Book Title: Cold Blood
Author: Robert Bryndza
Series: Det. Erika Foster #5
Genres: Crime Fiction, Mystery, Police Procedural
Pub Date: 09/20/17
When a battered suitcase containing the dismembered body of a young man washes up on the shore of the river Thames, Detective Erika Foster is shocked. She’s worked on some terrifying cases but never seen anything like this before.
As Erika and her team set to work, she makes the link with another victim – the body of a young woman dumped in an identical suitcase two weeks ago.
Erika quickly realises she’s on the trail of a serial killer who’s already made their next move. Yet just as Erika starts to make headway with the investigation, she is the victim of a brutal attack.
But nothing will stop Erika. As the body count rises, the twin daughters of her colleague Commander Marsh are abducted, and the stakes are higher than ever before. Can Erika save the lives of two innocent children before it’s too late? She’s running out of time and about to make a disturbing discovery…there’s more than one killer.
I wasn’t quite sure what to think going into Cold Blood; I’ve seen some less than glowing reviews floating around from readers I trust, which made me nervous. I have 5 starred the previous four novels, as this series is in my “top three currently running most anticipated” storylines, and we all know it’s easy to burnout on these books the longer they run. I devoured this particular installment in a mad rush because I simply couldn’t put it down, which made me realize two things: 1) Everyone’s opinion is valid and deserves to be heard, and 2) Many book reviews (including my own) are highly influenced by these opinions, which is a beautiful thing. I love that I was able to feel differently about this book and take away separate insights than my fellow readers. The beauty of the book community is that we can all read the same thing and at the same time, feel like we’ve read something entirely different. All this to say, THIS particular book worked extremely well for me.
I can certainly see why the audience is so divisive over the direction Bryndza took with our reoccurring characters. I’ll be extremely vague, as to not spoil anything, but there were a few bold and risky moves used to shake us out of our comfort zone and keep us on our toes- I LOVED THIS! Anyone who knows me knows that I tire of the traditional, cliche relationships (romantic or platonic) that follow a predictable path; you know, the type where nothing ever happens to break things apart and leave messy gaping holes in your heart. I’m a glutton for punishment, and I love when an author can take me out of my comfort zone and get me a little riled up, which is exactly what Rob has done with this book.
The pacing was very quick and kept things fresh by alternating between the present day investigation and our serial killer(s?)’s background, until we finally link up and both sides are presented in real time. I found this particular case deliciously gruesome and intriguing, and particularly loved the detailed information regarding drug trafficking. I appreciated the extra insight into Erika’s past and present personal life and found myself feeling simultaneously closer to her and yet irritated by her choices, almost like a sister or close friend whom you only want the best for. The fact that the author can stimulate such care and concern for fictional characters proves what a powerhouse the series truly is.
I don’t want to keep rambling, but I think the fact that so many aspects of the continuing storyline have rapidly evolved makes me feel like my choice in committing to read this series was a valuable one. When you think about how much time, money, and effort can be invested into a long running storyline, it’s comforting when you find an author who delivers the goods time and time again. I know I’ve found that with Robert Bryndza, and I’m honestly delighted to follow along and see where he takes us next. If you’re looking for a new crime fiction series that is darkly disturbing, yet infused with dry humor and wit, please give these books a try and do yourself the favor of starting with The Girl In The Ice. Highly recommended!
*Many thanks to the publisher for providing my copy; it was a pleasure to provide my honest thoughts here!
COLD BLOOD IS CURRENTLY AVAILABLE TO PURCHASE VIA THE LINKS BELOW:
Robert Bryndza is the author of the international #1 bestseller The Girl in the Ice. The Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestseller is the first book in the Detective Erika Foster series. The Night Stalker, Dark Water and Last Breath are the second, third, and fourth books in the series, and the fifth book, Cold Blood is now available to purchase.
Robert’s books have sold over 2 million copies, and have been translated into 27 languages. In addition to writing crime fiction, Robert has published a bestselling series of romantic comedy novels. He is British and lives in Slovakia.