Knock Knock. Chris Merritt

 

The first of a new series in a crowded field. So how did it stand up to the competition.

I really enjoyed it.

The two main characters are easy to like and engage with.

DI Dan Lockhart is leading his first case as Senior Investigating Officer with the Mets MIT8. The team are tasked with finding the killer of a woman that has been tied to a chair and had a steel ball forced down her throat. The team soon link this to a previous murder but somebody is already in custody for that. So was the original investigation wrong, or is their a copycat killer

Dan is in therapy with Dr Lexi Green, but for once in this type of book it’s not work related. Lexi is helping Dan with psychological issues which she believes stem from the loss of his wife. Loss in this case being that she went missing whilst he was serving in the army and has never been seen since. Dans ongoing search for his wife is taking its toll

When another woman is killed Dan employs Lexi as a Criminal Psychologist, much to the disdain of his team.

As the bodies mount up everybody involved in the investigation seems to have their own theory on who the killer is. Tensions in the MIT are reflected by the tension that builds between Lockhart and Green.

There is a bit of an inevitably to the path the story takes towards the end but it has set up a fantastic story thread for future books.

The epilogue deceivers a great punch linked to a small section of the book I’d almost forgotten, but what an impact it had. I was already looking forward to the next book, now I’m desperate to get my hands on it

Publishers: Bookouture

Pages: 416

Publishing date: 17th March 2020

A Christmas Present Recommendation 1

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I’ve had a few people asking me to recommend books to buy for Christmas presents. So, on the run up to Christmas I’m going to make a few recommendations based on books that I have reviewed this year.

The first I’m going to recommend is not a single book but a series of 3 great novels that have all been released in the last 12 months.

Patricia Gibney is an author based in Ireland and started writing as a form of therapy following the death of her husband. The stories she writes are complex, and cover some very nasty, but unfortunately common, crimes.

Her main protagonist is a troubled Detective Inspector, Lottie Parker.

Lottie is a strong character; a single mom, struggling at various times with drink and prescription drugs, but she has strong morals.

The stories in the three books are self-contained,  but the characters run through each book. As much as I loved the books for their gritty, multi-layered, storylines, I loved them even more for their rich characters. Lottie’s Police team, and her family, cause her pride and consternation in equal measures.

If you are looking to buy a set of books for somebody, or just want to treat yourself, this would be my top recommendation for a new series which has started this year.

I have a family friend, Coupons, (as her son calls her Coupons in his blogs its good enough for me) who’s in her 70’s. She’s an avid reader and loves everything from a romance to a bit of crime.

My daughter is 26 and works in the West Midlands Police, she likes realistic hard-hitting crime books.

I have recommended these books to both of them. I know I’m on safe ground when I can tell both of them they will love the Lottie Parker series. They are realistic crime thrillers with tremendous characters.

So my first recommendation for a Christmas Present, from this year’s publications, is a complete, but ongoing series;

The Missing Ones

The Stolen Girls

The Lost Child

Written by Patricia Gibney and published by Bookouture.

The links below are to my original reviews of the books.

They are all available on Amazon

https://nigeladamsbookworm.wordpress.com/2017/01/22/the-missing-ones-patricia-gibney/

https://nigeladamsbookworm.wordpress.com/2017/05/28/the-stolen-girls/

https://nigeladamsbookworm.wordpress.com/2017/09/23/the-lost-child-patricia-gibney/

The Cover Up Marnie Riches

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This is the second book in the Manchester series by Marnie Riches and follows on shortly after the end of the first book Born Bad.

With Paddy O’Brien, the main gangland boss, gone Manchester is up for grabs, but who is going to take control.

Paddy’s wife Sheila is trying to assume his roll, but will anybody take her seriously. They should, she has his old Henchman Conky close at hand, very close at hand, and he is quite happy to dispense violent retribution on anybody who crosses his new girlfriend.

She is also aided by the scripture quoting grandmother Gloria.

Gloria is the “straight” business partner of Sheila who helped her set up a legitimate cleaning company; but now things are getting dodgy, she is wondering around Manchester with a shopping trolley loaded with a gun and ammunition. This oxymoron of a woman is probably one of the best fictional characters I’ve read for a long time.

Sheila’s main threat is coming from a new quarter. Nigel Bancroft is a Brummie who, as well as running a legitimate, and successful property development business, is also the gangland boss of the Midlands.

Brummie Nigel wants to move into Manchester and goes about trying to muscle into O’Brien territory to get a foothold in the north-west city.

Meanwhile the O’Briens main rivals in Manchester, the Boddington Gang, is also trying to take control. This gang is in the mist of an internal struggle as the two head men, Tariq and Jonny, are at loggerheads about everything except taking over the O’Briens business.

All the time the Police are watching and waiting for any crack to appear in the gang’s armour. Detective Ellis James is determined to bring the gangs to task, but how far will he go to get that vital piece of evidence.

Just to throw a spanner in the works somebody else is watching from a distance. Somebody with an axe to grind, somebody who wants revenge, somebody who wants back what he considers his property, and he is prepared to go to any lengths to get it.

This book is written in a way that at times had me laughing at its dark humour, and at other times has me wincing with its violence.

The storyline is a masterful journey of twists and turns with the occasional surprise that had me thinking “no way” and at the same time “brilliant”.

I loved the story, I loved the characters, I can’t wait for the next instalment.

 

Pages: 400

Published by Avon

Publishing date: 11 January 2018