My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Time taken to read - 3 days
Publisher - Little Brown Book Group
Pages - 416
Blurb from Goodreads
The terrifying new thriller in the Brennan and Esposito series - are you brave enough to read it?
When three men are found hanged in locations around Colchester, Detective Inspector Phil Brennan gets the shock of his life. Not only are the victims dressed to look like him, but each carries a defaced tarot card in the pocket of their identical leather jackets, scrawled across with one name: Phil Brennan.
The bodies aren't found in random locations - they're all in places where DI Brennan has caught a murderer. Someone is sending him a message. And he thinks he knows who it is...
Shocking and thrilling, in this dramatic new Tania Carver thriller DI Phil Brennan and his wife, psychologist Marina Esposito, have their lives turned upside down as the past comes back to haunt their present with terrifying consequences.
Firsty, if you haven't read the previous books in the series I think you can get away with picking this one up. There are mentions to things that have happened in previous books and this series I have read out of order and just as I find them. DI Phil Brennan and his wife Marina Esposito (psychologist) have been through so much already, they are cautious and do keep on top of personal safety. When three male victims are found, all in places Brennan has connections to it is clear someone is trying to tell him something. A high profile kidnap puts everyone on edge and questioning everything they know and their team. The killer is fearless, clever and has one mission on her mind, no one and nothing will get in the way and Phil and Marina find themselves facing their greatest threat yet.
We open in italics, with a little girl and an event that will change her life forever, anytime we visit her the italics highlights the switch so we can follow the story with ease. There are many themes in this book, murder, psychological torture, rape, abuse, pedophilia, prostitution, police teamwork, grief and loss, to name but a few. Certainly not for the faint hearted or easily offended, some of the scenes are really tough to read even for the hardest fans of dark gritty crime.
The chapters are short making it easy for dipping in and out, the subject matter is horrific in parts and the pace finds the reader struggling to put it down. I have read Carver before and will read him again, I just may need a few fluffy reads inbetween to draw some balance again. Carver creates some really deprived criminals that disgusts you but keeps you hooked to discover just what creates such monsters. 4/5 for me this time, as I said I have read him before and I would read him again but warn readers to pick this one up with caution.