13th November 2020.
This is the third book in the DI Bliss series which begins with the particularly sadistic killing of an RAF officer. The racial overtones of the murder lead to local tensions and the involvement of the security services, MI5 and MI6, which bring more complications.
Then a woman from Bliss’s past seeks his help with the suspicious death of her husband. Despite reservations, Bliss agrees to take a closer look at the case.
The story covers a lot of ground, including some past cases and emotional issues, creating a complex narrative that drags Bliss and his team down a few dead ends before he begins to make sense of what’s going on.
While I enjoyed following the twists, turns and different strands, at times I wasn’t always sure who some of the many characters were, especially if any of them dipped out of the story for a few chapters. I also felt a little less of the emotional complications and backstory would have helped my focus.
But these are minor quibbles in what is a skilfully crafted, intense and fascinating police procedural with some dark moments, lightened with humorous touches. It covers a broad canvas without losing the detailed character relationships that underpin all good story telling. Original and well-executed, this is a novel for anyone who likes a big, meaty plot, populated by believable and interesting characters to provide several layers of interest.
While you can read it as a standalone, I’d recommend starting at the beginning of the series to get the maximum pleasure. I’m already looking forward to reading the fourth book in the series.
When a torched body is found in a country lane, DI Bliss and Chandler are called in to investigate.
The detectives are drawn towards recent missing person reports and believe their victim will prove to be one of them. Bliss thinks he knows which, and fears the outcome if he is proven right.
Soon the body is identified, and Bliss and Chandler discover evidence suggesting this murder might be a terrorist attack.
Meanwhile, someone from Bliss’s past needs his help, and soon he is juggling his personal life with the demanding case. To make matters more complicated, MI5 and the Counter-Terrorist Unit are called in to help solve the case. But are they on the right track?
Bliss and Chandler soon find themselves in a race against time, and this might just be their most challenging case yet…