Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT DCI Jones Casebook: CRYER’S VIEW by @KerryJDonovan #Crime @CathyRy

Today’s team review is from Cathy, she blogs at http://betweenthelinesbookblog.wordpress.com/

#RBRT Review Team

Cathy has been reading DCI Jones Casebook: Cryer’s View by Kerry J Donovan

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Detective Sergeant Phil Cryer is recuperating from a serious knee injury sustained in a rooftop chase during a previous investigation. He’s feeling frustrated and helpless at being on sick leave, so when he has a visit from Chief Superintendent Knightly from the National Crime Agency who has reasons to suspect corruption, Cryer jumps at the chance to go undercover.

When Detective Sergeant Richie Juno is killed in a hit and run while tailing a suspect, just after he arranged to meet with CS Knightly on an urgent matter, questions are raised. Was DS Juno targeted and murdered and, if so, why? Unable to place his trust with anyone in the NCA until the double-dealing is exposed, Knightly contacts his old friend DCI David Jones, Cryer’s boss. Jones believes Phil Cryer has the perfect talents for undercover work – incredible IT skills and an eidetic memory.

This is number four in the DCI Jones series and an excellent addition. The story begins in the third person with Ritchie Juno, then moves to the first person from Phil’s perspective as he takes centre stage. The covert operation gets off to a bad start with an antagonistic attitude directed at Phil from one of the members of the NCA team. Added to that he has to downplay his skills while keeping his cover intact. With no immediate back up, Phil faces a difficult and dangerous task.

I’ve enjoyed all the books in the DCI Jones series and this is no exception. The story unfolds with a timeline heading each chapter, giving an awareness of the increasing tension and suspense. Kerry Donovan creates a very credible and convincing picture of the procedures within a specialist police unit.

I liked Phil Cryer from the start and enjoyed getting to know him, and David Jones, more. It’s a refreshing change to have a well-adjusted, easy-going and easy to relate to family man as the protagonist. And one who is able to voice his feelings, whether they are for his wife and children, or apprehension and concerns about the situation he’s in. He and DCI Jones compliment each other, both are engaging in their own ways and are developed skilfully, creating an attachment with this reader. I also very much enjoyed the addition of the ‘villain’ from the first book.

The storyline is written and structured extremely well, character driven with lots of action offset by Phil’s surreptitious desk investigations into the team members using his formidable skills via the internet. The explosive culmination was a complete surprise. A really strong addition to the series.

Book Description

The explosive fourth instalment in the DCI Jones Casebook series of crime thrillers—this is CRYER’S VIEW. 

For more than five years police operations in the southeast of England have been failing. Chief Superintendent Knightly, a senior member of the National Crime Agency, suspects that someone is selling police intelligence. When one of his junior officers dies before he can attend clandestine meeting with him, Knightly is certain—there’s a dirty cop inside his organisation.
Unable to trust anyone under his command, Knightly turns to an old friend for help—Detective Chief Inspector David Jones.
When Detective Sergeant Phil Cryer, answers his doorbell to find CS Knightly and DCI Jones on his doorstep, he knows things are about to get interesting—and dangerous. 
Phil Cryer, on sick leave after suffering an injury in the line of duty, soon finds himself deep undercover inside the NCA hunting the dirty cop, codename Alpine. He faces his most difficult and dangerous assignment. 
Alone, injured, and armed only with his phenomenal memory, Phil must identify the rogue cop before he escapes … or kills again. 

About the author

Kerry J. Donovan

Internationally bestselling fiction author, Kerry was born in Dublin. He spent most of his life in the UK, and now lives in the heart of rural Brittany with his wonderful and patient wife, Jan. They have three children and four grandchildren (so far), all of whom live in England. An absentee granddad, Kerry is hugely thankful for the advent of video calling.

The cottage is a pet free zone (apart from the field mice, moles, and red squirrels).

Kerry earned a first class honours degree in Human Biology, and has a PhD in Sport and Exercise Sciences. A former scientific advisor to The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, he helped UK emergency first-responders prepare for chemical attacks in the wake of 9/11. This background adds a scientific edge to his writing. He is also a former furniture designer/maker.

Goodreads | AmazonUK | AmazonUS | Twitter

Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT WHO KILLED VIVIEN MORSE? by @DianaJFebry #Mystery

Today’s team review is from Noelle, she blogs here http://saylingaway.wordpress.com

#RBRT Review Team

Noelle has been reading Who Killed Vivien Morse? by Diana J Febry

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Who Killed Vivien Morse? is the fourth book in the DCI Peter Hatherall series. I haven’t read the other three, but the author has done a great job making this a stand-alone book.

