Kill Our Sins by JM Dalgliesh

Kill Our Sins by JM Dalgliesh
Publisher: Hamilton Press
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery/Suspense/Thriller
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Fern

What would you do to keep your past a secret?

When the mutilated remains of a woman are retrieved by local fisherman, it falls to DI Tom Janssen and his team to identify how she came to be in the water and what put her there. Joined on the case by his new permanent boss, DCI Tamara Greave, it remains to be proven if the woman’s death was a result of foul play or a tragic accident.

The victim carried no means of identification, was poorly dressed for the winter and horribly disfigured when pulled from the water. As the case progresses old ghosts return to haunt those living in the present. Matters thought settled a long time ago face intense scrutiny… attention that some hoped would never come to pass. When childhood friends begin to question one another, suddenly the long forgotten past comes to the fore.

The misadventure of youth can have grave consequences. No matter how much time passes nor how deep you bury them, your sins will always return to haunt you. But who has the most to lose and what else are they willing to sacrifice in order to keep what they have? Is someone prepared to kill for their sins?

Janssen must reveal and catch a killer without a conscience before they strike again…

Set within the mysterious beauty of coastal Norfolk, this fast-paced British detective novel is a dark murder mystery with moments of humour, one that will keep you guessing until the very end when the final shocking twist is revealed.

This is the third book in the “Hidden Norfolk” series featuring DI Tom Janssen and DCI Tamara Greave and I found it to be a solid addition. I was very pleased not just with the plot of the mystery itself, but that this time I felt there was significant growth in Tom’s character. We learn a bit about his past, and there was a good amount of time spent showing the conflict and growth in Tom’s personal relationship with his girlfriend. I thought the author did an excellent job balancing these two critical aspects to the book – the mystery plot and the more personal aspects to the story as a greater whole. The book not only felt well balanced but as a result very satisfying. There was a well-woven, interesting and well paced murder mystery plot, but this is the first book where I felt genuinely interested and pleased with Tom’s character and the growth/revelations that were shown to me as the reader. I thoroughly enjoyed this.

The mystery was one I personally found quite interesting – the murder of a woman with deep secrets hidden in her past and a delightfully complicated history. While in many ways a standard British style of police procedural plot, I thought there were enough turns in the storyline and plenty of depth to the mystery of the victim to easily keep my attention. I found the working relationship between Tom and Tamara to be a little easier and smoother in this book – the previous book in the series in particular I had a lot of trouble with the fluctuating emotions and mixed signals, so I was really pleased to find this had all seemed to sort itself out.

While I do feel readers can pick up this book and enjoy reading it as a stand alone story, there are two previous installments in the series. I feel readers will find a deeper appreciation for the working cohesion between the police team unit if they’ve read the two prior stories, though this isn’t strictly necessary. The plot and the personal relationship between Tom and his girlfriend stand very well on their own in this book – and while I had no problems sorting through the characters of the small police unit, I do feel readers will gain a deeper appreciation for their working relationship with the background in the previous stories.

An excellent read, this British police procedural style story is a good book with complex characters, a delightfully twisting plot and plenty of personal growth in the characters. Recommended.

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.