Good morning, bookworm, do come in. Can I get you some hot toast with butter on? The dragons have been a little overactive with spring being in the air so I set them the task of toasting my bread. With any luck, they’ll wear themselves out while we sit and have a catch up.
So, tell me about the last book you read… Mm hmm… Aaah… And then what happened…? Really…? That sounds interesting, I’ll look out for it. I’ve been itching to talk to you about my latest read, a crime thriller called Horsey Mere by David Blake. Have you heard of it? Have a cup of tea to go with your toast while I tell you all about it.
First, here’s the blurb: The remains of a 17th Century witch, an MP found hanging above a five-pointed star, and three girls with powers beyond anyone’s control.
As DI Tanner and DS Evans endeavour to make plans for their big day, the chance discovery of Norfolk’s last known witch, tried and hanged by Norfolk’s infamous Witchfinder General, sparks a chain of the most horrific events, none of which Tanner seems able to stop.
Next, here’s a little about the author: Consistently ranked amongst the top 30 most read authors on Amazon.co.uk, David Blake is a full time author living in North London. To date he has written eighteen books along with a collection of short stories. He’s currently working on his nineteenth, The Wherryman, which is the next in his series of crime fiction thrillers after Broadland, St. Benet’s, Moorings, Three Rivers and Horsey Mere. When not writing, David likes to spend his time kicking about in boats, often in the Norfolk Broads, where his crime fiction books are based.
And here’s my review: Wow. WOW! I try and allow myself at least 10 days to read a book for a blog tour in case life gets in the way or it takes a while to grab my attention. I read this in two evenings and would have finished it in one only for my eyes not willing to stay open past 1am (lightweights!). I was enthralled from the first page and as a lifelong lover of crime fiction, that doesn’t often happen since the many stories and series can blur together. The rounded characters and rich storyline made this novel stand out head and shoulders above its peers.
This is the fifth book in the series and that always makes me a little nervous before reading in case I don’t relate to the characters as well as I might have done had I know their back story, or miss out on the longer narrative arcs. I may not have seen how DI Tanner and DS Evans’ romance blossomed but I felt their love and respect for one another, so I don’t feel I missed out.
One of my favourites aspects of Horsey Mere was the dialogue between DCI Forrester and DI Tanner. I chuckled out loud repeatedly at DI Tanner’s sarcasm and deliberate obtuseness when his superior officer was quizzing him on the investigation. But there was also mutual respect and a degree of caring too. This became clear as the investigation began hotting up, with other crimes becoming entangled like the roots the skeletal remains of the witch were found amongst.
As for the witch plot line , I enjoyed the details of historical and modern witchcraft which helped to build the motive and mystery of the book. The idea of people fearful of curses and spells was fascinating to me having grown up in an island steeped in legends and folktales of witchery.
The action was fast paced and believable, the suspects shady and manipulative. My only regret is not requesting to review The Wherryman too as I’ve been left desperate to read more after the shocking finale. After catching my breath, I immediately downloaded Broadland so I can start DI Tanner’s journey from the beginning. I think I’ve found my new favourite crime series and I’m hooked. An easy 5 out of 5 stars for this one!
If you like the sound of this novel, click on the book image to go to the relevant page on Amazon. I don’t receive anything for providing the links, I’m just being a helpful bookworm.
Well, bookworm, since you’ve finished your toast, I must take the dragons out to stretch their wings while they’ll still be hidden by the morning mists. It might help the various dragon hunting books amongst my Fantasy bookshelves settle down and stop distracting The Classics, who are trying to enjoy a civilised game of croquet. Until next time, bookworm, farewell!