Author: Rob Sinclair
Published: September 2019 by Canelo Hera
Category: Crime, Thriller, Police Procedural, Book Review
He’s your attacker.
He’s a murderer.
He’s your twin.
When DI Dani Stephens returns to work after an attack that almost ended her life, she’s quickly plunged into a horrific new case, as dead bodies are discovered on the streets of Birmingham.
But with no link between the victims, Dani has to get inside the killer’s mind – so turns to the murderer she knows best. Her own twin brother…
After two years recovering from a vicious attack by her twin brother that almost killed her and left with a traumatic brain injury and visible scars, DI Dani Stephens has returned to work. It has been a long, hard road to to reach this point and, much as she wants to get back to some sort of normality, she’s feeling anxious. The injury has changed her, she isn’t the same person she used to be.
Spread throughout the story are extracts from her diary, charting Dani’s rehabilitation and fight to regain her physical and emotional health. Although she has made great progress there are long term consequences, and she still sometimes needs a cocktail of drugs to function normally. She desperately wants to prove she’s up to the job, but is unsure of herself and her ability to cope.
On her first day back Dani is assigned to a murder investigation. An unidentified woman had been found stabbed to death, also with surface wounds which suggested she’d been bound and held prisoner.
’She’d been tied up,’ Dani said. A statement. She’s already known about those marks which were the key reason why she’d asked for a pathologist in the first place. She held back the rising nausea at the thought of the poor woman’s ordeal.
While trying to identify the victim, Dani realises how many young women have disappeared and are still unaccounted for. She suspects a serial killer but there are no obvious links, and no-one else of the same mind. As a last resort, Dani visits her brother to see if she could gain any insight into the mind of a killer. She desperately needs a breakthrough in the case.
The course of the investigation brings Dani into contact with Professor Steven Grant, a lecturer in Criminology who himself was abducted and tortured by a serial killer many years ago. This terrible experience resulted in him writing a book which became a best seller.
The story follows on from Dark Fragments but is easily read as a stand alone. The narrative is paced steadily, with a lot of emphasis on Dani’s traumatic previous two years and her interactions with old and new colleagues, which does take away a little from the investigation itself but at the same time adds a new dimension. There’s still a well written police procedural element with a well crafted and dark plot, some surprise twists and a protagonist you can root for. A promising start to a new series.
I chose to read and review The Essence of Evil based on an advance reader copy of the book kindly supplied by the author/publisher via NetGalley.
About the Author
Rob is the author of the critically acclaimed and bestselling Enemy series and James Ryker series of espionage thrillers. He worked for nearly 13 years for a global accounting firm after graduating from The University of Nottingham in 2002, specialising in forensic fraud investigations at both national and international levels. Rob now writes full time. Originally from the North East of England, Rob has lived and worked in a number of fast paced cities, including New York, and is now settled in the West Midlands with his wife and young sons.
Author: LJ Ross
Performed by Hugh Dancy
Released: October 2019 by Whole Story Audiobooks
Category: Contemporary, Murder, Mystery, Audiobook, Book Review
After an elite criminal profiling unit is shut down amid a storm of scandal and mismanagement, only one person emerges unscathed. Forensic psychiatrist Doctor Alexander Gregory has a reputation for being able to step inside the darkest minds to uncover whatever secrets lie hidden there, and soon enough he finds himself drawn into the murky world of murder investigation.
Forensic psychologist Dr Alexander Gregory’s assistance has been requested, in his capacity as a profiler, from the mayor of Ballyfinny, County Mayo.
Author: Ambrose Parry
Published: August 2018 by Canongate Books
Category: Historical Fiction, Crime, Medical, Mystery, Book Review
Edinburgh, 1847. Will Raven is a medical student, apprenticing for the brilliant and renowned Dr Simpson. Sarah Fisher is Simpson’s housemaid, and has all of Raven’s intelligence but none of his privileges.
As bodies begin to appear across the Old Town, Raven and Sarah find themselves propelled headlong into the darkest shadows of Edinburgh’s underworld. And if either of them are to make it out alive, they will have to work together to find out who’s responsible for the gruesome deaths.
The Way Of All Flesh is a historical crime fiction set in 19th century Edinburgh. Will Raven was about to embark on an apprenticeship with distinguished obstetrician, Professor James Young Simpson, a real historical figure who began introducing the use of ether for difficulties in childbirth, and later discovered the anaesthetic qualities of chloroform.
Author: Chad Zunker
Published: November 2019 by Thomas & Mercer
Category: Crime, Legal, Thriller, Book Review
An ambitious Stanford graduate, David Adams has begun a fast-track career at Austin’s most prestigious law firm. It’s a personal victory for the rising superstar—a satisfying reversal from his impoverished and despairing childhood. Now he has the life he’s always wanted: an extravagant salary, a high-rise condo, a luxury SUV, and no limit to how far he can go in the eyes of the top partners.
This is a case of if it looks too good to be true, it probably is.
Author: Owen Mullen
Published: October 2019 by Bloodhound Books
Category: Domestic Noir, Psychological, Thriller, Suspense, Book Review
It’s been five years since Mackenzie Darroch was abducted and held captive in a derelict house.
She thought she’d found her way out of the darkness. She was wrong.
When she witnesses a car crash and saves the driver’s life, it sets in motion a chain of events that will alter both their futures.
Owen Mullen has again tackled important and relevant issues with insight and realism. The story, split into three parts comes from several perspectives, centring around Mackenzie Darroch and the refuge she runs for women who have suffered mental and physical abuse at the hands of men.
Author: Ann Cleeves
Published: September 2019 by Macmillan
Category: Police Procedural, Crime, Murder, Mystery, Book Review
In North Devon, where two rivers converge and run into the sea, Detective Matthew Venn stands outside the church as his father’s funeral takes place. Once loved and cherished, the day Matthew left the strict evangelical community he grew up in, he lost his family too.
Set in North Devon, where the rivers Taw and Torridge meet before joining the sea, we’re introduced to Detective Inspector Matthew Venn who is on the periphery of the mourners at his father’s funeral. Matthew grew up in the area and has recently moved back to Barnstaple from Bristol, where he has been living and working.
Author: JD Robb
Performed by Susan Ericksen
Released: September 2019 by Hachette Audio UK
Category: Police Procedural, Audiobook, Review
When a family man is tortured, killed and left in front of his family home for all the world to see, Eve Dallas knows she is on the hunt for a particularly dangerous killer.
But death uncovers secrets and the killer leaves a note revealing the victim to be far from the family man he appears. As Eve scrambles to find out what she can to link victim and killer, another body is found. Another man with a dark and murky past.