Today it is my review stop on the Blog Tour for BEST SERVED COLD. This is a new release to the Crime Fiction genre by Pat Adams-Wright and is the first in a stunning new series featuring a unique realistic lead detective: DCI Kirsty Savidge.
Best Served Cold (DCI Kirsty Savidge #1) by Pat Adams-Wright
Available from AMAZON
DCI Kirsty Savidge and her team (MCTF – Major Crimes Task Force) are tasked with solving the murder of Avril Webb, the third member of a vicious, bullying school gang from twenty-five years ago, to be killed in a matter of weeks. Although two previous deaths are brought to her attention by pathologist Dr Benedict Aldredge (Benny), they have been ruled a drowning and a gang-related murder in another district. Once Kirsty is aware of them, her detective instincts begin to kick-in, but because of the different Modi Operandi, she’s not sure she’ll be able to convince her superior Chief Superintendent Alison Fry, of a connection. The two women have history and cooperation is rarely a given. However, during the interviews into Avril’s death the remaining members of the gang are adamant about a link between the deaths and press Kirsty to investigate further. This gives Kirsty a legitimate reason to ask for the other two cases to be reviewed although none of those in the higher echelons would want to hear the term ‘serial killer’.
Another murder occurs quite soon, again with a different MO. At the same time, Kirsty becomes aware she’s had an intruder in her home, but she and DS Danny Hewitt decide to put off any investigation until the current case is finished. Also, Chief Superintendent Fry appears to be having some personal problems when Kirsty spots her wrist wrapped in bandages and bruising on her neck. The inclement weather is also having an effect on the investigation, as some people are having to work from home, including Savidge and Fry, who finds herself stranded at Kirsty’s cottage because of the heavy snowfall. Fry brought news Kirsty could proceed with linking all the cases. Members of the now covert group (nobody is aware in the present that these people are still linked and running false businesses for their leader, Chris Shaw), are now beginning to take care of their own security turning down protective custody. The police become suspicious.
Throughout, there is a running commentary from the murderer, about his methods and reasoning. Kirsty has her suspicions and is convinced one of the gang members is carrying out the murders. Only when information from those badly bullied at school does the method of the killings fall into place. Background information on two of suspects is proving illusive. A failed copy-cat attack narrows Kirsty’s choice to one and covert surveillance is set-up. At the time of Avril’s funeral the next day, it’s revealed the man watching the suspect has been murdered and the suspect has disappeared. He’s gone to Plan B – murdering the rest of the gang at the funeral. He kills two more using sniper-fire, then escapes. At the airport he is apprehended and held at gunpoint by two armed response officers, but is then shot himself when one officer mistakes a remote-control for the handle of a gun. The suspect’s lap-top reveals all, in the form of two books so all questions can be answered at a meal supplied by the Chief Superintendent. At the end of the book we are left wondering whose Kirsty’s intruder was and also who had leaked information to allow a copy-cat attack.
This is a very gripping book on many levels. If you like detective books then you will love this one it gets into the nitty gritty of detective where there are no clues and the only way to make any progress is to keep trawling through paperwork looking for anything that may have been missed. This makes for a very interesting book. It may not be as fast paced at some but certainly kept the pages turning as I became totally engrossed in the story.
The balance of description and investigation is perfect there is enough well written description for the reader to envisage the scene but not enough to be ‘padding’.
Kirsty Savidge is DCI but is a very hands on one who likes to be out and about with her team. Her superior is Alison and we soon learn the two women have history. If I have a minor gripe it is that I would have liked some answers to questions about the two but hopefully there will be more to learn in future books.
I love the characters they are realistic and develop their unique characters well over the course of the book. I particularly liked the way Kirsty encouraged Paul and gave him the opportunity to show his initiative and play an active part in the investigation despite him not being a permanent member of the team.
The story itself is very different as the investigation progresses the reader learns about the background to the murders which goes back to events over 20 years ago which makes the investigating even more difficult but it all works perfectly as the different strands eventually link together and the reader is taken on a twisty turny ride to the end of the story with many shocks along the way.
An excellent read and well worth the 5 stars.
Thank you to the author for the ARC this is my unbiased review
Pat Adams-Wright Author Bio
Pat Adams-Wright was born in Halifax, West Yorkshire, UK, on the 15th October 1954, in Wellesley Barracks, to a sergeant major father and a working mother. Teacher trained in Liverpool, she actually taught very little during the austere period for practical subjects, doing any work she could find to keep the wolf from the door. However, this did provide plenty of experience and writing material. Finally settled into a teaching job, disaster struck after an accident left her disabled. After many years of using writing to distract her from pain, she successfully completed her debut novel, Run, which was published on the 18th April, 2015.