Sunday 1 March 2015

No Name Lane by Howard Linskey

The hunt for a serial killer unearths an unsolved cold case from over sixty years ago.
Young girls are being abducted and murdered in the North-East. Out of favour Detective Constable Ian Bradshaw struggles to find any leads - and fears that the only thing this investigation will unravel is himself.
Journalist Tom Carney is suspended by his London tabloid and returns to his home village in County Durham. Helen Norton is the reporter who replaced Tom on the local newspaper. Together, they are drawn into a case that will change their lives forever.
When a body is found, it's not the latest victim but a decades-old corpse. Secrets buried for years are waiting to be found, while in the present-day an unstoppable killer continues to evade justice...

No Name Lane by Howard Linskey will be published by Penguin on 12 March 2015 in paperback.

No Name Lane is a long book, it runs to almost 500 pages, but despite the length, it is an accessible, quite simple story.

Set in the North East of England, in a fairly average, if a little run-down, ex-mining village, this is the first instalment in a new crime series that fans of Peter Robinson and Stuart MacBride will enjoy.

DC Ian Bradshaw is a young, troubled copper. He's out of favour with the top brass of the force, and with his colleagues. There is a serial killer on the loose, he targets young girls and the investigating team have no leads, and no ideas. Bradshaw is desperate to work on the case, but instead, he finds himself on the outskirts of the team, concentrating on trying to discover the identity of a recently uncovered skeleton. It's clear that this is an old case, and Bradshaw despairs of finding anyone in the village who can shed light on a murder that took place sixty years ago.

Tom Carney is in a similar place to Bradshaw. A local who left to work as a journalist on a tabloid newspaper in London, he too finds himself excluded from his team. He made a huge mistake, and has returned to his old stomping ground to nurse his wounds.
Tom soon finds himself caught up in both the current investigation and the decades old murder. Teaming up with local reporter Helen, Tom is determined that this story will be the one that proves to his editor that he really is a great journalist.

Howard Linskey has created a fast-moving and intricate story. The plot moves at a fast pace, throwing up surprises and unexpected discoveries at every turn. His characters are well drawn, if a little predictable in this genre; with the troubled detective and the well-worn journalist with issues of his own.

The North East setting is described so well, with the bluntness and wry humour of the people of the region expertly woven into the dialogue.

Gritty, with an intriguing plot; No Name Lane is a great start to this new series, I look forward to reading more about Bradshaw and Carney in the future.

My thanks to Real Readers who sent my copy for review.

Howard Linskey is the author of the David Blake series, the first of which The Drop was selected as one of the 'Top Five Crime Thrillers of the Year' by The Times and the second, The Damage, was also in The Times as a 'Top Crime & Thriller Summer Reads'. 

Originally from Ferryhill in County Durham, he now lives in Hertfordshire with his wife and daughter.

For more information check out his website
Follow him on Twitter @HowardLinskey

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