The Chosen Ones – DI Robyn Carter #5 by Carol Wyer

REVIEW

Really enjoyed this gripping episode in the DI Robyn Carter series.

When a young man is murdered and left in a field in a ritualistic type pose, DI Carter is called to investigate.  With friends and family of the victim withholding information or out-right lying, Robyn finds that everyone seems to have a secret they do not wish to share.  When more bodies start turning up, the pressure is on to find the killer.

Unlike in some detective stories, DI Carter is not a one-man band, she uses the full force of her team and relies on their individual skills.  This book was not filled with an abundance of technical jargon which made it easy to read and follow the progress on the investigation.  I liked the flashback sequences that helped add to the suspense and mystery, they also provided some insight into the thinking of the suspects.

This was the first book I had read by this author and as such I had not read the previous books in this series. There is definitely an underlying backstory around the main characters, however this did not detract from my enjoyment of this book and has piqued my interest to find out what has happened before.  I will definitely be reading the other books in this series. I’m also keen to find out what is going to be next for DI Carter following her recent unexpected visitor.

An intriguing murder investigation that will keep you guessing.

Synopsis

They had not been forgiven. And they would never be forgotten …. 
When a doting young father is murdered and his body discovered in a cornfield for his family to see, it’s a harrowing new case for Detective Robyn Carter. But just as Robyn starts to investigate, a popular local doctor and young mother, is found dead outside her surgery. 

As Robyn tries to find the link between the victims, she uncovers a dark web of secrets. Were these much-loved members of the community as innocent as they seemed? 

The killer has a message for Robyn and the carefully chosen victims. Can Robyn get to the truth before she becomes the next target? 

(https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/39349291-the-chosen-ones)

The Killing Club – DS Heckenburg #3 by Paul Finch

REVIEW

Since reading the first Heckenburg book I was hooked on this series.  Now I am addicted to listening to them on audio.

Killing Club sees the return of the Nice Guys but with a little International influence.  Once again DS Mark Heckenburg finds himself in the center of the action despite his superiors’ best attempts to keep him well away.  As Heck starts to put the pieces together on some rather gruesome murders that are happening all across the country, others closer to home are keeping him in the dark.

We see the return of some familiar characters and find an unsuspecting hero in the most unlikeliest of places.  Engaging and action-packed, this story has us roaming from the south to north, even to the far reaches of Scotland in an attempt to prevent The Nice Guys from claiming any more not-so-innocent victims.

A surprise is in store at the end, I did not see that coming!  Love Heck and will continue to read/listen to any future books in the series.

Narrated by Paul Thornley

Synopsis

DS Mark ‘Heck’ Heckenburg is used to bloodbaths. But nothing can prepare him for this.

Heck’s most dangerous case to date is open again. Two years ago, countless victims were found dead – massacred at the hands of Britain’s most terrifying gang.

When brutal murders start happening across the country, it’s clear the gang is at work again. Their victims are killed in cold blood, in broad daylight, and by any means necessary. And Heck knows it won’t be long before they come for him.

Brace yourself as you turn the pages of a living nightmare. Welcome to The Killing Club.

(https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21059082-the-killing-club?ac=1&from_search=true)

Deep Fear – DI Kelly Porter #2 by Rachel Lynch

REVIEW

This is the second thrilling installment for DI Kelly Porter and is just as exciting as the first.  When a spate of gruesome murders take place with a very unique calling card, it is up to DI Porter and her team to track down the culprit and prevent them from striking again.  When someone close to Kelly becomes the possible next victim it is a race against time, time Kelly does not have.

Following on a few months after “Dark Game”, Kelly and her team have just settled back to normalcy when the nightmare begins all over again.  The same characters are back, as well as some new ones.  Nikki is still causing problems and it’s troubled water for Kelly and Johnny.

The suspect list is high and there is at least one unanswered question, which as I write this is bugging me more and more, but there are plenty of twist, turns and dead-ends to keep the story fresh and moving.

I love the descriptions of the views.  Ok, they are generally when someone is about to find a victim but I can still picture the sweeping hills, rocky terrain and deep valleys of the area.  Living somewhere completely flat I sometimes wish we had a little more elevation, which is why it is so nice to find some beautifully descriptive landscapes in this book.

Although the murders are not graphically described there are sections, finding the bodies and the morgue scenes, that some readers may find unsettling.   However, these scenes are essential for the overall story and add to evil, psychotic tendencies of the antagonist.

