“It was like a magic trick, an illusion, maybe a sleight of hand. Look over there while I do this over here. She could just about manage to disassociate herself from the events unfolding before her eyes as long as she could distract her mind with solving the case, sifting the clues, following the leads, and searching for evidence.”
If you’ve been following my reviews for any length of time, then I’m sure it comes as no surprise that this was an easy 5 stars to give. The D.I. Kim Stone series has been dear to my heart for years now; I remember feeling so pleased when I began and realized there were already 3 books out to keep me occupied, only to find myself distraught once I had immediately caught up and began the long wait between each installment with all the other mega fans. Misery loves company. All that to say, it’s extremely rare for me to follow a series for the length of 10 books; in fact, I can only think of two other series I have done so with (Karin Slaughter’s Grant County/Will Trent series and Harlan Coben’s Myron Bolitar series), so please understand I hold these books in the highest regard with the loftiest of expectations for each story that is released.
If you’ve been following the series from the beginning (which I highly recommend doing, otherwise you’re missing all the really good stuff), you’ll understand just how pivotal this particular installment is. We’ve come full circle, right back around to where it all began, with Kim Stone’s horrific past. Someone is recreating every nightmarish event that our fearless leader has experienced, and the entire team is barely holding it together. As per usual, there are a few other side stories going on as well, which is how Angie always manages to keep me clueless as to the who, what, when, where, and why until the bloody fabulous reveal at the end. Typically police procedurals grow stale after a few books, but Marsons’ manages to blend unique plot twists with deep characterization that brings us back for more. There is an intimacy to these characters that I have yet to find elsewhere in a thriller; the relationship I have is almost sacred with this group of comrades, and how rare is it to find that in books that are violent, graphic, and all levels of disturbing by nature?
If you’re on the fence about reading these books because there are 10 installments published already, please don’t. I rarely, if never, recommend friends to go back and read long term series, but I would be a selfish friend who was doing you a disservice if I kept you from experiencing everything that Angie has to offer you via Kim Stone and her crew. Squad goals. If you enjoy serial killer thrillers, but have grown weary of picking them up due to the bad taste that some have left in your mouth from being so similar, just know that this is a top notch series, so much so that big name publishers have tried to steal the author away from beloved Bookouture, yet she gracefully has kept her allegiance in a classy move of loyalty to the people who gave her a shot. There are no words to recommend this series highly enough, and I do hope you enjoy them as much as I have.
*I received a review copy from the publisher via NetGalley.