A knife dripping with blood isn't the sort of book cover that draws me in, but I had this title suggested to me and I am always keen to trying something new. While there were elements of this book that I found very unsettling and disturbing, it was incredibly readable, and I found that I rattled through it in no time!
It was gruesome and violent from the outset as we were introduced to the central character, a female police detective who realised that she knew the killer she was pursuing just as he came back to murder her. She survived, but at what cost...
Flash forward to the present and we find that she has had to leave her career in the force. Her personal life is far from easy.
She now works as a lecturer in cold cases at a university and is approached by a grieving couple who want to know what happened to their daughter who went missing years previously. Her disappearance was similar to that of other victims of the Nine Elms murderer. As Kate decides to investigate, other girls are killed in what seem to be copycat murders.
The killings are horrific involving torture and cannibalism, and all the victims are female. The reader is given an insight to the mind of the potential perpetrator/s and this is all very disturbing. I felt very uncomfortable with these elements of the book. It didn't feel right to be reading this for 'entertainment' or diversion.
However, the pace of the book is perfectly pitched and the characters are vivid and engaging. I enjoyed reading about Kate and Tristan and will be interested to see what cases they move on to in subsequent books!