Published by: Killer Reads (24th August 2018)
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?
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.
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Punishment is a run-of-the-mill thriller starring a run-of-the-mill detective trying to catch a run-of-the-mill serial killer. Of course the serial killer leaves clues behind, of course he wants to be caught, and of course the case is soon becoming personal for our detective.
The best thing about this book, apart from the really beautiful cover, was the sci-fi element: cops use machines to extract memories from victims of crime, including murder victims, in a hope to catch a glimpse of the perpetrators. The same memories are later used as punishment for perps - hence the title. The idea is not exactly new, but it's well executed. Cops like our main character Barnes have to live through the memories of murder victims again and again, and it does a number on them. And the author actually makes good use of the setting of Detroit.
It was entertaining enough, but I don't think I will read the sequel. Except that one has a nice cover, too. Well, maybe next summer, when I'm craving the cheap thrills again.