Deadly Fate by Angela Marsons

Today I am absolutely thrilled to be wishing Angela Marsons a very happy publication day, and to be kicking off the #BooksOnTour schedule for Bookouture. I love this series so have to say a big thank you to Kim Nash for the tour invite and to Bookouture for the early copy for review. Here’s what it’s all about:

Source: Netgalley

About the Book

The woman’s bright blonde hair floats in the breeze. She almost looks like she could be resting on the soft green grass. But her brown eyes stare unblinking up at the sky, and the final cut across her mouth is dark with blood. Her words silenced forever…

Late one evening, as the final church bell rings out, Sandra Deakin’s cold and lifeless body is found in the overgrown graveyard with multiple stab wounds. When Detective Kim Stone rushes to the scene, the violence of the attack convinces her that this murder was deeply personal. What could have caused such hate?

As the team dig into Sandra’s life, they discover she believed she could communicate with the dead. Was that why she was targeted? The last people to see her alive were a group of women who had a session with her the night before she was killed, and as Kim and her team pay them a visit, they soon learn each of the women is lying about why they wanted Sandra’s help…

Kim realises she must dig deep and open her mind to every avenue if she’s going to stand a chance at solving this case. And when she learns that Sandra was banned from the church grounds and had been receiving death threats too, she’s ever more certain that Sandra’s gifts are at the heart of everything.

But just when she thinks she’s found a lead, the broken body of a nineteen-year-old boy is found outside a call centre – a single slash across his mouth just like Sandra’s. Kim knows they are now racing against time to understand what triggered these attacks, and to stop a twisted killer.

But they might be too late. Just as Kim sits down at a local psychic show she discovers something that makes her blood run cold. Both Sandra and the call centre were named in an article about frauds. And this show stars the next name on the list. She looks around the audience with a feeling of utter dread, certain the killer is among them

Totally addictive with a final twist that will leave you shouting out loud, you’ll want to inhale Deadly Fate in one sitting. Fans of Karin Slaughter, Val McDermid and Robert Dugoni will love the new crime thriller from the number one multi-million-copy bestselling author Angela Marsons.

My Thoughts

You know those books which are too good to put down? The ones you seem to lose your day/evening too but where you just don’t care a jot? Well, it’s fair to say that Angela Marsons is a master at writing those kinds of books and with Deadly Fate she has done it once again, delivering a book that kept me on the edge of my seat and left me in no small way fearful for the fate of one of our most beloved team. If you have not read any Kim Stone books by now (and if not, why not) then I urge you to begin. You will not be disappointed.

Book eighteen (yes – you read that right) sees Kim and co heading into a world which they meet with no small amount of scepticism. A vicious murder is committed in the grounds of a church. The victim? A Medium, Sandra Deakin, whose communication with spirits and forces beyond our mortal realm have left more than a few feathers ruffled. From fellow Mediums, to disgruntled former clients, who could possibly have wanted to kill the poor woman and in such a vicious way? And believe me, it is pretty dang vicious. But then the list of suspects is surprisingly long, as, soon enough, is the list of potential and actual victims.

I really enjoy this series. I’ve never tried to hide it. It’s set in a local area to me, towns and villages I recognise, which always goes a long way to making a story enjoyable. Gives it that personal touch and allows you to feel immersed in the action that teeny bit more. And Angela Marsons knows her locations well, using them to great effect, picking just the right kind of spot, and town, to unleash her dastardly deeds,as dastardly they often are. As for the team, you couldn’t meet a more varied and yet lovable bunch, each of whom brings something a touch of special to the story. From Bryant, Kim’s long suffering DS and partner in crime fighting, to Penn and Stacey, there is a brilliant blend of camaraderie, humour and determination which makes them a very addictive team. I do love the grudging respect hidden by pointed barbs that flow between Kim and pathologist Keats, a kind of dark wit which softens the dark nature of the crime a touch without sacrificing the drama or tension. All of them are on top form once again, testament to Angela Marsons writing that she can still keep this team fresh and interesting, and me completely invested in their fates.

As for the supporting cast, we’ve a real mixture of characters, and suspects to choose from. Angela Marsons has infused them with characteristics that range from skin crawling to fun loving and everything in between. The women who make up Sandra Deakin’s last paying gig are as different as they come and it’s hard not to suspect nearly each and every one of them in some way, the author casting doubt over nearly all of their motives and the opportunity they may have had to commit murder. Needless to say, the reasons why any of the women sought the guidance of a medium, or spiritualist, varies greatly, as does the urgency with which they seem to seek an answer. There is a true emotional element to some of their stories, one of which sends Kim and the team off on an entirely different investigation. And there is another, unconnected, case which Kim sets Penn to unravel that gives us an interesting diversion from the horrors of the main murder investigation, and goes a way to show just what a big softie Kim Stone really is and how much compassion runs behind her often abrupt and always direct manner. But that’s the reason why we love her, right?

Be prepared for some really tense moments in this book. And it’s not a big, all action, high threat finale that will have you slowly leaning forward in your seats (even though there is kind of one of those). There is an altogether different threat that runs through the book, and the way in which the author has woven it into the main story, paying due respect to the subject matter whilst creating an overwhelming feeling of anxiety at times, is just perfect. This is a case that will push one of the team close to the edge but if you want to know the why’s and wherefores of that bit of the story, you’re going to have to read the book. It’s not quite on a par with that book (fans know the one) in terms of the emotional manipulation, but it’s getting pretty dang close and the final pages will have you chewing your nails to the quick, wondering what can possibly come next. Contrast that unease against the very emotional scenes which come near to the end of the book, truths which are finally revealed from an unexpected source from Kim’s past, and it makes for quite the heady mix and a brilliantly addictive read.

A case that will challenge all of Kim’s long held, logically driven beliefs, and that will delight and perhaps even distress fans in equal measure. 18 books in and the series is showing no signs of losing its appeal, leaving me absolutely desperate for the next one. Definitely recommended.

About the Author

Angela Marsons is the Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author of the DI Kim Stone series and her books have sold more than 5 million in 7 years.

She lives in Worcestershire with her partner and their 2 cheeky Golden Retrievers.

She first discovered her love of writing at Junior School when actual lessons came second to watching other people and quietly making up her own stories about them. Her report card invariably read “Angela would do well if she minded her own business as well as she minds other people’s”.

After years of writing relationship based stories (The Forgotten Woman and Dear Mother) Angela turned to Crime, fictionally speaking of course, and developed a character that refused to go away.

She is signed to for a total of 28 books in the Kim Stone series and her books have been translated into 30 languages.

Many of her books, including Blood Lines, Dead Souls, Broken Bones, Fatal Promise and Dead Memories reached the #1 spot on Amazon on pre-orders alone and the translation of Dead Souls, La Verita Sepolte, recently won the prestigious Primo Bancarella award.

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