Today it’s my great pleasure to join the blog blitz for Dying Day, the latest book in the Kate Matthews series by Stephen Edger. My thanks go to Noelle Holten and Bookouture for inviting me to join the blitz. I’ll be sharing my thoughts with you in just a moment, as soon as we’ve seen what the book is all about.
The Official Book Blurb
Some mistakes you live with. Others you die for…
When the body of a young woman is found in the boot of an abandoned car near the Southampton Docks, Detective Kate Matthews is ordered to stay well away from the scene.
Exactly a year ago, Amy, a junior detective on Kate’s team, was murdered when she was sent undercover to catch a serial killer targeting young girls. Kate never forgave herself for letting the killer slip through her fingers and her team are worried this coincidence might push her over the edge…
When another girl’s body is uncovered days later with similar bruising around the neck, Kate launches an investigation of her own, determined to connect new evidence to the old to catch this monster before more innocent lives are taken…
Mysterious sympathy cards sent to the victims’ families finally lead Kate to the twisted individual from her past. But if she’s found the killer, why does the body count keep rising?
An absolutely heart-stopping crime thriller that will have you sleeping with the lights on. Perfect for fans of Robert Dugoni, James Patterson and M.J. Arlidge.
Now it’s safe to say that our introduction to Kate Matthews was a memorable one. It certainly made me rethink my breakfast choices that’s for sure. I’ll still be having porridge all of next week, I’m not put off my food that easily, but still … Porridge aside, it also gave us a little insight into Kate’s background and the reasons that she transferred to Southampton from a good job in the Met Police, reasons which come to the fore in blinding fashion in Dying Day.
The discovery of a body of a young woman bears all the hallmarks of a case from Kate’s past, the one which led to her transfer. A serial killer had been plaguing London, murdering young women with no clear motive or connection. One of her young DC’s is sent undercover to try to snare the killer, a decision which costs her life. Faced with the prospect of this being the same killer, and with the anniversary of Amy’s death looming, Kate is determined to find the killer before he strikes again.
Almost from the very beginning of this book you are caught up in fast paced, highly emotionally driven drama. From the discovery of the body in the boot, through to the shocking, almost heart-stopping, edge of the seat tension of the ending, Stephen Edger succeeds in taking the reader on one hell of a rollercoaster ride where the stakes, especially for Kate, have never been higher. I don’t want to talk much about the plot, as I think you need to read and connect all the dots for yourself with this one, but believe me, it’s a cracker and with so many twists, drops, loops and turns that it will keep you guessing right until the very end. Talk about adrenalin pumping. Alton Towers eat your heart out.
Being book two in a series, we already have a history with Kate and her team. I have to be honest and say that I wasn’t entirely sure about Kate and her methods in the last book. She is a complete maverick and it puts people in jeopardy. And yet there is definitely something about her and I think after this story she is definitely on my top Detectives list. She is determined, feisty, willing to go it alone if needs be but ultimately a really good copper with an instinctive nature. Her relationships are difficult, but there is a great camaraderie with DC Laura Trotter, who is perhaps her strongest ally on the team, and a really loving partnership developing with Ben, even if they don’t always see eye to eye. They are characters I can really get behind and am eager to see more from.
Structurally this is an interesting novel. Mostly told in the present day as the investigation moves from the initial discovery through to its conclusion, there are also passages told from the point of view of DC Amy Spencer in the days running up to her murder. It compliments the action, which includes reopening the investigation into her death, and drip feeds in key witness testimony alongside the disclosure and discovery made by Kate. Not only that, but it serves to humanize Kate and highlight the truth of what happened back in London. Amy is a woman not unlike Kate, but her absolute awe of her boss is clear through this particular narrative. In many ways she is similar to Laura and it is clear that Kate is respected by both women for more than just her rank.
I absolutely loved every minute of this book and surprised myself by racing through it in one evening. It really is that kind of book. So if you are looking for heart-thumping, adrenalin pumping action, tension which is at times off the charts, and a great cast of characters who make you both frustrated and happy in equal measure, give this book a go. I’m certainly glad I did and I can’t wait for book three.
With thanks to publishers Bookouture for the advance copy of Dying Day for review. It is available now from the following retailers:
About the Author
Stephen Edger is a British crime writer, who has been writing since 2010. In that time he has written and published eleven novels, and five short stories. He writes mysteries and thrillers focused on crime.
Stephen was born in the north-east of England, grew up in London, but has lived in Southampton since attending university in the year 2000. Stephen works in the financial industry, and uses his insider knowledge to create the plots of his books. He also has a law degree, which gives him a good understanding of the inner workings of the UK justice system.
Stephen is married, and has two children, and two dogs. He is passionate about reading and writing, and cites Simon Kernick and John Grisham as major influences on his writing style.