Today I hand over to Mandie who is taking part in the blog tour for the latest in the DI Mariner series by Chris Collett, Baby Lies. Thanks to Jill Burkinshaw and Joffe Books for including us on the tour and providing the advance copy for review. We’ll take a look at Mandie’s thoughts just as soon s we’ve seen what the book is all about.
About the Book
Do you love gripping mysteries with great characters?
Discover Detective Tom Mariner in this critically acclaimed series.
‘Collett is a wonderful writer, subtle, clever, strong on atmosphere and character.’ Yorkshire Post
Six-week-old baby Jessica is abducted from a local nursery. And Detective Tom Mariner realises he’s not going to get the time-off he was hoping for.
The police get a good description of the woman who took Jessica, but the appeal to the public doesn’t generate a single lead.
Then the kidnapper calls demanding money for Jessica’s safe return . . . and a terrible discovery is made in the woods.
Can Mariner get to bottom of a complex case which involves much more than a child abduction?
Discover an absorbing crime mystery full of stunning twists and turns.
Perfect for fans of Peter James, Ian Rankin and Peter Robinson. This is the fourth book in the DI MARINER SERIES, more books coming soon!
Birmingham is a city of stark contrasts with a rich cultural and historical heritage. Playing a key role in the industrial revolution, it helped shape the nation’s manufacturing industry
But with its many green spaces, Birmingham also borders on the beautiful countryside of Worcestershire and Warwickshire, is just a few miles from Stratford on Avon and a short drive from the wild country of mid-Wales.
Birmingham’s population is large and ethnically diverse, and while urban regeneration has forged a modern and culturally vibrant city, the decaying remnants of the industrial past and 1960s concrete jungle give it a unique and gritty character; the dark underbelly policed by DI Tom Mariner and his team.
Detective Inspector Tom Mariner is, on the surface, an average dedicated policeman, but his experiences as a younger man have given him an insight into life on the dark side, and a clear sense of right and wrong. Mariner has little interest in material things. He lives in a modest canal-side cottage, enjoys the occasional (real) beer and game of dominoes and drives an old car. He is most at home in the outdoors, with an OS map and a compass, and in times of crisis, will take off and walk for miles in any weather.
THIS IS A REVISED EDITION OF A BOOK FIRST PUBLISHED AS “BLOOD MONEY.”
DI MARINER SERIES
Book 1: Deadly Lies
Book 2: Innocent Lies
Book 3: Killer Lies
Book 4: Baby Lies
This is the fourth outing for DI Tom Mariner and his team that sees him investigating prostitution rings and child abductions. Added to this Tom also has to deal with issues in his relationship and the trial of a past case.
The book starts with an organised raid on various brothels and DI Mariner and his team are involved in one in Birmingham and to be honest you would think that this is the direction that the book is going in. No sooner have they completed this and just as Tom was about to set off on some well-earned leave he takes a call alerting him to a child abduction from a crèche near to the hospital.
You get the sense that despite the fact that this break has been on the cards for a while Tom is not unduly upset that it will have to be delayed however he is not so keen to tell his partner Anna that his is going to have to stay on the case until it is resolved, leaving that particular task to his DS. When the abduction is resolved quite quickly and without any real incident he is not convinced that there is not more to it than meets the eye and he is determined to follow every lead despite the case effectively being closed. The team’s digging links cases from the present and the past, enabling them to close an old murder case along the way. With his personal life falling apart he still feels a sense of responsibility to one of the girls he encounters at the beginning of the book.
For me the team worked well together and there were just enough back stories for each of the characters to be able to read this as a stand-alone. The author gives a real sense of what the illegal brothel workers where subjected to without it being unnecessarily graphic including touching on the subject of human trafficking.
I seem to be making a habit of reading books that are part way through a series and this is no exception. Although I know there are those that would not consider doing such a thing, for me I believe if I can read a book that is part way through a series and don’t feel that it doesn’t make sense or I am missing something then the author has done a good job. Unless the actual story takes place over several books then each one should be able to stand on its own merits and leave the reader wanting to go out and hunt down the other books and look forward to more. This one definitely fits into that category for me and I flew through it quite quickly. Set around Birmingham it was nice to see place names that were familiar to me and I think that this helped me to connect to the story. Sometimes being able to picture an area in your head whilst you are reading can make that subtle difference
Thanks Mandie. Baby Lies is available now from the following retailers:
About the Author
I was born and grew up in a Norfolk seaside town, almost as far east as it’s possible to go in England without falling into the North Sea. There I worked variously in a boarding house (now defunct) a local bakery (closed down) and a crisp factory (razed to the ground). I graduated in Liverpool, then for twenty-five years taught children and young people with learning disabilities, including autism, before going into higher education as a senior lecturer.
Mindful of its reputation, I moved somewhat reluctantly to Birmingham, where I met my husband, in 1981. But just a few years later DI Tom Mariner was created to police its mean streets, and these days I relish the vibrancy and rich social history of the city. After eight outings for Mariner, I still feel as if I’ve barely scratched the surface.
Recently retired from lecturing and I’m currently luxuriating in the time I now have to continue the Mariner series, alongside published short stories and academic works. In my spare time, among other things, I’m a manuscript assessor for the Crime Writers Association.
Follow Chris on Twitter
Make sure to check out some of the other blogs taking part in the tour.