IT’S NOT LIFE THAT IMITATES ART. IT’S DEATH.
Anna Symons. Famous. Talented. Dead.
When the body of a famous actress is found mutilated on an ice rink in Manchester, recreating a scene from a blockbuster film she starred in years ago, DI Erika Piper must find the culprit; the media-dubbed ‘Blood Ice Killer.’
Having recently returned to work after suffering a near fatal attack herself, she must once again prove her worth. But when another body is found, and the killer issues a personal threat, Erika must put her demons aside and crack the case, or suffer the deadly consequences.
Hi and welcome to my review of A Wash of Black! Many thanks to Red Dog Press for the eBook, and happy publication day to Chris McDonald!!
Reading and reviewing a book written by someone you know, even if it is only from Twitter and their blog, is always just a little bit more stressful than reading and reviewing any other book. I mean, I knew how much this book means to Chris and so I really wanted to like it, and preferably even love it. Now, I’ve always loved his reviews, and obviously I trust the bookish tastes of Red Dog Press, what with their Soho Noir series, the Mydworth Mysteries series and Stay Mad, Sweetheart, all solid 4 to 5 stars reads, so of course I was jumping up and down excitedly when I got the tour invitation and I couldn’t wait to go in! Still, for the abovementioned reasons I went in with a little trepidation. I got as far as the end of the prologue (and it’s a really short prologue) and I knew I’d be golden! I’ve been feeling quite moody as a reader lately, a book needs to grab me right from the start or I start frowning at it and sulking, and wondering if the grass might not be greener on the other side, but grab me A Wash of Black most definitely did. I blinked and found myself halfway through, if that isn’t a sign of bookish brilliance, I don’t know what is!
A Wash of Black kicks off with a bloodbath and a killer who is convinced that they have not committed murder, but created art. Sure… *backs away slowly and breaks into a run* As it turns out, the murder victim is an actress and the murder scene is a recreation of one of her movie scenes. Who would commit such a heinous crime, and why? It’s up to DI Erika Piper to find out, but she might not be up to the task, having just returned to the force after a long recovery following a vicious attack and seemingly still suffering from PTSD.
A Wash of Black is such a fun quick read, I absolutely flew through it. Despite its limited number of pages (my e-copy knocks off at 208), it’s a well-rounded story with fleshed-out characters. It has everything you need from a crime thriller / police procedural: intrigue and mystery, gruesome crimes, multiple suspects to muddy the waters, and a kick-ass yet vulnerable heroine.
As far as debuts go, this is definitely an impressive one, and I think that Chris McDonald is at the start of a very promising new career! I for one am eager to find out what troubles might await Erika Piper in the next instalment. If A Wash of Black is anything to go by, 2020 is looking mighty good for Red Dog Press!
A Wash of Black is out today in eBook, paperback AND hardback! Get the paper version directly from Red Dog Press here or check out Amazon and feed your Kindle! AND there’s a Rafflecopter giveaway, courtesy of Red Dog Press, so if you want to win a signed Hardback edition of A Wash of Black, along with a Go Away I’m Reading Tote Bag and a Luxury Bookmark, click here!
Be sure to check out what these lovely people have to say, including Meggy and Jackie, my tour buddies for the day!