I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Whispers In The Dark by Chris McDonald
Published by RED DOG Press on 14 November 2020
Genres: Crime, British Crime, Women Sleuths
Format: eBook, ARC
Buy on Amazon
Who will heed the call when Death comes whispering?
Small time drug dealer, Marcus Stone and DCI Clive Burston had never met until one night in August. By the end of that night, both had been shot dead in a small bedroom in the heart of gang territory.
DI Erika Piper is called to the scene but is at a loss to explain what’s happened. How did these two even meet, let alone end up dead in what appears to be a strange murder-suicide?
As Erika leads the investigation, another two bodies are found, killed in a similar fashion. One murder, one suicide. But who is controlling this macarbre puppet show?
As Erika delves deeper into the lives of the dead, the pieces begin to fit together and a number of nefarious characters crawl out of the woodwork – one of whom is almost certainly pulling the strings.
A catastrophic event and a personal miracle threaten to derail the investigation. Erika must find the strength to continue, before the whispers catch up with her too…
If you are looking for a light-hearted read, it’s probably best to find something other than Whispers in The Dark. If you are looking for something outstandingly dark, raw and visceral, then you have most definitely come to the right place. A story that drips with revenge, guilt and a strong female character that isn’t afraid to go for the jugular.
The story instantly pulled me in with its dark prologue. A pulsing beat that threatened to crack and spill its guts for the reader to witness, to experience. It was intoxicating. The scene is set and once again Chris McDonald nails the shocking prologues.
We are reintroduced to the superb cast of characters that we met in A Wash of Black. We have references to the first book and the characterisation is stronger. Whispers in The Dark allows us to find out more about DI Erika Piper, she’s a strong female but McDonald peels back the layers and we see the tough outer shell fall away and we see the soft centre, her vulnerability somehow makes her stronger, more relatable. It’s almost like the reader is finally beginning to really see her, and its magnificent. She’s an exquisitely crafted character.
Whispers in The Dark is a rollercoaster through the dark streets of Manchester. The action was jet propelled and it often felt like a free fall into the guts of hell! I love quick-paced action in my crime novels and the author doesn’t shy back from delivering it tenfold! I was sitting on the edge of my seat, wiping sweat from my brow. It was that intense. The author tackles some hard-hitting themes and the amount of research that the author would have conducted shone through. The sharp prose made these themes palatable, events that we could only imagine.
Chris McDonald has crafted Whispers in The Dark magnificently. If we thought that he couldn’t top A Wash of Black, we were pleasantly surprised. He’s brought it to the table and has earned his place beside some of the greatest in British Crime, Rankin and Brookmyre. He has honed his craft to such an extent that we can imagine these vivid images, like looking into a still lake and see the depths beneath. McDonald has a raw talent for chilling his readers to the bone.
Whispers in The Dark is addictive. Be prepared to share joy in connections, pain at misdirection and anger at the atrocities being committed. I look forward to seeing what else McDonald can pull out of his writing bag of tricks!
ABOUT CHRIS MCDONALD
Originally hailing from the north coast of Northern Ireland and now residing in South Manchester, Chris McDonald has always been a reader. At primary school, The Hardy Boys inspired his love of adventure before his reading world was opened up by Chuck Palahniuk and the gritty world of crime. A Wash of Black is his first attempt at writing a book. He came up with the initial idea whilst feeding his baby in the middle of the night, which may not be the best thing to admit, considering the content. He is a fan of 5-a-side football, heavy metal and dogs. Whispers in the Dark is the second installment in the DI Erika Piper series, and Chris is currently working on his latest series, The Stonebridge Mysteries, to be published by Red Dog Press in 2021.