Today I am delighted to share my review of Rebecca Bradley’s latest DI Hannah Robbins thriller, The Twisted Web. My thanks to the author for providing a copy of the book for review and for Emma Welton of damppebbles Blog Tours for inviting me to join the tour. Here is what it is all about.
About the Book
A social media shaming. A killer with a message. A deadly combination.
When the body of a man is left in the city centre set up as a realistic police crime scene, DI Hannah Robbins is forced to enter a world that can break a person, a case and a reputation.
Social media platforms light up and Hannah is pitted against the raging online monster and a killer who has already lost everything.
Can she catch the killer and put him behind bars or will she become part of his sadistic game?
Buy The Twisted Web and step inside the game…
For fans of Angela Marsons and Robert Bryndza
First things first – complete honesty. This is the first book I have read of the Hannah Robbins series, although I have read other books by the author, and so I was intrigued to read it and get a flavour of what the series was all about. It is easy to read as a standalone novel, although you will undoubtedly benefit from having read the other books first as you will know the characters better and there are a few situations in the books which are referenced but not necessarily fully explained that will probably mean more to those who know the series. That said, because not too much was made of them, it didn’t detract from the story or prevent me from being fulled immersed in what I was reading.
In the very beginning we are introduced to a character who is going to have a key role to play in this story, although, from the outset, it is hard to see why. It soon all becomes clear as following the first murder, more of the back ground of the character is revealed and what you read may surprise you but not necessarily shock.
A ma is murdered and left on the steps of the town centre, the area cordoned off, to all intents and purposes making it look like an abandoned crime scene. The pictures are soon all over the web, people demanding answers of the police. Although it is not the police who have left a body unattended, and this victim will only be the first. Another high profile murder, once more leaked to the internet sees Hannah Robbins and her team under mounting pressure to catch a killer whose reason for murder remains carefully hidden. But perhaps not carefully enough …
Although this is my first book by the author, I was quickly pulled into the story by a fluid and engaging writing style. The style of murders intrigued me and the mystery which the team were yet to solve kept me wanting to read on, curious as to how far the killer will go and how the police will ever stop them. Now, as a reader, it is no surprise as to who the killer is, nor their motives, but the way in which Rebecca Bradley has portrayed them, the slow unravelling of their psyche and their escalating murder spree is quite tense and well observed. It was a strange mixture as I felt both empathy, to a degree, and hatred for the perpetrator.
I really liked Hannah and her team and as a character, in spite of having a lot on her mind, Hannah was someone I warmed to very quickly. I was happy to follow her through the investigation and loved her friendship with Aaron Stone. It is a great partnership, although somewhat tested in this book due to Aaron’s personal circumstances. It is not helped by the DCI, Kevin Baxter, who seems determined to sideline Aaron as soon as possible, something Hannah will not allow. Her fierce loyalty, not only to Aaron but to her team, was something I was drawn to, as well as her determination and confident and yet still vulnerable nature.
This is a difficult book to say too much about as you really need to read it to understand. Everything is spelt out very clearly, the pacing and tension driving the story along to a heart stopping conclusion. It touches upon the theme of social media, of lives played out on instantly screen for immediate gratification, rather than thinking about the person behind the story and respecting each other’s privacy. Of the impact of people’s journalism and how we must record and report everything, even last night’s dinner. Highly topical and a subject which will continue to grow and create debate as technology progresses. I think the author did a great job of clarifying how this damages not only victims and families, but also police investigations, adding another layer of pressure in an already tense job.
There are some moments of great peril in this book, those elements where the author takes you to the edge of your seat, and the conclusion is as white knuckle as you could hope for. With great characters and an intriguing, if not entirely new, premise, I really enjoyed this book and look forward to reading more from the author.
If you would like a copy of the book then it is available now from the following retailers:
About the Author
Rebecca is the author of four novels in the DI Hannah Robbins series, Shallow Waters, Made to be Broken, Fighting Monsters and The Twisted Web as well as a standalone thriller, Dead Blind.
She lives with her family in the UK with their two Cockapoos Alfie and Lola, who keep Rebecca company while she writes. Rebecca needs to drink copious amounts of tea to function throughout the day and if she could, she would survive on a diet of tea and cake while committing murder on a regular basis.
After 16 years service, Rebecca was medically retired from the police where she finished as a detective constable on a specialist unit.
Rebecca now runs a consulting service where she supports crime writers in making sure their fiction is authentic so they can get on with telling a great story. You can find details of that HERE.
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