Blog Tour: The Murder List by Chris Merritt
Today I am joining the blog tour for The Murder List by Chris Merritt. It is a debut thriller, which made me even more excited be be asked to join the tour and have a chance to read a new author's work. As you know, I do read a lot of crime fiction, so I have become a little harder to please when it comes to that genre, but this book was both satisfying as a mystery and impressive as a debut.
The lifeless body sat, hands bound, silver tape over his mouth. Patches of blood had soaked into the cheap carpet around him. Zac had spent years gaining scientific insight into the mind: human motivation and behaviour. And this scene wasn’t right... It’s been five years since Detective Zac Boateng’s daughter was murdered and her killer was never found. Now Zac is back working for the Metropolitan Police and is more determined than ever to bring the city’s killers to justice. When a man is found brutally murdered in a rundown south London shop, all fingers point to the highly intelligent and manipulative Darian Wallace. Two years ago, the victim helped send him to prison. And he’s just been released. Still grieving, Zac knows it will take everything he's got to catch this dangerously clever killer. But just as he feels he’s getting closer, he realises all is not quite as it seems and he makes a devastating personal discovery. Zac has a choice to make – risk letting this killer escape or watch his daughter’s murderer get away again… An absolutely gripping thriller for fans of Mark Billingham, Peter James and Lee Child. The Murder List is one fast-paced thriller you won’t be able to put down.
I have said it in many a review, I am a reader for characters, and Zac Boateng is definitely a memorable one. His past makes him both tragic and sympathetic, and I liked the balance between the serious side of him and his relationship with his wife, which felt quite real. The story itself moved at a goof pace almost from the start and the writing is polished. Zac has a background in psychology and this gives him an added edge, analyzing the mind of a criminal. The murder is quite grim, but I liked that Zac and his team are clever about it. A lot of times, I find the detectives are a bit oblivious, but maybe that because I read way too much crime fiction! Anyway . . . the story moves along quickly, and when it got to the shocking discovery of the killer of Zac's daughter, I was totally hooked. I did feel everything wrapped up a bit too neatly, but then it might have been dissatisfying if there had been more loose strings.
This is the first book in a planned series, and I will definitely be picking up the sequel. Zac is a strong, multi-dimensional character, and I am eager to see how his story continues.
Many thanks to Noelle Holten at Bookouture and Netgalley for supplying a copy of The Murder List in exchange for an honest review!
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Chris Merritt is a Clinical Psychologist and former diplomat based in London, who has been writing on psychology since 2010. In 2014 he decided to combine his passion for writing with his love of crime fiction, and eventually came up with The Murder List, his debut novel. He currently works on a mental health research project at King’s College London, and part-time as a psychologist in the NHS. When not working or writing, he loves climbing and basketball, and dreams of one day being able to work from home enough to own a whippet.
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