It’s hard to believe that it was less than a year ago that I came across Helen Fields’ first book, Perfect Remains, at the library AND that I only picked it up because of the cover.
I am so pleased that I did because I thought it was a great book, and now – three books in – I can’t imagine my reading life without detectives Luc Callanach and Ava Turner, the two central characters in this crime series.
Luc is half-Scottish, half-French and trying to rebuild his life after it fell apart a few years previously. It’s why he moved to Scotland, where he is slowly starting to fit in with his team and get over the events of the past. Ava is a woman who was born with a silver spoon in her mouth but hasn’t let that stop her climb the ranks of the police and put herself in the line of fire more than once.They make an interesting, combative, pair – especially now Ava has been promoted and is Luc’s boss. It’s a fine line that she keeps falling off – unsure how she can be his friend at the same time as telling him what to do on the job and keeping secrets about an investigation from him.
Ava’s investigation involves her old boss, who recently committed suicide – or seemed to – Ava can’t believe it’s true. It’s under the radar and dangerous. At the same time, Luc begins investigating the death of a young woman, a seemingly random accidental death, until it starts to seem more like murder and less like an accident. The problem is the killer, if there is one, isn’t making mistakes and no one knows how to catch him.
The two storylines run side-by-side in the book but don’t cross over unless you count the detectives investigating them. I like this – there were no sudden leaps of logic I needed to make when the author decided to link them together at the end. They were both interesting, and could easily have made a book in their own right. Having two though, definitely meant there was no lack of pace at any point, which was great for me.
I stayed up late, turning pages, and wondering what the killers plan was, his motivation. As with the other books, he is a serial killer but, here, I felt the plot was more subtle. It wasn’t as gory as the first two, which I have no problems with as I don’t like too much blood, but it was just as clever and well written.
You can probably tell from all this that this was a hit for me. There wasn’t anything I didn’t like and I couldn’t recommend it enough. I would say if you could, though, start at the beginning because there are elements of Luc and Ava’s story that probably won’t make sense otherwise.
About the book…
Unknown to DI Luc Callanach and the newly promoted DCI Ava Turner, a serial killer has Edinburgh firmly in his grip. The killer is taking his victims in the coldest, most calculating way possible – engineering slow and painful deaths by poison, with his victims entirely unaware of the drugs flooding their bloodstream until it’s too late.
But how do you catch a killer who hides in the shadows? A killer whose pleasure comes from watching pain from afar? Faced with their most difficult case yet, Callanach and Turner soon realise they face a seemingly impossible task…
Publication date: 25th January, 2018
Number of pages: 448
Genre: mystery, suspense, police procedural
Note: I received this book in return for a fair and honest review. All thoughts, feelings, and opinions are my own.