Dead Flowers

Nicola Monaghan

Dead Flowers

Nicola Monaghan

She doesn’t trust the police. She used to be one of them.
Hardened by ten years on the murder squad, DNA analyst Doctor Sian Love has seen it all. So when she finds human remains in the basement of her new home, she knows the drill.
Except this time it’s different. This time, it’s personal…

British crime books set in regional England. Scotland and Wales are fast becoming one of my favourite genres. This year has been an especially good crop for me. Books by Elly Griffiths, Peter James and MW Craven show how strong the field is. Each has it’s own twist, something to raise it above the ordinary. In Dead Flowers case it’s the protagonist is a forensic scientist who left the police and inherits a pub in the back streets of Nottingham.

Not knowing the author or the city of Nottingham I started this book expecting the usual sort of story, but after a few chapters I realised it wasn’t a run of the mill story. Told in two timelines fifty years apart the plot comes to life as you try to second guess the author into guessing what had happened all those years ago. The two tales being wrapped around each other at a blistering pace.

The characters are fully formed, you get to know slowly their various intricacies, their likes and sometimes their dark sides. Sian, with her grudges against the police, is the ideal protagonist as she tries to find out who the two bodies are that are buried in the cellar. When it all becomes clear, Sian’s life is turned upside down with an explosive ending I really didn’t see coming.

This book really kept me guessing as to what had happened and what was bout to happen. The dual timelines worked really well as we flitted back to the sixties and then whizzing back to the present. The musical background of the sixties added to the enjoyment (I presume the title was after the Rolling Stones song). The ending as I say is well worth waiting for, leaving open a prospect of a sequel. One I’ll wait for with delight.

So all in all, a great new addition to the genre. A book that was breathtaking to read.

This ARC book was sent for a fair and honest review by the author via NetGallery  . The resulting review is my honest thoughts after reading the book.

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