My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Time taken to read - on and off over 3 days
Pages - 344
Publisher - Killer Reads
Blurb from Goodreads
Ex-priest DI Frank Farrell has returned to his roots in Dumfries, only to be landed with a disturbing murder case. Even worse, Farrell knows the victim: Father Boyd, the man who forced him out of the priesthood eighteen years earlier.
With no leads, Farrell must delve into the old priest’s past, one that is inexorably linked with his own. But his attention is diverted when a pair of twin boys go missing. The Dumfries police force recover one in an abandoned church, unharmed. But where is his brother?
As Farrell investigates the two cases, he can’t help but feel targeted. Is someone playing a sinister game, or is he seeing patterns that don’t exist? Either way, it’s a game Farrell needs to win before he loses his grip on his sanity, or someone else turns up dead.
A priest is murdered, D.I. Frank Farrell is named as the officer in charge of the case. Farrell is not just a police officer, he was a priest and in the same community as the the priest who has been killed. Farrell has links to the old priest, a connection that he doesn't think is relevant and doesn't want to dredge up his past. As the case unfolds, Farrell is forced to look upon his own past, why he had to leave the priesthood and why his mother no longer speaks to him.
You would never know this is a debut novel, it is well written and has strong police procedural themes. Farrell ends up investigating two cases, the murder of the priest and the disappearance of twin boys. Things start to seem personal and Farrell is battling his own demons whilst trying to focus on the cases and keep on top of the inner team issues.
A great book that looks at many themes, battling inner demons, secrets, mental health, relationships, police procedures and a deranged killer. The chapters are short which I love in a book, makes it easier for dipping in and out of especially if you are busy & working in between. You know early on something is a foot and Baldwin keeps you gripped page after page desperate to know what it is, or maybe that is just me because I am a nosey reader. Relatively fast paced, you have a murder in the first chapters and the investigation and introduction to the team goes from there. A fantastic and gripping debut, I will certainly be on the watch for more from this author and hope this is just the beginning of Farrell's story, 4/5 for me this time.