Thrills, chills and hills make up the exciting continuation of the DI Kelly Porter series.

Synopsis

DI Kelly Porter is back. 
But will this new case push her beyond her limits?
On a peaceful summer’s morning in the Lake District, a woman’s body is discovered outside a church. She’s been murdered and a brutal, symbolic act performed on her corpse. 
DI Kelly Porter is in charge of the team investigating the crime, and is determined to bring the killer to justice. But as more deaths occur it is clear this is the work of a disturbed, dangerous and determined individual. Can Kelly put the puzzle pieces together before the danger comes closer to home?

(https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/39864278-deep-fear)

 

Dark Game – DI Kelly Porter #1 by Rachel Lynch

REVIEW

Twists and turns send this detective deeper into a world she would rather not know exists.  A thrilling story based in the idyllic countryside of northern England, Dark Game provides a plot that is filled with suspense and intrigue.

This is the first book I have read by this author and I really enjoyed it.  The story seems to follow different threads but then finds them interlinking as the main character, DI  Kelly Porter, begins uncovering new leads and information.  DI Porter is a strong character, having previously worked in London, she knows that life is not all sunshine and roses.  Moving back to her hometown was supposed to give her a quieter life but when she reopens an old case, new information and current incidents soon shine a light on an underworld in human trafficking.

This story is well written and engaging, providing some great characters and interesting plot changes.  I hope to see more of Kelly and Johnny’s relationship growing over the course of the series (but that’s just me being  hopeless romantic!),  I just feel that she could do with someone to care for her and look out for her after everything life throws her way….including her sister (don’t like her at all).

This book does contain some violence and sexual related scenes, elements of human trafficking, prostitution and child abuse.

Looking forward to reading the next in the series – Deep Fear

Synopsis

Kelly’s gut turned over as she realised the danger she was in. She heard no sirens. She knew that she was simply collateral. To these men who made a lot of money from the suffering of others, they’d have no problem snuffing her out.

After a scandal forces D. I. Kelly Porter out of the Met, she returns to her home turf in the Lake District. Crimes in the Cumbrian constabulary tend to be of the minor sort, but Kelly begins work on a cold case that shocked the local community – the abduction and brutal murder of ten-year-old Lottie Davies.

Meanwhile, Kelly is also investigating two seemingly straightforward crimes: a case involving an illegal immigrant, and a robbery following the death of local businessman Colin Day. But evidence comes to light that reveals a web of criminal activity beyond anything Kelly imagined. Behind the veneer of sleepy, touristy towns lies a dark and dangerous underworld. As Kelly threatens to expose those with much to lose, she risks paying the ultimate price to get to the truth…

(https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/37067922-dark-game)

Sacrifice – DS Heckenburg #2 by Paul Finch

Audio Edition Narrated by Paul Thornley

REVIEW

DS Heckenburg is back in this chilling tale of brutal, ritual murders and grotesque sacrifices.

Following in the wake of the Nice Guys Club, Heck and the SCU team are still catching bad guys, or at least putting them out of commission, when a series of ritualistic murders comes to their attention.  As the crimes become more gruesome, the public more demanding,  and the ritual dates ever closer, Heck knows they need to work hard and fast to stop more fatalities especially when one of their own goes missing.

This story is fantastically graphic in its descriptions with some very detailed imagery that gets stuck inside your head, at least it does mine.  This author has a great knack for bringing characters to life, and then ultimately killing them off in some hideous fashion! There is always a great deal of detail given to every character, victim and villian, which pulls the reader into the story and makes you feel connected to them.

DS Heckenburg is by far my favourite detective (I will probably say this in every review because, quite frankly, it deserves to be said).  Although he is not old, he also knows that he is not young either and running around the countryside chasing the bad guys takes it toll on him.  Being bitten by an attack dog didn’t help matters either, however in this case Heck seemed to gain the least injuries out of the lot of them.  I’m still hoping for a little bit of loving to come Heck’s way, he deserves some tenderness in his life, and I’m secretly cheering for Gemma. She may be a lioness but I think she still has a very big soft spot for our Heck, only time will tell.

Next in the Heckenburg series – The Killing Club

Synopsis

A vicious serial killer is holding the country to ransom, publicly—and gruesomely—murdering his victims.

