Dark Skies by LJ Ross

Day seven of LJ Ross month sees Mandie sharing her thoughts on Dark Skies, the next book in the DCI Ryan series in which he comes face to face with the most cunning of foes. What I love about the series is the way in which the author is literally plotting a map around some of the most picturesque parts of the North East and making you, the reader, feel as though you were right there. I’ve not yet made it to this book’s setting, Kielder, but it is definitely on the list. If you’d like to know my feelings on the book, you’ll find my review here, but Mandies thoughts can be found below. Here’s what the book is all about:

Source: Amazon

About the Book

Beware what lies beneath…

One fateful, starry night, three friends embark on a secret camping trip but only two return home. Thirty years later, the body of a teenage boy rises from the depths of England’s biggest reservoir and threatens to expose a killer who has lain dormant…until now.

Detective Chief Inspector Ryan returns from honeymoon to face danger from all sides. In the depths of Kielder Forest, a murderer has escaped justice before and will do anything to protect the secrets of the past. Meanwhile, back at Northumbria CID, an old foe has taken the helm as Superintendent and is determined to destroy Ryan at any cost.

Who will prevail in Ryan’s most dangerous case yet?

Murder and mystery are peppered with romance and humour in this fast-paced crime whodunit set amidst the spectacular Northumbrian landscape.

Mandie’s Thoughts

When a body is found in Kielder Water by some scuba divers the team are drawn into investigating a murder that happened over 30 years ago. This in itself presents challenges to them but this time they are dealing not just with a murder from the past but also some one from Ryan’s past, someone who is out to cause as much trouble for him as possible and this person actually has the power to make his life a living hell once more.

Investigating a murder from so long ago was never going to be easy and when one of Anna’s students is also killed the team are left wondering if it is connected, or if they are in fact dealing with two separate killers. For once Ryan is not the lead investigator and Denise Mackenzie is running the show, however Ryan being Ryan you just know somehow he will make sure he is involved no matter what. Its not that he doesn’t trust his team, its more that he just can’t stand by when there is a potential killer out there.

This is a hard book to write a review for without giving any major spoilers but one thing we do see is that even the impressive DCI Ryan was not always such a good judge of character and we find out part of the reason for him moving to Northumberland in the first place. I know that some people don’t like getting character backstories but I have to say that with Ryan and co I love it as somehow it just makes them just that little bit more real and these little snippets are only there when they are needed. And this one has real repercussions in his personal and professional life that ripples throughout the whole team. Just how you will need to read for yourself to find out, but I will say that Ryan really doesn’t have much luck in terms of his bosses.

Dark Skies may divide some as the ending is not what you might expect but it does make you want more and eager to see what happens next.

I do have one other reason for liking this book and that is due to the name of a certain character that is oh so familiar to me. I wont say if the real life person resembles the fictional character or not … but I might just think twice in the future before I wind them up just in case 😊

About the Author

LJ Ross is an international bestselling author, best known for creating atmospheric mystery and thriller novels, including the DCI Ryan series of Northumbrian murder mysteries which have sold over four million copies worldwide.

Her debut, Holy Island, was released in January 2015 and reached number one in the Amazon UK and Australian charts. Since then, she has released a further sixteen novels, all of which have been top three global bestsellers and fourteen of which have been UK #1 bestsellers. Louise has garnered an army of loyal readers through her storytelling and, thanks to them, several of her books reached the coveted #1 spot whilst only available to pre-order ahead of release. Her eleventh novel, The Infirmary, is a prequel story and is also available as a major Audible Originals audio-drama starring Tom Bateman, Kevin Whately, Bertie Carvel, Hermione Norris and Alun Armstrong.

Louise was born in Northumberland, England. She studied undergraduate and postgraduate Law at King’s College, University of London and then abroad in Paris and Florence. She spent much of her working life in London, where she was a lawyer for a number of years until taking the decision to change career and pursue her dream to write. Now, she writes full-time and lives with her husband and son in Northumberland, where she enjoys reading all manner of books, travelling and spending time with family and friends.

Louise is a keen philanthropist, and is pleased to have supported numerous non-profit programmes in addition to founding several of her own, including the Lindisfarne Reading Challenge and the Lindisfarne Prize for Debut Crime Fiction.

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