Go nowhere, read this!

Don't Let Go Book Cover Don't Let Go
Myron Bolitar
Harlan Coben
thrillers, suspense
Century
September 26, 2017
368

THE GLOBAL NUMBER ONE BESTSELLER The brilliant new thriller from the international bestselling author of Home and Fool Me Once. Mistaken identities, dark family secrets and a murderous conspiracy lie at the heart of this gripping new bestseller. 'The modern master of the hook and twist, luring you in on the first page only to shock you on the last,' Dan Brown 'Harlan Coben is a folk poet of the suburbs and his well-tuned new mystery, Don't Let Go shows why ... This kind of writing is what we call poetry.' New York Times A SMALL TOWN IS HIDING BIG SECRETS ... Fifteen years ago in New Jersey, a teenage boy and girl were found dead. Most people concluded it was a tragic suicide pact. The dead boy's brother, Nap Dumas, did not. Now Nap is a cop - but he's a cop who plays by his own rules, and who has never made peace with his past. And when the past comes back to haunt him, Nap discovers secrets can kill...

Harlan draws you in slowly to a story that initially seems very far-fetched. but the evidence accumulates.

And then the ending takes a wild twist and everything you thought you knew is unravelled. Twice. Or maybe more times.

It so didn’t happen as the reader – unless they are a lot more suspicious or canny or twisted or clever or.. than me could imagine. Clever Mr Coben.

Excellent understated writing as always. Almost conversational in tone and expression.

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What a Christmas….

Cold Xmas Book Cover Cold Xmas
DCI Antonia Hawkins
Alistair Gunn
british detectives, police procedural, female sleuths, murder, thriller
Penguin
(16 Nov. 2017)

In the small village of Cold Christmas there's a church that faces the wrong way . . . What has it to do with the three dead men found in a London flat? 

DCI Antonia Hawkins has a killer to catch. Only she can't predict what is waiting for her at the end of the chase. 

Nobody remembers the young men entering the abandoned London flat a few weeks ago. Nobody cares if they left.

Until the unbearable smell of decay.

DCI Antonia Hawkins is called in to view the dead men; three, lying neat in a row. There's no damage to the bodies, no obvious cause of death. Is this a suicide pact? Or is that just how it's meant to look?

If there is a link between the three very different men then Hawkins needs to find it, and fast. Because unless she does, more are going to die. And they might not all be strangers.

Overall a good new detective read for me with one main proviso – I am getting rather tired of what is now becoming a cliche – the female detective with angst and a rubbish love life.

A couple of other slightly irritating things – that cat needs to be put on a diet, and as all overweight cat owners know – a. you ignore their plaintive miaows for more food; b. you have them on a strict feeding schedule; and c. you use the special food for overweight cats – I can suggest a few brands if you like – biscuits are best.

Other small irritation is that I thought that all detectives had now learnt to keep wellie boots in their cars!

These small irritations detract me when I’m reading from a good story as they continue to bug me and I want to edit the story for the author, just as I edited my students’ work…. Which is a shame as this could have been a really good series for me, but as I also thought the ending unnecessary in its dolore, I’m downgrading to a 3.5/4.

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Not very far at all

Close to Home Book Cover Close to Home
D.I. Adam Fawley #1
Cara Hunter
police procedural, thriller, suspense
Penguin Random House /Viking
Dec 2017

How can a child vanish without a trace?

Last night, eight-year-old Daisy Mason disappeared from a family party. No one in the quiet suburban street saw anything - or at least that's what they're saying.

DI Adam Fawley is trying to keep an open mind. But he knows the nine times out of ten, it's someone the victim knew.

That means someone is lying.
And that Daisy's time is running out.

 

I would never have guessed the final twist in the tale!

I loved the Twitter feed throughout the story and the story just twists and turns all the time. Upsetting continually all that you thought you knew and understood.

This has a low key UK non-sensationalist  tone to the storyline, factual but….

 

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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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