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review 2019-01-05 02:05
Review: The Fallen (DCI Matilda Darke short story) by Michael Wood
The Fallen - Michael Wood

Published by: Killer Reads (23rd December 2016)

 

Source: purchased

 

Rating: 5*

 

Synopsis: 

A man has been found brutally murdered in his own home. The victim is Iain Kilbride, a once-famous TV star who has faded into obscurity. All signs point to a break-in, but why has nothing been taken?

For DCI Matilda Darke, this is the perfect chance to prove her newly formed Murder Investigation Team are up to the task. Matilda suspects the clue to finding the killer lies in Iain’s past, but she’s about to discover how dark that past really is…

 

Review:

I came across this prequel to the DCI Matilda Darke series a little late, but absolutely relished reading about the initial setting up of the MIT and about Matilda's first faltering steps as she returns to work as a newly appointed DCI. Seeing Matilda's historic exchanges with familiar characters such as the irrepressible Ben Hales is an added bonus, and getting to peek inside her relationship with husband James is insightful.

 

Although this is a short story, nothing feels rushed. The pace is steady and the story and characters have time to unfurl in an unhurried manner.  The case itself is utterly gripping and cleverly written with the author's usual incredible attention to detail. I completely forgot I was even reading a short story!

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review 2018-08-25 08:00
BLOG TOUR Review: The Hangman's Hold (DCI Matilda Darke #4) by Michael Wood
The Hangman's Hold - Michael Wood

ISBN: 978-0008311629

 

Published by: Killer Reads (24th August 2018)

 

Rating: 5*

 

Synopsis:

 

There’s a killer in your house.
The Hangman waits in the darkness of your living room. As soon as you get home, he will kill you – hang you by the neck – and make you pay for all the crimes you have tried desperately to forget.

 

He knows your darkest secrets.
The police are running out of time. DCI Matilda Darke is facing her worst nightmare: a serial killer pursuing his own brand of lethal justice, whose campaign of violence is spreading fear throughout the city.

 

And he is closer than you think.
As the body count rises, Matilda is personally targeted and even her most trusted colleagues fall under suspicion. But can she keep those closest to her from harm? Or is it already too late?

 

Review:

DCI Matilda Darke is such a beautifully written character. She's strong - capable of barking out orders with a ferocity that demands results, yet has a beguiling fragility as a result of the most unimaginable emotional trauma. In The Hangman's Hold, Matilda faces losing her very sanity as she and her team hunt down a vigilante serial killer who has decided to take matters into their own hands. 

 

This is an intriguing book that grabbed my attention from the outset. The Hangman character is utterly creepy and made me feel uneasy enough to look over my shoulder as I read, but at the same time I felt compelled to keep reading to find out what they would do next! There are many personal and professional relationships within the police team that get tested to the max when the elusive killer seems to be out of their grasp. With more twists and turns than a hangman's noose, this novel also really made me think. When is a crime paid for? 

 

Michael Wood has managed to squeeze all the elements needed for a brilliant crime novel into a truly engrossing read. DCI Matilda Darke is fast becoming one of my favourite characters because she is just so real. I'd like to thank the author, Harper Impulse, Killer Reads and Netgalley for providing an ARC. This is my unbiased review. 

 

Catch the rest of the blog tour with these fabulous bloggers here: -

 

 

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review 2018-01-06 01:09
Review: For Reasons Unknown by Michael Wood
For Reasons Unknown - Michael Wood

Published by: Killer Reads (5th November 2015)

 

ISBN: 978-0008158675

 

Source: Purchased

 

Rating: 5*

 

Synopsis:

DCI Matilda Darke has returned to work after a nine month absence. A shadow of her former self, she is tasked with re-opening a cold case: the terrifyingly brutal murders of Miranda and Stefan Harkness. The only witness was their eleven-year-old son, Jonathan, who was too deeply traumatized to speak a word.

Then a dead body is discovered, and the investigation leads back to Matilda's case. Suddenly the past and present converge, and it seems a killer may have come back for more…

 

Review:

For Reasons Unknown has been languishing on my TBR for far too long, so I've started the year as I mean to go on, and what a cracking start! This is crime writing at its very best and I'm seriously impressed. The plot had me on the edge of my seat, it's full of twists and turns that I didn't see coming, the characters are great...DCI Matilda Darke is brilliant! The ending had me actually shouting 'Noooo!' at my kindle!

 

DCI Matilda Darke is a fantastic character. She's a little broken, but there's a glimpse of fighting spirit underneath, which I'm looking forward to seeing more of in subsequent books. There's lots of interaction with her colleagues too, which I really enjoyed, so I hope to see some of those again too. 

 

The author has an easy way of drawing you in and keeping you interested in the story throughout. His intelligent writing style and great use of detail really made the story come alive. I thoroughly enjoyed it and highly recommend it to all readers of crime and psychological thrillers and police procedurals.

 

 

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text 2018-01-03 17:22
Reading progress update: I've read 65%.
For Reasons Unknown - Michael Wood
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review 2017-10-22 17:32
A Room Full of Killers by Michael Wood
A Room Full of Killers: A gripping crime thriller with twists you won’t see coming (DCI Matilda Darke Series, Book 3) - Michael Wood

The third book in Michael Wood’s darkly compelling crime series featuring DCI Matilda Darke. Perfect for fans of Stuart MacBride, Mark Billingham and Val McDermid.

Eight killers. One house. And the almost perfect murder…

Feared by the people of Sheffield, Starling House is home to some of Britain’s deadliest teenagers, still too young for prison. Now the building’s latest arrival, Ryan Asher, has been found brutally murdered – stabbed twelve times, left in a pool of blood.

When DCI Matilda Darke and her team investigate, they uncover the secrets of a house tainted by evil. Kate Moloney, the prison’s manager, is falling apart, the security system has been sabotaged, and neither the staff nor the inmates can be trusted.

There’s only one person Matilda believes is innocent, and he’s facing prison for the rest of his life. With time running out, she must solve the unsolvable to save a young man from his fate. And find a murderer in a house full of killers…

 
**********
 

I thought before I read this book that I was quite hardened when it came to crime novel that I could deal with quite a lot (except harming of animals and children), but there were really tough parts in this book that was hard for me to get through and that were the chapters that were the POV of the children, the murderers.

A Room Full of Killers is a dark and tragic book that I devoured. It's engrossing, but at the same time is it not an easy book to get through. DCI Matilda Darke has a lot on her plate, with the release of a book concerning a kidnap case that she was in charge of that went wrong. Also, she is still not completely over her husband's death 18 months earlier. And, now this case at the Starling House. A teenager is dead, and who could have done it? The question of why someone murdered him is perhaps not hard to understand since Ryan Asher is a convicted murderer, but someone got him out of a locked room. Matilda then meets one of the inmates, Thomas, and Matilda is convinced that the young boy is innocent of the crime he is said to have done. Now she wants to find Ryan's murdered and at the same time is she trying to get Thomas free.

I found the book thrilling and intense and the last part of the book had some really great twist to the story. I was a bit surprised on how Matilda could believe someone to be innocent by just looking at him. I mean quite literary just instantly believe his innocent without knowing much about the case. I'm not a police, but appearance can be deceiving, but I guess I much more cynical. Still, it added drama to the story. The side story with the kidnap case was also interesting and I'm really curious to see the impact it will have in the next book. If the kidnapping will be solved. I'm also quite eager to get the two previous books to read!

A Room Full of Killers is an excellent thriller. The characters are well-developed and interesting to follow and the case is interesting and I love the ending!

 
I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through NetGalley for an honest review! 
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