Posted in Book Review, Books I have read, Mount TBR 2017

Cut Short – Leigh Russell

Crime Fiction
3*s

I know, I really don’t need to be starting any new crime series as the ones I have on the go, and try hard to keep up with already fill up a fair few slots on the trusty spreadsheet, but this book was already on my kindle having been purchased three years ago.

Now I’m going to be honest, I wasn’t too sure about Geraldine Steel’s debut outing at first but reminded myself that it is hard to introduce a whole new bunch of characters with enough of a back story to make it into a full series and the plot was definitely an intriguing one.

In Woolmarsh following the breakup of a relationship and she’s looking forward to a quieter life than that she left behind, but it isn’t to be. No sooner has she moved into a gated apartment than a killer strikes leaving behind a woman hidden in the park for a small child to find. Not a great way for Geraldine to start her new life! Partnered with the affable DS Ian Peterson the pair along with the rest of the team are under pressure to apprehend the strangler, particularly when it isn’t long before he strikes again.

There are several strands to the story with one pertaining to someone vandalising Geraldine’s personal property and another narrative from a clearly disturbed man who talks to a woman called Miss Elsie which kept my interest when the police investigation inevitably stalled. All too soon the press are asking questions about the competence of the officers in charge and women are protesting about their safety.

The fact that this series is soon going to be up to book number nine leads me to believe that the character development that perhaps this book would have benefited from, the author having favoured dastardly plotting, will soon be realised. It is all too easy for these police procedurals to feel like a rehash of something done before and yet I did feel that this showed a lot of promise. Yes, Geraldine was prone to going home and drinking wine, but hey, so I’m sure do lots of her readers and they don’t have to wonder which member of this small town out and about strangling people even while the police are on every corner! She isn’t too beset by personal problems although she has the odd reflective moment, but on the whole she uses the fact that she’s single with no personal claims on her time to work. We are told, that she uses her attention to detail and great memory to put together the clues and in this case, it works.

In the first paragraph I alluded to the wealth of characters in this book which can be tricky to manage and Leigh Russell gets over this by introducing them throughout the book as they are required, in many ways this book is almost written for TV which led to a disjointed feel in parts but there was also an awful lot that appealed and I certainly found myself racing towards the ending.

I read this book as part of my Mount TBR Challenge 2017 – this is number 7 out of my target of 36 for the year but… I must put the series books aside as I’m very tempted to buy Road Closed which sort of defeats the point of the challenge.

mount-tbr-2017

 

 

First Published UK: 2009
Publisher: No Exit Press
No of Pages:  435
Genre: Crime Fiction – Police Procedural
Amazon UK
Amazon US

 

Author:

A book lover who clearly has issues as obsessed with crime despite leading a respectable life

18 thoughts on “Cut Short – Leigh Russell

  1. I know just what you mean about starting a new series when there’s so much else to read. I’m the same way, Cleo. I’m glad you thought this series shows some promise, though. And I agree; it’s nice to have a protagonist who isn’t constantly haunted by personal demons.

  2. Even when I have discovered and read a couple of books into a new series, I find it difficult to move forward, with the competition of numerous books out there…and even some on my shelves. But this one does sound tempting. Thanks for sharing.

  3. If know what you mean about starting another series. I swear I should on,y be picking up standalones at the moment with so many series on the go.

    1. This is the first year I’ve really struggled with the number, especially with so many next books coming out in March and April that I really don’t want to miss but… I need to take control now – no more!

  4. I don’t tend to start a series from the beginning and then follow it religiously.
    I would much rather dip in and out of a series, but that does rather depend on whether the back-story is so strong that it needs to be read in sequence to succeed.
    To be honest, I do tend to stick to stand alones whenever possible, it causes much less conflict in my TBR pile!
    Thanks for sharing 🙂
    Yvonne

    1. I do a mixture of reading odd titles and following – if I happen to get in early I normally follow but I’m just as happy to read an odd one – but the problem is there are so many good books out there.

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