Please forgive me for what I’m about to do…
Standing at the school gates, he waits until the last child leaves the safety of the playground. And then he follows at a distance, keeping to the shadows. Only he knows what’s going to happen next.
In a quiet church, on a busy London street, 12-year-old Donovan Blair is found dead. His hands are clasped together as if in prayer. Just hours ago, he was happily playing with his friends at school, but now his body is lifeless, and his killer is long gone.
Detective Dan Lockhart is working alone on his wife’s missing person’s case when he receives a call telling him to get to the crime scene at St Mary’s Church immediately.
Bringing in psychologist Dr Lexi Green to help profile the murderer, Dan is convinced that the killer has provided a clue by leaving the body in a prayer position, and Lexi agrees. As they try to get into the mind of the person responsible, another victim is found. A 13-year-old girl, left in a different church, posed in exactly the same way.
Fearing the murderer may already have another child in his sights, Dan and Lexi work together to establish links between the two deaths, and soon discover that not only were both children in care – they had attended the same school. And when it emerges that Lexi’s new boyfriend works there, things become difficult between her and Dan. How much can he tell Lexi about the case? And could she be at risk?
As Dan makes a breakthrough in the investigation, he receives devastating news about his wife, Jess. But with children’s lives at stake and Lexi in danger, Dan must put his personal emotions aside and chase the killer. Can he and Lexi work out who is behind the murders before another vulnerable child is taken?
About four months ago I read the previous part in the Lockhart and Green series. That’s not a lot, but it feels like a lifetime when you are counting the days. 😊
Now that I finally had a new book in my hands, it was a case of ‘don’t call me, I’ll call you’ as soon as I finish the story of course. 😉 So goodbye world, hello Detective Lockhart.
The thing with a good book is that you know when you start, but you don’t know when you will be able to stop. You just don’t want to. The short chapters seduce you time and time again to read one more and when you finally decide to call it a day, there is that teaser at the and of the chapter and off you go again.
Dan and his team have a lot to deal with and not much to go on. The author gives us a whole bucketload of possible culprits to chose from and honestly I did not have a clue who to pick. The profile Dr Green made fitted them all.
Suddenly an important clue is found and you think YES, now it’s all going to be crystal clear until you realize that the author was one step ahead again and I still did not come one tiny bit closer. It made me smile, because it’s when the penny drops and I never noticed it. Clever idea 😊
Who is finally cracking the case wide open and is responsible for a race against the clock? And more important, who will be the winner? To get the answers, you will have to read this incredible book.
Dan is not ready to slow down though. He has some personal matters he has to take care of. He had to postpone them because his job happened, but now it’s time to go and get some answers.
I was very pleased to see a little bit of Belgium in the story. Lovely.
Another amazingly good book. 5 stars.
Thank you, Chris Merritt and Bookouture
About the author
Chris Merritt is a British author whose crime thrillers combine psychology, suspense, and characters you care about.
All his novels are set in London, where he lives. He began writing fiction in 2014, after previous careers as a diplomat, based in Iraq and Jerusalem, and later as a psychologist working with victims and perpetrators of crime. He specialised in treating Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), which sparked his interest in telling stories about how people cope when faced with extreme adversity.
Now he spends most of his time writing novels and drinking coffee while *thinking* about writing novels. When he’s not writing, he loves climbing and playing basketball.