An Unfamiliar Murder by Jane Isaac

An Unfamiliar Murder by Jane Isaac

11th January 2021.

Imagine coming home after a hard day at work and finding the body of a stranger, murdered in your home. You wouldn’t think it could get much worse – until the police take you in for questioning as a suspect.

While it soon becomes clear that Anna’s not the killer, she’s still left with the question of why a stranger was murdered in her home. And as she starts to ask questions, it soon becomes clear that there are family secrets blocking her road to the truth.

At the same time, DI Helen Lavery, in charge of her first murder enquiry, has to make sense of the murder. A second death increases the pressure and the pace picks up, focusing on the investigation more as the detectives make a breakthrough.

But will they be in time?

I enjoy trying new authors and series, getting to know new characters and settings. You can never be sure what you’re going to get and the first quarter of this story took its time to get going with a lot of focus on the emotional state of Anna and Helen Lavery. But once the investigation kicked into gear, the story picked up and became an exciting and intriguing hunt for the killer. The characters revealed themselves through their actions and relationships and the secrets were peeled away, layer by layer.

This is a good first novel to a series with an intriguing plot, plenty of drama and tension, and some engaging characters that lay a sound foundation for future novels.


Arriving home from a routine day at work, Anna Cottrell has no idea that her life is about to change forever. But discovering the stabbed body of a stranger in her flat, then becoming prime suspect in a murder enquiry is only the beginning. Her persistent claims of innocence start to crumble when new evidence links her irrevocably with the victim…

Leading her first murder enquiry, DCI Helen Lavery unravels a trail of deception, family secrets and betrayal. When people close to the Cottrell family start to disappear, Lavery is forced into a race against time. Can she catch the killer before he executes his ultimate victim?

An Unfamiliar Murder by Jane Isaac

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