Although this is the 3rd book in a series, and the first I’ve read, it didn’t seem like it. In fact I only realised it was when I came to the end and the authors previous books are listed
Is this a good thing, yes, because it means the book can obviously read as a stand- alone, but as much as I enjoyed it, I didn’t want to go and find the previous books to catch up with the back story.
And that’s where this is a conundrum of a book to review because I really enjoyed the story without engaging with the main characters, DI Matt Denning and DS Molly Fisher.
The story starts with somebody being recognised after 30 years, by somebody else who was a victim. The red mist comes down and……that’s where the prologue ends and sets up the mystery for the rest of the book.
Retired DCI Frank Buckfield is found murdered having lived the last few years of his life in squalor. Some officers remember him fondly but others remember him as a bully who got results any way he could.
This is followed by a serious assault on an academic. The man had been reported missing by his sister over 20 years ago and had apparently never been found, so how could he have been working in a University so recently. One look at him shows he’s much younger than the man who was reported missing and must be somebody who’s assumed his identity. But why.
The connections between the two victims seems to point back to a major robbery, one that Buckfield had made his name by arresting the major players in.
Meanwhile a historic child abuse ring starts to appear on the periphery of the investigation. High profile men, including a Judge, and MP and a Senior Police Officer had been abusing young homeless or vulnerable boys.
As the investigation gathers pace some current Senior Police Officers seem to be against some of the lines of inquiry.
Denning and Fisher continue with the investigation against the advice of these officers, and sometimes in isolation from each other.
But are the modern day crimes connected with the historic ones. Is their a serial killer stalking the streets, or is this an act of revenge.
I really enjoyed this book. I enjoyed the story and the way the author led me down the occasional cul-de-sac where I was convinced I knew who was responsible, only to have my hypothesis wiped out several times.
I will read the future books when they come out, but not because I’ve engaged with the characters, which is usually what hooks me into a series, but because the story was so good.
Pages: 288. Publisher: Hera. Publishing date: 13th January 2021