A Man is mysteriously found dead at his own kitchen table. Garda Mike West is back on the scene to solve the crime only to find himself confronted by the illustrious Kelly Johnson. After five months since seeing kelly, their lives are about to collide in an unexpected way
I was intrigued to see how this novel would develop after the conclusion of One That May. The opening was particularly good, I had coincidentally started reading The Suspicions of Mr Whicher at the same point and the murder scenes echoed each other very nicely. I felt like I was in a modern version of The Murder at Road Hill House.
Once the scene had been set and the crime established, I began to wonder whether or not Kelly Johnson would fit into this book as there seemed to be a lot left unsaid in the last novel and I was keen to see whether Keogh would reintroduce her. I wasn’t disappointed.
Kelly wasn’t my favourite character in the first book, in fact she cast a more favourable light on Mike West which potentially worked better, however this time round we get to see a different side to her which is much more pleasing.
The tension between Kelly and Mike is my favourite aspect of the book. It was fun to see how they reacted to each other in the different, yet somehow the same, circumstances and how throughout the novel we experience both sides of their emotional frustration with each other. This works particularly well especially when they finally begin to understand each other, only for it to go out the window again! I loved this.
The murderer, when revealed, was completely unexpected – although it gradually became clear as we got closer to the revelation – and the near misses with the cops is perfectly executed with even a light amount of humour.
There were moments when the text could do with some tweaking and minor editing. I won’t deny that there were a number of typos but the book as a whole was great to read. I’ve seen many people refer to this as ‘cozy’ in the reviews and I think that’s a great quality. There is an awful lot of stuff out there that’s trying to be as dark, sinister and psychological as you can get so it was great to read something that was fairly straightforward and an easy read.
I loved the plot and really enjoyed the twists and turns that came with it. As I got towards the end of the book, I found myself wondering how it was going to be resolved as we were very close to the end. The very last scene is perhaps my favourite – I won’t give it away – and it was one that we’ve waited two books to see which is perhaps what makes it sweeter.
I really liked this book, the characters, the story and I really value the author too. I think she’s an extremely talented and capable lady. I hope we see many more of these in the future.
If you would like to buy Valerie’s book, you can do so here.
If you’re interested in my reviews of her other novels, please take a look here: