Posted in Book Review, Books I have read

The Siren – Alison Bruce

Crime Fiction 3*s
Crime Fiction

Set in Cambridge this is the second book in the series that features the young DC Gary Goodhew who along with the team are under pressure when an arson attack is seemingly linked to a child abduction.

It is a long time since I read Cambridge Blue, the first in this series but powerful enough for me to remember the complex crime that showcased Alison Bruce’s accomplished writing with a good plot backed up with a detective in a newer mould than many we meet in police procedurals. The Siren is no different except that perhaps the why was somewhat elusive somewhat spoiling the many strands reaching back into the past that got us there.

We first meet Kimberly Guyver with her friend Rachel Golinski plotting her getaway following the discovery of a body of a man in Spain. Both women know that the trail will lead back to them and Kimberly has no choice but to leave Cambridge if she is to protect her young son .Riley. Within hours Rachel’s house is set alight and Riley is missing. Kimberly has problems with authority, we glean why from the parts of the book that detail her background but she grows to trust the young detective Gary Goodhew. As in the first book our detective is apt to follow leads without keeping his boss DI Marks in the loop. In common with many police procedurals there is a smattering of politics this after all is a team and not one man solving a crime by himself, and through these exchanges I found Goodhew is developing as a far more rounded character as are some of his team, which include the obligatory self-serving detective, in this case, Kincaid. Kincaid and Goodhew are reluctant partners being as they are polar opposites with Goodhew’s main motivation in life being to solve the crimes whilst being a bit of a failure in his personal life while Kincaid wants to further himself, relishing the failures in others but seemingly having no problems tempting the women around him.

I am glad I read Cambridge Blue first and really although I really enjoyed the writing in The Siren which is steadily placed and entertaining, unfortunately. I wasn’t as gripped by this one. I need to understand the motivation of the main characters particularly the perpetrator and while the clues fitted I didn’t feel that there was enough justification for the crimes committed. I also had a few problems with Kimberly, although I knew a lot about her, we were left to assume why she took some of the decisions she did on fairly unsubstantiated grounds – I know I often complain about being spoon-fed information in books but this one just went a little too far in the other direction.

The pacing which started on the slow side, this isn’t a book to open and expect wall-to-wall action, which is fine by me, steadily picked up and the tension was high as the search for reached crisis point, with some outstandingly good writing which really gave a sense of the emotions of everyone involved.

Not an outstanding all-round read but a book with sufficient good points for me to look forward to another in the series.

Posted in Weekly Posts

This Week In Books (January 13)

This Week In Books

Hosted by Lypsyy Lost & Found my Wednesday post gives you a taste of what I am reading this week. A similar meme is run by Taking on a World of Words

Alongside the TBR Reduction plan I am making an effort to read some of the older items that are lurking on it – these are usually in kindle format so I have started The Siren by Alison Bruce which was purchased on 29 July 2012 soon after I read the first in this series featuring DC Goodhew, Cambridge Blue. The choice was also prompted by the fact that I have the sixth in the series, The Promise, from NetGalley to read soon!

The Siren


All it took was one small item on the regional news for Kimberly Guyver and Rachel Golinski to know that their old life was catching up with them. They wondered how they’d been naïve enough to think it wouldn’t. They hoped they still had a chance to leave it behind – just one more time – but within hours, Rachel’s home is burning and Kimberly’s young son, Riley, is missing.
DC Goodhew begins to sift through their lives, and starts to uncover an unsettling picture of deceit, murder and accelerating danger. Kimberly seems distraught but also defensive and uncooperative. Is it fear and mistrust of the police which are putting her son at risk, or darker motivations?
With Riley’s life in peril, Goodhew needs Kimberly to make choices, but she has to understand, the one thing she cannot afford is another mistake. Amazon

So that’s the something old, now for the something new…

I have just finished The Things We Keep by Sally Hepworth

The Things We Keep

See yesterday’s post for the synopsis and a taster from this book

And next I’m going to read one from ‘I should have read this ages ago’ pile; Burial Rites by Hannah Kent

Buriel Rites


A brilliant literary debut, inspired by a true story: the final days of a young woman accused of murder in Iceland in 1829.
Set against Iceland’s stark landscape, Hannah Kent brings to vivid life the story of Agnes, who, charged with the brutal murder of her former master, is sent to an isolated farm to await execution.
Horrified at the prospect of housing a convicted murderer, the family at first avoids Agnes. Only Tóti, a priest Agnes has mysteriously chosen to be her spiritual guardian, seeks to understand her. But as Agnes’s death looms, the farmer’s wife and their daughters learn there is another side to the sensational story they’ve heard.
Riveting and rich with lyricism, BURIAL RITES evokes a dramatic existence in a distant time and place, and asks the question, how can one woman hope to endure when her life depends upon the stories told by others? Amazon

What are you reading this week? Please leave your links in the comments section below