Author: M.J. Arlidge
Published: September 11, 2014 by Penguin Books (UK)
Genre: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense
Paperback: 424 pages
My Rating: 4 stars
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This is the second book in the Detective Helen Grace series. It is a classic cop vs. serial killer story and this one starts with the discovery of a man’s body in a derelict house. He has been brutally murdered, and his heart has been removed and sent to his widow in a cardboard box. A few days later, another man’s body is found, this time the heart being sent to the victim’s place of business. Both men have a habit of using prostitutes, and it doesn’t take Grace long to realize she has a vicious serial killer on her hands.
Back at the police station, Detective Grace has to deal with the new Detective Superintendent Ceri Harwood, who replaced Michael Whittaker from book one. The second book delves even deeper into the personal lives of the lead detectives D.C. Charlie Brooks and DS Tony Bridges who cares for his invalid wife after a stroke. We also come to understand more of Helen Grace, and her push and pull of not wanting to get too close to people, but longing to have a personal connection with someone.
Most chapters are only a few pages long, so you can stop whenever you want… or read just one more chapter… then just one more… it is rather addictive! I like the short chapters and the varying view points. Learning a little about the various detective’s back stories adds an additional dimension to the plot. You also get some chapters from the view point of the killer and the view point of the wives left behind. I loved the chapters jumping around and all the different perspectives. This is another great escapist read from M. J. Arlidge. The author combines breakneck speed suspense with a straight forward plot to produce an enjoyable binge-worthy read. There’s nothing deep here – just pure entertainment if you like a dark, twisted suspenseful read.
If you haven’t read the first book in the series, Eeny Meeny, you can read my review here.