinks. Then the criminal responsible is seen back in the UK.

Soon Caelan is drawn back into a dangerous investigation. But when the main lead is suddenly murdered, all bets are off. Nothing is as it seems. Everyone is a suspect - even close colleagues.

Someone in the Met is involved and Caelan is being told to Ask No Questions.

That isn't an option: Caelan needs answers… whatever the cost.

The nerve-shredding new crime thriller from bestseller Lisa Hartley starts a must-read new series. Perfect for fans of Angela Marsons and Robert Bryndza, it will keep you guessing until the very end.

A taut thriller in LisaHartley’s usual slick style.

Caelen is 28 years old and already a legend for her her uncanny ability to be a chameleon in her undercover work. In the stroy we follow Caelen and Ronnie with an addictive interest as she hopes that he will lead her to his criminal father, and he hopes that he won’t.

But things are not as they appear and the story becomes more complicated. And more complicated. And yet more complicated.

And in the end, just too complicated for me – and I like a bit of complication in my books…

I suspect an Agatha Christie look-alike storyline in which the author doesn’t actually know herself who  dun it, until the very end, and lays down many clues so that it could be one of many.

I’d like to give this book a 4 but in the end find I can’t. For the reasons above. When you have some 5 suspects the story gets too complex and involved and almost unbelievable. Clues appear like magic to fit up too many….

So 3.5 it is.

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Where does the money come from?

Hush Money Book Cover Hush Money
Hush Money Mystery #1
TE Woods
mystery, suspense, crime,
Alibi
(22 Aug. 2017)
Kindle

The mayor is smart, funny, and loved by all. Except for the person who leaves him in a pool of his own blood. . . .

Madison is booming with dreamers and drifters, visionaries and entrepreneurs. Among them is Sydney Richardson, the daughter of a cop who died on these streets and now the proud, stressed-out owner of Hush Money, one of the city’s top new restaurants. Like everyone else in town, Sydney is shocked when Madison’s popular mayor—a crusty, charismatic man of the people—is shot to death in his own home. But the news hits especially close to home for Sydney because one of her own stands accused of the brutal crime.

Sydney’s the one person that Wanda Fields, a quiet, hardworking waitress and single mother, can think to call after her arrest. Now she might be Wanda’s only hope. As Sydney gets wrapped up in the case, she runs up against powerful people with secrets to hide—and a mayor who wasn’t the person everyone thought he was. After Wanda divulges a bombshell of her own, Sydney’s sure the real killer is still out there, hiding among Madison’s elite, perhaps even dining in her beloved restaurant . . . with more than enough motive to kill again.

A gently written story that pulls you along steadily with good characterisation until the final denouement.

The novel shows well the lack of sophistication of the town in which it is set when the new restaurateur finds that on a Sunday night at 9.30pm all the customers have gone, and that on other nights 10pm is last orders!

{And a side point, English wine is now regarded as good, note that Champagne Taittinger announced it was buying a vineyard in Kent and would produce an English sparkling wine; and:- English sparkling wine specifically has been highly praised for its quality, beating Champagne in some competitions, and collecting a total of 130 medals and trophies in the 2015 Decanter World Wine Awards.}

So the town shows its small town politics in this novel, with the intrigue that comes with a small population jockeying for power and prestige.

This novel is very different from TE Wood’s ‘Fixer’ novels in both style and content and thus shows her versatility as a writer.

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Kate’s back in the Park

Less Than a Treason Book Cover Less Than a Treason
Kate Shugak #21
Dana Stabenow
female sleuths, mystery, crime fiction
Head of Zeus
May 6, 2017
320

Two thousand people go missing in Alaska every year. They vanish in the middle of mountain footraces, on fishing boats in the Bering Sea, on small planes in the Bush. Now a geologist known for going walkabout with his rock hammer has disappeared from the Suulutaq Mine in the Park. Was it deliberate? An accident? Foul play? Native Aleut Private Investigator Kate Shugak may be the only person who can find out. But for the fact that Kate, too, is now among the missing...

 

Kate returns after her  – and Mutt’s – shooting to her role as a PI and meanwhile Jim Chopin has inherited a substantial sum from his father and left the Mounties. He has settled in Kate’s homestead and built himself an airstrip and hangar and buys a nice plane too.

Really on form.

 

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