Book reviews: Never Mind 'Summer Loving', how's about some 'Summer Killing reads instead?
Getting Ready for your summer holidays? Bags packed? Books in suitcase? Kindle in hand luggage?.. then your nearly set... just time to have a quick peruse of The Crime Warp's Killer Summer Reads. Here are just a few recommendations to while away boring car, train or plane journeys, to occupy your grey matter whilst relaxing at the pool or on the beach or as an aid to restful sleep after a hectic day sightseeing, entertaining the kids or shopping.
After the Fire by Jane Casey
DC Maeve Kerrigan is back accompanied by her annoying, but sound boss DI Josh Derwent. A fire in a block of social housing flats throws up a three dead bodies, some injuries and a multi faceted investigation into which of the victims was the target of the possible arsonist. As well as the ongoing investigation Kerrigan's nemesis Chris Swain is still infiltrating her life, threatening her and stalking her. As his attention escalates Kerrigan knows she must have a final showdown with him to oust him from her life. Great characterisation, fast paced and compelling.
Available on Amazon kindle £7.99 HB £12.91 PB £7.99
The Jump by Doug Johnstone
Set in south Queensferry in Scotland where the Forth Rad and Rail bridges loom over the dark waters of the Firth of Forth. After her son's suicide by jumping form the Forth road bridge Ellie spends her time haunting the walkways under the bridges, swimming in the forth and studying her son's place of death. Then one day she see's teen Sam McKenna poised to jump and i desperation Ellie manages to talk him down. Is this her second chance? Desperate for redemption Ellie becomes embroiled in Sam's troubled life in this emotionally fraught and poignantly hopeful story of grief, frailty and empathy. the jump leaves you with a tingling sensation in your spine that reminds you of the fragility of our lives and that any of us are only a hairs breadth away from tragedy and its' unexpected consequences. Insightful and unsettling!
Available in ebook for £3.47 and PB £12.99
The Domino Killer by Neil White
Set in Manchester,brothers Sam and Joe Parker are once again united to solve a series of murders. This time though the stakes are much higher as Joe (the criminal lawyer, sure he can identify his sister's killer puts himself at risk, whilst Sam (the police officer) is determined to find the link between two seemingly dissimilar murders, a random theft from a police storage facility and the subsequent torching of the car. Sneakily twisty, the Domino Killer is a compulsive read with plenty of action and loads of Northern heart!
Available on Amazon Kindle £9.99 and HB £19.99
Blood Salt Water by Denise Mina
When Roxanna Fuentecilla (a person of interest to the Police for a possible seven million pound scam disappears from her Glasgow home Detective Alex Morrow sets out to find her. Grounded in pre referendum Scotland, Blood Salt Water captures the ferocity of both campaigns against the more prosaic back drop of criminal activity. It is chock full of troubled souls, tortured minds and total arses that gets right into the underbelly of Scottish crime. Mina's ability to create entire communities through her range of characters is enviable. Blood Salt Water bleeds into your soul and holds you hostage in a series of emotional, surprising and edgy twists that explore the nuances that make up a community.
Available in kindle for £9.99 and HB £11.99
Shutter Man by Richard Montanari
The Shutter Man begins in The Devil's Pocket, Philly in the 70's when Detective Kevin Byrne was a child and the Farren's rule the roost in a terrifying way. Tragedy combined with poverty and gangster's with no boundaries leads to a tale that finds it's ending today. Initially I found this a slower read than previous Montanari books, this slow burner was well worth the wait. Billy Farren is one of those characters that pulls you in different directions. Afflicted after a childhood accident with the debilitating inability to retain facial identity Billy, despite his murderous intentions pulls at your heartstrings as he struggles with his families heritage and his personal issues, whilst disgusting you at his amoral actions. A chilling expose of life in the Philly ghettos and the hold one family holds over an entire community. Skillfully woven with a couple of surprising twists at the end and as ever with Montanari the relationship between Balzano and Byrne is compelling. A great summer read!
Available on kindle for £13.99 and HB £16.58