Faceless by Rob Ashman
13th June 2019. 3 stars.
This is the first book by Rob Ashman I’ve read. I found it easy to read and follow, with a good pace, interesting characters and an original plot that tied up all the loose ends. Once things became personal between detective and killer, the tension and anticipation moved up a notch.
DI Roz Kray is a gutsy no-nonsense character, who doesn’t suffer fools and stops at nothing to get the job done. Like most fictional cops these days, she starts the book following several traumas, though I have to say these do play a part in solving the murders and identifying the killer. She also seems to be in a constant battle with her superiors, whom she has no respect for, referring to them in quite derogatory language at times.
The killer is a twisted individual with a unique style and method. His past, particularly his childhood, was sympathetically portrayed to reveal how he became the killer he is. And like many fictional serial killers today, he seems to have plenty of time and money to meticulously plan and execute the murders, while holding down the day job.
The story alternated between these two characters, with the killer taunting the police, leaving them several paces behind until Roz Kray joins the dots and homes in on the truth. This approach helped to maintain the suspense and keep me reading.
Events in the climax went a step too far for me. This took the edge off my overall enjoyment of the story and reminded me of other areas of the book where I think a little restraint would have produced a more believable story.
Roz Kray’s constant use of bad language seemed unnecessary. I have no problem with swearing, but characters don’t need to swear all the time to appear tough. The author had already done an excellent job in showing how tough and determined she was. In the end the bad language became distracting. The way the women were murdered also seemed far-fetched and difficult to believe, reducing any impact or shock the author may have wanted.
I think a little restraint would have given me a more believable and enjoyable read.
After surviving a vicious knife attack, which left her husband dead, DI Rosalind Kray returns to work and is handed a serial killer investigation.
This killer is different, he doesn’t just want to take the lives of his victims, he wants to obliterate their very existence. The murders appear random but the killer selects his quarry with meticulous care.
While fighting her superiors Kray must conquer her own demons, which are tearing her apart.
Kray has the ability to think like a killer and her skills lead to a series of horrifying revelations that turn the case on its head. She believes she is getting close, then her world comes crashing down with devastating consequences.
Will Kray find the murderer and escape with her own life intact?
The truth is closer than she could have ever imagined…