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Ratings and Book Reviews ()

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4.6 out of 5
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  • One of your must reads of 2020

    Really big twist no one will ever see coming ends The Curator on a high. The final showdown setting with The Curator raises this book to the next level. Poe and Tilly a team you will have followed from previous stories (well worth catching up on). Tilly with her mathematical brain and Poe who can fit the jigsaw pieces together even when the case runs into a dead end. This will be one of your must reads of 2020 then check out the wonderful Cumbria setting. I was given an ARC of this book by Netgalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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  • Loved it

    Wow ... just wow!! Why have I not read any of this series before? Where have I been living to have missed them? I must have been walking around with my eyes closed given this is the 3rd instalment!! I have probably missed the development of the main characters and their backstories but it certainly didn't take anything away from my enjoyment of this book so can safely say it can be read as a standalone. I won't go into the plot as it's all in the blurb but what I will say is that despite it being complex, the writing is such that it isn't a hard read and although it's a dark and gritty story, the sarcasm and wit lightens it somewhat especially as it feels natural and not forced. The pace is perfect and the setting is spot on ... not that I'm biased or anything given that I live in Cumbria. The characters are believable and just brilliant. Washington is a breath of fresh air, he is a bit grumpy but likeable nonetheless and someone you definitely want to be on your side. I absolutely adore Tilly - I need her in my life and would love her to spend just one day in my office - oh the carnage! I will never eat a bar nut again!! Well you've probably already guessed that I enjoyed this book but just in case I haven't been clear ... it is absolutely brilliant and is one of those books that you tell people to read because it's that good. My thanks must go to Little, Brown Book Group and NetGalley for my copy in return for an honest review. I am so grateful I was one of the chosen ones and I await the next instalment with impatience.

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  • Phenomenally Good!

    A phenomenally good read! I have been eagerly anticipating the release of The Curator by M.W. Craven and I fully expected it to be equally as good as his first two books in this incredibly magnificent series, The Puppet Show and Black Summer. I am delighted to be able to say that it was well worth the wait, as it was an absolute masterpiece! The plot-line for this novel, so cleverly devised by M.W. Craven was in another league. I was fascinated as to how this amazing author could have come up with yet another ingenious and inventive story-line as this crime-thriller possesses. The characterisation is truly wonderful, especially that of the enigmatic Detective Sergeant Washington Poe. All of the characters have their quirks and personality traits but Poe really fascinates me to the point where I am rather infatuated with him. I love all of his idiosyncrasies and even his eating habits appeal to me. Tilly Bradshaw is also a stand out character for me, with her brilliant technological prowess and lack of social skills. I felt totally immersed in this story and would have loved to have enjoyed a drink or two with these detectives in Poe’s local - the Shap Wells Hotel. The setting, Cumbria in England’s North-West was wonderfully portrayed by M.W. Craven and this also contributed heavily towards my total absorption of the story, having visited the area on many occasions. M.W. Craven writes in such an absorbing manner that I was lured in immediately and the whole story was believable and highly addictive. The pacing was perfect and there was always something happening - the next lead to chase up, some more fact-finding or another place to visit. Craven had the tone exactly right, a sly, wicked sense of humour and solid knowledge of procedure as well as the geographical area, all added up to a really enjoyable novel. I am totally in awe of this clever author who for me is a master of his craft. I am already excited about the fourth book in the Washington Poe series, Dead Ground, which will be beckoning to be read. If you have yet to acquaint yourself with Poe and Tilly, I encourage you to do so post-haste, as you are massively missing out! I received a complimentary copy of this novel from Little, Brown Book Group UK/ Constable via NetGalley at my request. This review is my own unbiased opinion.

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  • A tremendous book

    The third book in M.W. Craven’s Washington Poe series opens with brutal scenes of a woman tied down, barely conscious. She then has two of her fingers chopped off, one ante-mortem and one post-mortem. If this scene is too much for you then you might want to give the rest of the book a miss. If like me you love a good brutal thriller, keep reading. It’s Christmas in Cumbria and Washington Poe and the team are called into the police station, there is a murderer on the loose. Three sets of pairs of fingers have been found in different locations all with a note stating #BSC6. Their identities are discovered but with only one body found and different methods of amputation used on each pair of fingers, National Crime Agency’s Washington Poe and Analyst Tilly Bradshaw have their work cut out, especially as the facts don’t seem to follow the usual serial killer script. The pair are just starting to put small pieces together when Poe receives a phone call from a disgraced FBI agent Melody Lee who informs him he is dealing with someone like never before. The person they are looking for is The Curator. Poe needs to understand that no matter how many steps forward he takes The Curator will always be two steps ahead and he needs to tread carefully. The Curator is one of the best thrillers I have ever read and in my opinion the best yet in the Washington Poe series. It is gripping, suspenseful, and certainly plays with your mind. It makes you think and there is most certainly a psychological element running the whole way through. I love the way Poe and Tilly work together. Their banter is pure genius and realistic too. It is with this banter that you can find some light relief from this wicked case that takes Poe to new depths. Put it this way you should know you are up against something sinister when a senior pathologist is warning you to be careful and not be a hero. Once I started reading this book I didn’t want to put it down. The pace was spot on, the chapters short and snappy and the mind games just perfect. I also love the location, as it is easy to visualise having been to Cumbria many times. The book works as a standalone, so if you haven’t read the first two, no worries, though I will always suggest reading the first two first as it is best to begin a series at the start and The Puppet Show and Black Summer are both amazing books, so it would be foolish not to. Overall, this is a tremendous book with a flawless plot that had me analysing every page. It is scary to believe that people like The Curator exist in the real world too. I’m off to lock all the doors and windows!!

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