Charlotte’s baby is safe. But is she?
When the body of mother Charlotte Brannon is discovered by her husband Adam, in their bedroom, Detective Natalie Ward is first on the scene. The killer has left a chilling calling card: The word ‘Why?’ written on the wall in blood.
As Natalie begins to delve deeper into the couple’s lives, she discovers that Adam has a dark past he’s been hiding and she’s sure that the Brannon’s teenage babysitter Inge has secrets of her own.
Then another mother is murdered on her doorstep in front of her young son, the word ‘why’ scrawled on the wall next to her.
All the key suspects have alibis and with her own marriage hanging by a thread, Natalie is struggling to stay focused on cracking her toughest case yet.
When a young woman and her baby disappear, a member of Natalie’s own team is put in terrible danger. Can Natalie stop this twisted serial killer and save one of her own before more families are torn apart forever?
This is the second book in the Detective Natalie Ward series and again I’ve been shocked (in a good way) by how unflinching the author is when it comes to writing brutal and realistic crimes. She avoids all of the coy euphemisms that normally irritate me in crime thrillers and doesn’t shy away from the violent reality of murder.
Wyer’s writing style really appeals to me – most of our time is spent in the mind of Detective Natalie Ward (which is only fair, given that this is her series!). She’s a very likable main character – practically minded, intelligent, good at her job and trying her best to maintain a work-life balance when it’s impossible to do so with an emotionally difficult job and a family with their own needs at home. I found myself becoming increasingly attached to her in this book, she’s the perfect character to carry this series forward.
The crimes in this book are well written and investigated, the pacing is perfect and it really feels like you’re part of the investigation and learning the facts as the police do – letting you come to your own conclusions throughout. That’s the fun of a police procedural, as far as I’m concerned!
All of the characters in this book are complex and well written. For me, having Diana Croft as the narrator for the book was the icing on the cake – we already know that she’s one of my all time favourite narrators (and I’m picky as hell). This book contains a lot of dialogue between characters and she manages to give each one their own distinctive voice in both tone and accent, with no confusion between characters – it really is impressive.
I’m now going to have to hold my breath until the third book is released in audio, the audiobook has set my expectations too high to enjoy it any other way!