I very much enjoyed After That Night by Karin Slaughter which is the 11th in the Will Trent series. I must have missed one or two I think as I think I knew Will and Sara Linton were together but had forgotten how much I like their relationship and the way they complement each other.
Black Lies by Mercedes Mercier is the second in the series featuring psychologist Laura Fleming who works with inmates at Westmead prison. It kicks off two years after the events of White Noise and things seem to have settled down in Laura’s life after a history of pain killer addiction created problems with her ex-husband and daughter.
Dying to Know by Rae Cairns is the second book by the Australian author and I very much enjoyed her first, The Good Mother, despite it being about one of my less-favourite topics… of parenting-related angst and judgement.
In her latest novel she very deftly introduces an historical crime without belabouring it, which is something I very much appreciated. The backcover blurb made me wonder if there’d be a lot of back and forward in time (which I don’t dislike, but imagined might be drawn-out) when in reality Cairns cleanly and succinctly introduces the events of twelve years earlier and moves on to the present.
When I first started Seven Sisters by Katherine Kovacic I was worried it was going in an obvious direction but then realised it wasn’t just me drawing parallels between the women we meet here and the book / movie Strangers on a Train. Rather Kovacic – via her characters – makes the point that they’re drawing their inspiration from exactly that… crossed with Greek mythology’s seven sisters, The Pleiades.
The Whispering by Veronica Lando centres around a myth – ‘the whispering’ apparently luring children to their death off the boulders in Granite Creek’s rainforest in Far North Queensland.
I was slightly worried there’d be a supernatural theme to this book as it’s not a genre I enjoy, but – though there’s reference to ‘whispering’ – Queensland author Lando sets the events of this book (past and present) firmly in this earthly realm.
I’d heard a lot of good things about The Torrent by Dinuka McKenzie and now that I’ve read it, am happy it’s tagged on Goodreads as Detective Kate Miles #1 meaning there are more to come. Of course my finely honed deductive skills also noted the inclusion of a preview of book number two at the end of The Torrent, so….
McKenzie’s introduced us to an engaging lead in Kate and I liked the support cast we’d expect to see again – her husband, her work partner, her boss and her father. There’s a bit of backstory and baggage in relation to her father’s past but it doesn’t overwhelm the story unfolding here in any way which also includes a nice balance of the crime/s-at-hand and the usual personal stuff impacting on work lives – particularly that of cops’.
All She Wants by Kelli Hawkins is about a woman who wants a family… a woman who is desperate for a family. I mean ostensibly she wants a baby, but she really wants the whole kit and caboodle. A family. As someone who went through fertility treatment in my early 40s (as a single woman) I could relate to some of Lindsay’s obsessiveness and the daydreams of a long-expected child.
I could similarly relate to how much it smarted to see others with children, taking it for granted and seemingly rubbing it in my face – though of course they weren’t. The pill nonetheless was bitter.
I’d heard good things about The Good Mother by Rae Cairns, which I believe was previously self-published and shortlisted for the prestigious 2021 Ned Kelly Debut Crime Fiction Award.
I was a little worried however. I’m a bit ‘over’ books about motherhood in general… not being a mother myself means I often struggle to relate to the whole there’s nothing I wouldn’t do to protect my kids thing. And then there’s mention of Belfast and the IRA and even though that’s not exactly historical fiction I tend to stay away from anything that delves too deeply into politics or well…. history.