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Ratings and Book Reviews ()

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  • The Crème de la Crème of Police Procedurals!

    Having recently heard about the first in this series, Missing, Presumed, I went ahead and read it, considering it a five star read. Although I had not got around to grabbing myself a copy of book two, Persons Unknown, nevertheless I was delighted to lay my hands on this one, Remain Silent. In this atmospheric police procedural, DI Manon Bradshaw finds herself on a high pressured, heavily demanding case. Newly married Manon is now working 3 days per week as she tries to divide her time between Fly, her teenage adopted son, her two-year-old toddler, Teddy, and her husband Mark. Focusing on cold cases, she should be finding her work life balance a breeze, but she discovers this isn't so as she becomes the Senior Investigating Officer of an ambiguous investigation. Out for a walk with Teddy one day, she finds a man hanging in a tree with a strange note left at the scene that hints his death could be murder rather than suicide. The victim is a Lithuanian migrant, Lukas Balsys. Susie Steiner excels at authentic, complex, psychological character development and plotting whilst her writing is sublime. Delivered from different perspectives, this is a dark, tense, character driven police procedural with a gripping narrative, and the intricate plot kept me hooked. Manon is brilliant at her job as she tries to attain that illusive home/work balance. She comes across as real and loyal, with all the guilt feelings and stresses of a working mother. Though she can be contradictory, she is always entertaining and never bland. As a lead character I think she’s the crème de la crème and I loved the banter, friendship and loyalty between her and DS Davy Walker. The rest of the team are also excellently crafted even Glenda McBlameGame. Manon's witty repartee and humour made the horrors of the plight of the migrant workers just about bearable as I accompanied her through the darkest of narratives, as well as having to handle the incompetent Tired Nigel. This is superior British crime fiction, and if you haven't read any of the series, you are doubtlessly missing out. Overall, this is a cracking, thoroughly satisfying read and if you prefer your crime fiction with a deeper side to it then Remain Silent is for you. I received a complimentary copy of this novel at my request from The Borough Press via NetGalley and this review is my unbiased opinion.

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  • An Excellent Crime Thriller - with Humour!

    A series I've heard so much about that when I spotted this one I was determined to read it! DI Manon Bradshaw, despite working reduced hours, finds the case of the latest body found hanging from a tree lands on her desk. With a new Chief in the station, it's all hands on deck to find out if this is suicide or murder. It's fairly obvious that some of those questioned know things they're not telling - but why? And can Manon and her team get to the bottom of things before more bodies are discovered? What a fantastic book! There is a great mix of professional and personal lives in this and some bursts of humour along the way - all entirely in keeping with the story. Having assured my husband he would get an undisturbed night's sleep due to my reading a crime thriller, the first scene I read after lights out involved a young officer from Glasgow and I couldn't prevent a burst of laughter! This is an excellent crime novel, targeting current concerns within the UK and none of it whitewashed. I really need to try and find time to read the first two books as I feel I'm missing out if I don't. Full of well-crafted characters and a gripping story line, this had everything I could possibly want - crime investigation, colleagues, friends, family and the unexpected giggles at the most inopportune moments. All well-written and one I'm happy to recommend. 4.5*.

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