Residents of the sleepy Lancashire village of Kelton Bridge, where forensic psychologist Jill Kennedy has made her home, are looking forward to Christmas. But then the body of a young woman is discovered on the bleak hillside and, for some, life will never be the same again.
The season of goodwill has bypassed Jill’s colleague DCI Max Trentham. Having spent the past four months looking into the disappearance of schoolgirl Yasmin Smith, Max now begins the hunt for Lauren Cole’s killer. And all the evidence points to one man.
But Max’s chief suspect is Jill’s neighbour and she refuses to believe him guilty of the brutal murder. Yet, as they delve into his past, Jill to clear her friend’s name and Max to secure a conviction, Jill is forced to question her own judgement. And then another body is found…
Reviewer: Jenny Twist
It is a bitterly cold winter and a young girl has disappeared. Her father is still frantically searching for her long after the police have run out of leads, and Max Trentham, head of the investigation, is filled with frustration and guilt. Then another young girl is found murdered on the hillside, her faithful little dog still guarding the body. All the evidence points to one man, but Max is unable to find enough proof to make an arrest.
Then he discovers the woman he loves is being stalked by somebody particularly nasty, nasty enough to kill a cat and leave it hanging outside Jill's house.
Are all these cases connected? It looks like they might be. Then yet another body is found...
I was absolutely gripped by this story. It has everything I want from a book. It is beautifully written, with clear, uncluttered prose. The characters are utterly believable and I identified with all of them, especially Max, Jill and the chief suspect, Steve. The plot is complex, but not difficult to follow.
I found myself drawn into the world of the Lancashire village of Kelton Bridge and became engrossed not only in Max's dilemma, but in his relationship with Jill and with his children from a previous marriage. I dearly wanted it to work out for them. And I was desperate for him to find the missing girl.
Of course, I won't tell you what happened. You will have to read the book for yourself.
Shades of Evil is one of the best books I've read this year. It is one of a series about Max Trentham and Jill Kennedy and I have put the others on my wish list.
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