😀 😀 😀 😀 😀
With this book, Jane Casey has laid claim to her place in the ranks of the current detective fiction greats – Rankin, Bauer, Bolton. Her first novel The Missing was good, the second The Burning was very good and this third entry is better yet.
The plotting in this novel shows a clear improvement over the first two books. Complex and with original twists, Casey is not afraid to take us to very dark places but is also skilled enough to lighten the tone with some humour when needed. The book starts with the discovery of the bodies of two known paedophiles who have been tortured and then murdered. Is this the beginning of a serial killing spree or are there more complicated, perhaps even darker, motives at work? Casey keeps the plot moving at an impressive pace throughout and maintains suspense to the end.
In Maeve Kerrigan, Casey has created a likeable, believable young detective with the intelligence, initiative and determination to go far. Maeve is refreshingly normal, as detectives go, and I hope the author lets her remain so. She has a life outside work, normal relationships with her family and an enjoyable romantic liaison with one of her colleagues, with all the minor problems and complications that come with that. More realistically than the lone maverick detective we all know so well, Maeve is a team player who works well with her colleagues and does her best to please her boss whom she both respects and admires.
If I have a criticism, it is that sometimes the author breaks away from Maeve’s first person narrative to show us the action from someone else’s perspective. While I can see that this is useful, since it would be unrealistic for one detective constable to be present at every scene, I do find it breaks the flow, and I’m not sure the different voices are distinctive enough. However, Casey has done this much less in this novel than in the previous ones, and that for me is a real improvement. In any case, this small point does not stop this from being an excellent read and I hope we see much more of Maeve in the years to come.
NB This book was provided for review by Amazon Vine UK.