When a man is burnt alive on a bonfire, it seems like a tragic Guy Fawkes Night accident. But with the discovery of a young couple on Valentine’s Day— each with an arrow through the heart—something more sinister becomes clear. A ‘calendar killer’ is on the loose.

Detective Mark ‘Heck’ Heckenburg is up against it. With a rising body count and the public’s eyes on him, Heck must find the killer before he executes more victims.

Because this killer has a plan. And nothing will stop him completing it.

A heart-stopping and grisly thriller that will enthrall fans of Stuart MacBride and Katia Lief.

(https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17926971-sacrifice)

Stalkers – DS Heckenburg #1 by Paul Finch

Audio Edition Narrated by Paul Thornley

REVIEW

I first read this book in June 2013 and was hooked from start to finish.

The series is based around the Serial Crime Unit in London and in particularly DS Mark ‘Heck’ Heckenburg. Heck lives for his job, or rather his job is his life.  Working on a series of missing women cases, Heck finds himself teaming up with the sister of one of the missing women, but what they uncover is worse than either of them could image.

There are some great twists as the story evolves and you get a real sense of the characters and their feelings as it is told from multiple points of view. One thing I really liked about this book was that no one was safe, they might be a small part character or a main character, and you won’t always see it coming.  Word of advice – don’t get attached to a character because you just never know!

With unexpected turns throughout the story is exciting and action-packed with some heart-stopping moments.  The author does not hold back on the gruesome moments which are told in full graphic detail so if you are a bit squeamish you have been warned.

I decided to get this on audio and I’ll be honest that it took a while to associate the narrators impression of the characters voices with those I previously had in my head. The female characters where the worst to get accustomed to but I did struggle with Heck as well, I think it was because I had him a bit deeper and I can’t do a Manchester accent in my head.   By the end though, Heck sounded as Heck should and I was so caught up in the story that the change in voices just flowed.  I am pleased to see that the rest of the series is narrated by Paul Thornley as well.  I have read the first five in the series and am looking forward to listening to them now.

Synopsis

Time’s up. You’re Next.

“All he had to do was name the woman he wanted. It was that easy. They would do all the hard work.”

Detective Sergeant Mark ‘Heck’ Heckenberg is investigating the disappearance of 38 different women. Each one was happy and successful until they vanished without a trace.

Desperate to find her missing sister, Lauren Wraxford seeks out Heck’s help. Together they enter a seedy underworld of gangsters and organised crime.

But when they hear rumours about the so-called ‘Nice Guys Club’ they hit a brick wall. They’re the gang that no one will talk about. Because the Nice Guys can arrange anything you want. Provided you pay the price…

(https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17268840-stalkers)

Behind Closed Doors by B.A. Paris

Everyone knows a couple like Jack and Grace: he has looks and wealth, she has charm and elegance. You’d like to get to know Grace better. But it’s difficult, because you realize Jack and Grace are never apart. Some might call this true love.

Picture this: a dinner party at their perfect home, the conversation and wine flowing. They appear to be in their element while entertaining. And Grace’s friends are eager to reciprocate with lunch the following week. Grace wants to go, but knows she never will. Her friends call—so why doesn’t Grace ever answer the phone? And how can she cook such elaborate meals but remain so slim?

And why are there bars on one of the bedroom windows?

The perfect marriage? Or the perfect lie?

(https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29437949-behind-closed-doors)

REVIEW

A chilling tale that will send ice through your veins.

If a man ever appears to be too good to be true then the chances are he probably is.  There is, however, a difference between not perfect and completely psychotic!

This is the first book I have read by B. A. Paris and I was really impressed.  The suspense is prevalent from the beginning and increases as the story progresses.  I liked the way the story switched from past to present until the two caught up with each other.  It kept up the intrigue and had me wondering what would happen next. There were some heart-thumping moments for Grace and I will admit that I had some of Jack’s plots guessed before they were revealed – it is at these times when I am telling the character (Grace in this case) to not be so stupid. They never seem to listen though.

Jack Angel is handsome, charming and wealthy and when he meets Grace he knows he has found the one.  Grace is sweet, caring and financially stable. She is loving towards her younger sister, who has Down Syndrome, and intends to look after her when their parents are unable – more like unwilling – too. Poor Grace is lured in by Jack’s enigmatic personality and charisma but when he shows his true nature she will do anything to protect those she loves.

An exciting, edge-of-the-seat book that makes me glad that I am not looking for a new husband!