There’s nothing nicer than finding out you’ve won a book – I still remember the sheer joy I used to get at school if I’d won book tokens or been allowed to choose the title of the prize myself (‘The Children of Cherry Tree Farm’ by Enid Blyton was duly inscribed and stamped with my award – I just wish I knew where it was now). And a couple of years ago I entered a book giveaway competition via Twitter and, astonishingly won ‘Someone Else’s Skin‘ the debut novel from author Sarah Hilary (who I’d never heard of, but she won’t mind me saying that I’m sure).
Now I’m not your average Police Pocedural reader; I’ve read maybe a half dozen Crime novels – because I get flummoxed by the use of the characters ranks within the police hierarchy – and once I’ve met one DCI or DI or SOCO, then I’m buggered if I can work out who’s superior to who when they’re having a converstion – so it puts me off.
Not so Sarah Hilary’s D.I. Marnie Rome – the main character in which this, ‘Tastes Like Fear’ is the third in the series – the second one being ‘No Other Darkness’ which, believe me, will haunt you way after you’ve finished reading it – in both good and bad ways. Trust me.
So I was (as I was before) hugely delighted to have received the Uncorrected Proof Copy of Sarah’s latest DI Rome novel, and at over 500 pages long, I fully expected it’d take me well over a week to get through it. Again, not so.Because I’d forgotten how easily readable Sarah Hilary’s novels are; how effortlessly they feel they’ve been written and my goodness, how deeply emotive and satisfying these stories are. Here’s the blurb:
The young girl who causes the fatal car crash disappears from the scene. A runaway who doesn’t want to be found, she only wants to go home. To the one man who understands her.
Gives her shelter. Just as he gives shelter to the other lost girls who live in his house. He’s the head of her new family.
D.I. Marnie Rome has faced many dangerous criminals but she has never come up against a man like Harm. She thinks that she knows families, their secrets and their fault lines. But as she begins investigating the girl’s disappearance nothing can prepare her for what she’s about to face.
Because when Harm’s family is threatened, everything tastes like fear…
I know. And just from this little taster In could already feel that the character of Harm was going to be every bit as dangerous and manipulative and frightening as her other antagonists – I was totally hooked from page one – and I’m a difficult girl to please.
If you like your crime story pacy, unrelentless and with characters -main, secondary and even hugely unlikeable – that you can totally relate to and feel sympathy towards, then you will do no wrong by following D.I. Marnie Rome’s journey from her first outing in ‘Someone Else’s Skin’ right to this new one -however, each story does stand alone.
‘Tastes Like Fear’ is out on 7th April (hardback and e-book). And I’d pre-order this if you know what’s good for you!
10/10 – Another cracking good read from master storyteller Sarah Hilary 🙂