Title: Murder in the Dark
Author: Betsy Reavley
Publication Date: 12 December 2018
Without a motive, how do you identify the killer?
Imagine a quaint little bookshop. Outside the snow is falling. Inside the shelves are stacked with books by authors waiting to be discovered. What could be better?
When Tilly Edgely lands a position working at Ashton’s bookshop in Cambridge she thinks she’s found her perfect job. But one winter’s morning, when she arrives to open up, she discovers the body of her boss suspended from the ceiling, hanging by a rope around his neck.
DCI Barrett and DI Palmer are called to the scene and quickly find themselves searching for a twisted killer whose identity and motive are nearly impossible to trace.
But just when they think they have the murderer in their sights, another body shows up throwing the case wide open…
Who is behind the killings and why?
The police have their work cut out and the key to unlocking the gruesome mystery might be found right under their nose.
But one thing is for certain, this killer will leave you hanging…
Matilda (Tilly) Edgely enjoys her job at Ashton’s Bookshop, at least she does until she finds her boss, Dennis, swinging from the rafters. Not a great start to the festive period! Fortunately DCI Barrett and DI Palmer are on the case, although with no apparent motive for the murder catching the killer might not be quite as straightforward as they would like.
Murder in the Dark
is set in a small snowy Cambridgeshire village. This rural setting works very well for this story, providing an enclosed community and a limited set of suspects for the police to question as they try to find links between Dennis Wade’s murder and other deaths in the surrounding area.
I enjoyed the characterisations within the book, particularly reading about the dynamics of the different relationships. The interactions amongst the investigating team are believable and the relationship between Dennis Wade’s wife, son and sister-in-law is fascinating. On a lighthearted note, I also enjoyed the scenes involving Tilly’s flatmate, Yuki, and her amusing way of phrasing things.
I initially thought the story would be a ‘cosy’ crime novel, however it veers more towards a police procedural as the story unfolds. Murder in the Dark has an engaging and well-paced plot that will keep the reader guessing until all the pieces of the puzzle are revealed – I have to admit that I didn’t guess who the killer was!
Murder in the Dark is a good solid crime novel. It’s entertaining and engaging,and one which I would recommend to fans of crime fiction, particularly those who may want to try something slightly grittier than a cosy crime novel. A great read for a dark winter’s night.
Whilst this is a sequel to Murder at the Bookshop, it is a standalone novel and can definitely be read as such.
About the Author
Betsy Freeman Reavley is the author of the novels Beneath the Watery Moon, Carrion, The Quiet Ones, The Optician’s Wife, Frailty, Pressure, Murder at the Book Club and the poetry collections The Worm in the Bottle and Shadows in the light.
She was born in Hammersmith, London. As a child she moved around frequently with her family, spending time in London, Provence, Tuscany, Gloucestershire and Cambridgeshire.
She showed a flair for literature and writing from a young age and had a particular interest in poetry, of which she was a prolific consumer and producer.
In her early twenties she moved to Oxford, where she would eventually meet her husband. During her time in Oxford her interests turned from poetry to novels and she began to develop her own unique style of psychological thriller.
Beneath the Watery Moon is Betsy Reavley’s beautifully written first release and tells the macabre story of a young woman battling against mental illness.
Beneath the Watery Moon is published by Not So Noble Books and Joffe Books. It is available as an eBook from Amazon.
Betsy Reavley’s second novel Carrion is a psychological chiller that address the link between grief and fear. Carrion was published in 2014 by Bloodhound Books.
The Quiet Ones, published in February 2016 and is a kindle top 100 bestseller, carries on Reavley’s tradition of writing psychological thrillers in her own unique way.
The Optician’s Wife, was released in June 2016 to critical acclaim.
Frailty is Reavley’s newest release and is available on amazon now.
Reavley says “I think people are at their most fascinating when they are faced with life’s real horrors. This is what I love to write about.”
Betsy Reavley currently lives in Cambridge, with her husband, 2 children, dog and quail. She is working on her fifth novel.
You can follow her on Twitter @BetsyReavley