This is what I would call a traditional English mystery. It opens with a complaint to the nattily dressed DCI Hatherall by a neighborhood busybody, who reports seeing a man looking like a Druid and accompanied by a dog peeking into the windows of houses in her neighborhood. Hatherall’s interaction with her is humorous but is quickly leavened by the discovery of a young social worker, the Vivien Morse of the title, battered to death in a local wood.

The reader is quickly introduced to the main players in the action: Hatherall’s partner, Fiona; Ellen, a disturbed, strange young woman who was Vivien’s last client contact; Nigel Morse, Vivian’s husband – a prime suspect but with an alibi; Jane Salt, Vivien’s boss, with whom Vivien has publicly argued; Lucy and Ian, Ellen’s parents, whose marital relationship is strained, and Kathy, Ellen’s aunt.

We learn that Ellen’s problems date from being run down by her boyfriend, Robbie Creer, who is serving time in prison for fraud. Creer is discovered to have links to each of these characters as the yarn unwinds, including Dick Death (pronounced Deeath), the hulking, sandal-wearing Druid-like man. I enjoyed the characters, although Dick Death, and his new, elderly girlfriend, Gladys, rather overpowered everyone else. Ellen, with clear mental issues, also stands out, with her occasional violent episodes and her attachment to a ragged doll she calls ‘Future,’ a replacement for Robbie’s baby which she lost in the accident.

There are a number of McGuffins cleverly placed to lead the reader, Hatherall and Fiona down various paths before the main path to the solution is discovered. The story is complex and the reader needs to pay close attention to figure out whodunit.

I loved the light humor of various parts of the book. What did become somewhat tedious after a while were the long, long dialogues between Peter and Fiona, not quite the give-and-take of real conversation. Nevertheless, the characters were human, with all the normal warts and foibles.

Four stars

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

Rosie’s Team #RBRT THE DCI JONES CASEBOOK: ELLIS FLYNN by @KerryJDonovan #Crime #TuesdayBookBlog

Today’s second team review is from Cathy, she blogs here http://betweenthelinesbookblog.com

#RBRT Review Team

Cathy has been reading The DCI Jones Casebook: Ellis Flynn by Kerry Donovan

The DCI Jones Casebook: Ellis Flynn by [Donovan, Kerry J]

Another excellent instalment in the DCI Jones Casebook series. When young Hollie Jardine goes missing DCI David Jones, head of the Midlands Police Serious Crime Unit, is on the case along with his partner DC Alexandra Olganski. Jones is near to retirement, but his determination to find Hollie is absolute, although he finds missing child cases very difficult. His friend and colleague, Phil Cryer, has a daughter who could look just like Hollie when she reached her teens and that makes the case hit home even more so.

Luckily CCTV caught some footage and he and Alex risk more than their jobs when they follow Hollie’s trail over the channel. What they discover there defies description. Both their lives will be affected.

Hollie has been groomed and persuaded to go away for a holiday by the loathsome Ellis Flynn. When Hollie arrives to meet Flynn and sees another man with him she becomes suspicious, having second thoughts, and is taken by force. From the start the indication is there’s a paedophile ring at work. These characters are portrayed brilliantly, even though they’re hateful, and the beginning of the story, coming from Flynn’s point of view is chilling. More so because it’s a scenario that could be all too real.

The procedural was fascinating to follow and David Jones is a compassionate and very likeable protagonist, regardless of his almost OCD tendencies. He hates mess anywhere but most especially in his own space. A sad past is hinted at and with his time as a father cut cruelly short, he has a solitary air, although certain of his colleagues are good friends. Kerry Donovan has given a good balance between the logistics of working the case and the individuals’ thoughts and feelings. It’s a multilayered story with a great cast of characters. I really enjoyed the interaction and working relationship between Jones and his French counterpart, Colonel Jean-Luc Coué, a great character. Both of them are firmly on the same page regarding the abduction, and worse, of young girls and the way the offenders should be dealt with.

This is a compelling and tension filled read, the timelines at the beginning of each chapter adding to the ‘race against time’ feel of the storyline. Just when it looks like the case is almost wrapped up, the plot escalates again with a completely unexpected twist. Then again, when it seems like everything has been in vain, another surprise. There’s one question left unanswered for which I have my own, hopefully right, guess. I’ll have to wait and see!

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com