Publication Date: Available Now (UK) from Little Brown (US) from Grove Atlantic
Source: Netgalley (Grove)
DI Nicola Tanner needs Tom Thorne’s help. Her partner, Susan, has been brutally murdered and Tanner is convinced that it was a case of mistaken identity—that she was the real target. The murderer’s motive might have something to do with Tanner’s recent work on a string of cold-case honor killings she believes to be related. Tanner is now on compassionate leave but insists on pursuing the case off the books and knows Thorne is just the man to jump into the fire with her. He agrees but quickly finds that working in such controversial territory is dangerous in more ways than one. And when a young couple goes missing, they have a chance to investigate a case that is anything but cold.
Always a joy to spend some time with Tom Thorne, definitively for me one of the best fictional detectives on the scene currently, with Love Like Blood Mark Billingham tackles a sensitive and I think very important subject with a healthy dose of reality and genuine consideration. That plus giving us a banging great read as always.
Much less a whodunnit and much more a twisted tale to the full truth of the matter, Tom is pulled into a contrary situation by Nicola Tanner (see Die Of Shame ) who having suffered a horrific personal lost is determined to bring those responsible to justice. Convinced it is tied into a theory she was investigating she hopes Thorne will show his usual disregard for procedure and follow the leads unconsidered in the main investigation. So there we begin..
What I love generally speaking is the way this author brings a strong emotional core to the centre of all the stories he writes – the ongoing interpersonal relationships (I’m the biggest fan of Phil you will find) are always layered beautifully into each individual plot, whilst the supporting cast are given just as much depth. The writing is always immersive and completely addictive – as a reader you genuinely live with these people for a while. No different with Love Like Blood which I read fast, often angrily, the best reads are the ones that grip you by the heartstrings, not letting go and send you through a gamut of emotions as you head towards the finale. And this finale had me clutching my hair.
Honor Killings are very real, difficult to talk about, difficult to pin down, Love Like Blood is obviously researched and there is a huge authenticity to it that sends you on that emotional journey. I’d like to point out that when I read the Authors Note after finishing the book I had actual tears in my eyes, it made me look back on what I had just read with slightly different eyes.
Overall a really excellent, entertaining yet hugely thought provoking read that I would actually like to throw at everybody. Read it. Even if you are new to the series I see no reason you couldn’t start here.
There is no life…