Monday 20 November 2017

The Deaths of December by Susi Holliday #BlogTour @SJIHolliday @MulhollandUK @HodderBooks #DeathsOfDecember

The hunt is on for a serial killer in this thrilling festive crime novel

It looks like a regular advent calendar.
Until DC Becky Greene starts opening doors...and discovers a crime scene behind almost every one.
The police hope it's a prank. Because if it isn't, a murderer has just surfaced - someone who's been killing for twenty years.
But why now? And why has he sent it to this police station?
As the country relaxes into festive cheer, Greene and DS Eddie Carmine must race against time to catch the killer. Because there are four doors left, and four murders will fill them...
It's shaping up to be a deadly little Christmas.

The Deaths of December by Susi Holliday was published in paperback by Mulholland Books / Hodder on 16 November 2017 and is the author's fourth novel.

Susi Holliday writes the Banktoun series as SJI Holliday and I am a huge fan of those books. When I heard that she was writing a Christmas themed crime novel, as a standalone, I was intrigued. I was delighted to receive a review copy from the publisher and to be invited to take part in this Blog Tour.

When I was a child we had the same advent calendar every year, it was old and tatty and there was no chocolate! Behind each door was a Christmas scene, ending with a nativity picture on 24 December. There are no festive pictures or Christmas babies in the advent calendar that arrives on DC Becky Greene's desk.  This is not a seasonal gift of goodwill or cheer. No, this advent calendar is home-made and behind each door is a negative from a photograph. Each photograph depicts the scene of a murder. A real murder. And there are four empty dates.

DS Eddie Carmine recognises one of the photos instantly, and then he recognises more. These are crimes that he's worked on, they are unsolved. What's the connection between him and the serial killer? It's clear that this is a serial killer, but the police have only just realised.

Becky and Eddie must work together to try to solve this, and to prevent four more murders from taking place.

The reader is also treated to a narrative from 'the photographer', which means that we are privy to far more information than Carmine and Greene (see what she did there? - the Christmas coloured theme - clever eh?)

The Deaths of December is not as dark as this author's previous work, there's a dry humour running through it, despite the theme. However, it is a complex and well woven story that keeps the reader on their toes. Susi Holliday excels in creating characters that the reader can relate to, they are multi layered and often surprising and work incredibly well.

The author takes her reader on a twisty ride, with unexpected bumps and swerving corners - seat belts are certainly needed and a crash helmet would be a good idea at times too!

The Deaths of December is an ingenious, originally told story that will make you look just a little closer to see what's behind the door on your advent calendar!

Susi (S.J.I) Holliday grew up in East Lothian, Scotland. A life-long fan of crime and horror, her short stories have been published in various places, and she was shortlisted for the inaugural CWA Margery Allingham prize. She has written three crime novels set in the fictional Scottish town of Banktoun, which are a mix of police procedural and psychological thriller. They are: "Black Wood", "Willow Walk" and "The Damselfly" - all featuring the much loved character, Sergeant Davie Gray. 

Her festive serial killer thriller "The Deaths of December", featuring Detective Sergeant Eddie Carmine and Detective Constable Becky Greene was published in November 2017.

You can find out more at her website: and on Facebook and Twitter @SJIHolliday. Sign-up for updates and giveaways here:

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