Review: The Murder Wall by Mari Hannah

Monday, 24 August 2015
Title: The Murder Wall
Author: Mari Hannah
Publisher: Pan
Publication Date: 12th April 2012
Pages: 464
ISBN: 9780330539937
Source: Purchased
Rating: 3.5/5
Purchase: Amazon
Eleven months after discovering a brutal double murder in a sleepy Northumbrian town, Detective Chief Inspector Kate Daniels is still haunted by her failure to solve the case. Then the brutal killing of a man on Newcastle’s Quayside gives Daniels another chance to get it right, and her first case as Senior Investigating Officer.

When Daniels recognises the corpse, but fails to disclose the fact, her personal life swerves dangerously into her professional life. But much worse, she is now being watched.

As Daniels steps closer to finding a killer, a killer is only a breath away from claiming his next victim...

Mari Hannah's Kate Daniels series is another one that has been on my TBR for far too long and as 2015 is all about me catching up on books I've missed, and continuing and starting new series I decided to finally pick this one up.

It's almost a year since DCI Kate Daniels discovered a brutal double murder, a murder that she failed to solve. The murder of a man on Newcastle's Quayside gives Daniels her first case as Senior Investigating Officer however there's a problem - Daniels recognises the corpse and must decide whether or not to reveal all to her superiors. Daniels is described as an officer with an exemplary career, certainly one that doesn't need to 'prove' anything you would assume, so I did wonder just what would happen in the story regarding her keeping this secret. Typically when an officer keeps something quiet in crime fiction it works one of two ways: in their favour, or exceptionally bad.

It was very early on in The Murder Wall when I knew Mari Hannah was going to be an author that writes the kind of gritty and dark crime fiction that I just love to read, and I really think this is a series that I will enjoy a lot. The Murder Wall is a solid police procedural, with just the right amount of detail about police work and policies, some authors have a tendency to go into too much detail and the story itself did keep me guessing for the most part because of a good mix of suspects, and it excited me enough that I wanted to read on.

I have a habit of reading crime fiction set in places that I've never visited but where I want to go and Newcastle is one such place. Most people head for the tourist websites, I head for the crime fiction! Anyway, Mari Hannah captures the city brilliantly, and uses it as the perfect backdrop to the story, allowing for some truly atmospheric scenes to play out as the story progresses. All in all Kate Daniels is a character I want to continue reading about. Some of my favourite fictional detectives are females and perhaps Daniels will join the ranks in the near future. I imagine most will have discovered Mari by now, but for the few that haven't I definitely recommend The Murder Wall.

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