Final three September Suspense reviews…
By Lynda La Plante
Simon and Schuster RRP $32.99
With her professional conduct under scrutiny Detective Inspector Anna Travis faces her toughest challenge yet as she investigates the murder of actress Amanda Delany.
A motorway service station on the M1: dimly lit, run down, poorly supervised, flickering lights, dark corners; a favourite stopover for long-distance lorry drivers on their way up north from London. Behind it, a body is found in a ditch, that of a girl barely out of her teens. She appears to have no family, no friends, no connections anywhere. Other girls have gone missing in the vicinity and no one has stepped forward to claim them. DI Anna Travis is brought onto the team of investigators by DCS James Langton, who already suspects that this recent case could be linked to two unsolved murders.
As more evidence is discovered the team realise that they are contending with a triple murder investigation — and no suspect. Her blood runs cold when she receives a letter from a lifer — someone she was responsible for arresting in the past — who writes to her from prison, asking her to visit him urgently. He makes contact from prison because he insists he can track down their killer, but will only talk to Anna herself. Does he really have an insight into another killer’s mind, or is he merely intent on getting into hers? For he claims he knows who the killer is…
By Lisa Unger
Random House RRP $32.95
Everybody knows everybody in The Hollows, a quaint, charming town outside of New York City. It’s a place where neighbours keep an eye on one another’s kids, where people say hello in the local supermarket, and where high school cliques and antics are never quite forgotten. As a child, Maggie found living under the microscope of small-town life stifling. But as a wife and mother, she has happily returned to The Hollows’s insular embrace. As a psychologist, her knowledge of family histories provides powerful insights into her patients’ lives. So when the girlfriend of her teenage son, Rick, disappears, Maggie’s intuitive gift proves useful to the case—and also dangerous.
Eerie parallels soon emerge between Charlene’s disappearance and the abduction of another local girl that shook the community years ago when Maggie was a teenager. The investigation has her husband, Jones, the lead detective on the case, acting strangely. Rick, already a brooding teenager, becomes even more withdrawn. In a town where the past is always present, nobody is above suspicion, not even a son in the eyes of his father.
“I know how a moment can spiral out of control,” Jones says to a shocked Maggie as he searches Rick’s room for incriminating evidence. “How the consequences of one careless action can cost you everything.”
As she tries to reassure him that Rick embodies his father in all of the important ways, Maggie realizes this might be exactly what Jones fears most. Determined to uncover the truth, Maggie pursues her own leads into Charlene’s disappearance and exposes a long-buried town secret—one that could destroy everything she holds dear. This thrilling novel about one community’s intricate yet fragile bonds will leave readers asking, How well do I know the people I love? and how far would I go to protect them?
By Karin Fossum
Harvill Secker RRP $32.95
An outstanding psychological crime novel from Karin Fossum: when a body surfaces in a lake Inspector Sejer must uncover a dark secret of betrayal and paranoia.
Early one September three friends spend the weekend at a remote cabin by Dead Water Lake. With only a pale moon to light their way, they row across the water in the middle of the night. But only two of them return, and they make a pact not to call for help until the following morning. Inspector Sejer leads the investigation when the body is discovered. He is troubled by the apparent suicide and has an overwhelming sense that the surviving pair has something to hide. Weeks pass without further clues, and then in a nearby lake the body of a teenage boy floats to the surface.
“Bad Intentions”is the seventh novel by Karin Fossum featuring Inspector Sejer. Her books are not what you would call conventional crime thriller or dramatic police tales, as from early on in the novel the reader is aware of who the perpetrators of the crime are. Fossums books, as usual, are more concerned with entering the mind of the criminal and the victim, and with morality rather than the gruesome facts of how the murder occurred.
`The seventh Inspector Sejer novel from Norway’s leading female crime writer is, like its predecessors, a gem.’ UK Guardian.
Karin Fossum made her literary debut in Norway in 1974 and her Inspector Sejer series has been published in 26 countries.
That’s all folks! Hope you enjoyed our Suspenseful September and have found some new crime writers to follow and keep you entertained when you feel like something a little dark and mysterious to read. Enjoy!