The sergeant took some from each box and spread them around the floor so they could all see. Dozens upon dozens of them. DI Rachel Narey’s guess was that there were a few hundred in all.
Many of them were in crowd scenes, some just sitting on a park bench or walking a dog or waiting for a bus or working in shops. They seemed to have no idea they’d been photographed.
A dawn raid on the home of a suspected rapist leads to a chilling discovery, a disturbing collection hidden under floorboards. Narey is terrified at the potential scale of what they’ve found and of what brutalities it may signal.
When the photographs are ruled inadmissible as evidence and the man walks free from court, Narey knows she’s let down the victim she’d promised to protect and a monster is back on the streets.
Tony Winter’s young family is under threat from internet trolls and he is determined to protect them whatever the cost. He and Narey are in a race against time to find the unknown victims of the photographer’s lens – before he strikes again.
First things first, this is the 7th in the series of Rachel Narey/Tony Winter books by Craig Robertson. Do not let that put you off if you haven’t read others in the series however. This is only the second book from this series – or this author – that I had read and there is no impediment to enjoying this book if you haven’t read previous instalments. The author expertly provides you with enough information to get to know the motivations of these characters without bogging you down in needless back story.
The main characters are well put together – as you would imagine from a series – and the supporting characters all feel genuine. The one slight issue I had with characters was the antagonist. He was painted as someone who had hidden his proclivities behind a successful façade for a number of years but as soon as that mask is pulled away he becomes almost a scooby-doo villain. Don’t get me wrong he was still well written and I was certainly wanting him to get what he deserved, it just felt that when his true self was discovered there was no attempt by him to try and retain control.
The plot moves forward quickly with a great sense of pace and a couple of great twists and turns as it goes. I found it genuinely creepy and thought provoking in places The only negative for me, other than that mentioned above was that I didn’t feel like a got a great deal of tension at the final showdown.
Overall I highly recommend you give this a try if dark crime thrillers appeal to you even slightly.
The Beer Accompaniment:
A dark thriller that was still a page-turner leads me to a dark beer but one that isn’t a stout or porter. Instead I would suggest a dark lager. The book felt so current and – I’m sure co-incidentally – even referred to an individual who was back in the news when I read the book. It was also released at around the same time the #metoo movement was at its height and dealt with a lot of similar issues in terms of the ease of reporting and conviction of those types of crime.
For those reasons I would recommend the wonderful Zeitgeist by Brewdog. A dark nutty, malty lager but almost remains sessionable due to the balance of carbonation. Get it now while available as it is one of Brewdog’s seasonal releases.