Publication Date: Available Now from Mulholland Books.
The girl’s body lay on the steps of the Foundling Museum. She was dressed all in white, and tagged with the number 12.
Britain’s most prolific child killer, Louis Kinsella, murdered nine children before he was caught and locked away for life in Northwood high-security hospital. Now someone is carrying on his work. Four girls have disappeared in North London. Three are already dead…
So, the “Alice Quentin” series then – I got confuddled and read out of order, so I read and loved the 2nd book (A Killing of Angels) followed by the 1st book (Crossbones Yard) which I also loved and now here I am back on track with Book 3 – The Winter Foundlings.
For a start every single one of these has been beautifully written, very engaging and wonderfully constructed, top notch crime fiction with a well rounded and likeable yet flawed heroine in Alice Quentin. I have always had a soft spot for fiction written with a psychologist or profiler as a main protagonist (HUGE fan of Tony Hill from Val McDermid and Joe O Loughlin from Michael Robotham) and this series is definitely equal, if not on occasion overtaking those much loved books. The quality of storytelling, addictive reading and intriguing character building both of regular series characters and the supporting cast that arrive with each new case is terrific and each novel raises the stakes and becomes more and more entertaining.
In this instalment, Alice is hoping to take a more sedate role, doing some research at Northwood High Security hospital on the methods and results obtained there in their work with violent criminals – however when a childs body is found and another child goes missing she is once again sucked into the vortex of a police investigation right on her doorstep. With her usual indomitable style she faces danger with determination and it is compelling stuff.
What I love about Alice is how absolutely realistic she is in her thoughts, actions and how she is developing as time moves on. She may be a strong, independant and intelligent woman in what could very much still be described as a mans world – but she is also appropriately scared, able to accept and absorb the advice of others and has no tendency to feel hard done by. I LOVE that about her, she takes things in her stride but equally has very human emotions and responses that keep you right by her side throughout any and all circumstance. If you are going to stick with a series of books, you absolutely need someone in there that you want to know about, need to keep up with and who gives you that “YAY” feeling when you know another part of their story is on the way. Alice does all that and then some, through the extremely clever and great writing from author Kate Rhodes.
There are dark and violent themes running through the narrative, but all done in an authentic and real way with a clear eye towards facts where appropriate, obviously well researched in the backgrounds which gives all these books both an escape from the realities of your real life and an immersion into what could easily be the real life of the person standing next to you. Intelligent plotting with some real edge of the seat moments means that I really really cannot wait for book no 4. In my top 10 series I must read for sure.
Overall a brilliant read and definitely highly recommended for any crime fiction fan – or if you are about to dip your toe in the water of Crime fiction for the first time I think these would be a great start, as they are easy to read but offer great depth of story and character.
Find out more here: http://katerhodes.org/Kate_Rhodes/home.html
Follow Kate on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/K_RhodesWriter
Happy Reading Folks!