Monday 9 December 2019

Black Summer by MW Craven @MWCravenUK BLOG TOUR @LittleBrownUK @BethWright26 #BlackSummer #TeamTilly @TheCrimeVault

Jared Keaton, chef to the stars. Charming. Charismatic. Psychopath . . . He's currently serving a life sentence for the brutal murder of his daughter, Elizabeth. Her body was never found and Keaton was convicted largely on the testimony of Detective Sergeant Washington Poe.
So when a young woman staggers into a remote police station with irrefutable evidence that she is Elizabeth Keaton, Poe finds himself on the wrong end of an investigation, one that could cost him much more than his career.
Helped by the only person he trusts, the brilliant but socially awkward Tilly Bradshaw, Poe races to answer the only question that matters: how can someone be both dead and alive at the same time?
And then Elizabeth goes missing again - and all paths of investigation lead back to Poe.
The gripping new thriller in the Washington Poe series from M. W. Craven, winner of the CWA Gold Dagger Award for best crime novel of 2019.

Black Summer by MW Craven is published in paperback by Constable on 12 December 2019. Black Summer is the second in the Washington Poe series; the follow up to The Puppet Show which won the CWA Gold Dagger Award for best crime novel of 2019.

My thanks to the author, and Beth from Constable who sent my copy for review and who asked me to take part on this Blog Tour.

I read The Puppet Show, the  first in this series at the beginning of the year and was totally blown away; by the writing, the plot and the characters. I was so eager to read Black Summer, and at last, I've been able to fit it into what is becoming an increasingly packed reading schedule.

Oh. My. God.      That's it, that is really all that I want to say. Once more, this truly skilled (and, I have to say, a little bit warped) author has taken my breath away. His attention to detail, his fine plotting and his almost obscene ideas really are any crime fiction lover's dream.

If you haven't yet read The Puppet Show, I'd advise that you do. However, Black Summer can be read as a standalone. The author incorporates just enough of Poe's back story to enable anyone to follow this easily, but my opinion is that you'll get much more of a feel of the development of the characters if you start with The Puppet Show first.

 Black Summer opens with a short, but shocking  prologue that paves the way for the rest of the novel, and chapter one is especially quite macabre, set in the dining room of a Michelin starred restaurant. It will shock, it may turn your stomach, but it will compel you to read on.

What follows is a fast-paced, complex and incredibly intelligent story. We find Washington Poe called back to Cumbria. He left the Cumbrian force five years ago, but something, or someone has turned up which poses questions about a case he worked on, and may see him behind bars instead of Jared Keaton; the celebrity chef who Poe was responsible for imprisoning for the murder of his own daughter.

How can Elizabeth Keaton be alive? How has she turned up at a small outreach Police desk in the heart of the Pennines? Poe knows she was killed by her father. He worked the case, and even though Elizabeth's body was never recovered, he is certain of Keaton's guilt.

Once more, Poe works with Tilly Bradshaw; the strange, quirky, but exceptionally intelligent woman who was once a lowly civilian worker on the force but now heads up her own team of investigators.
The relationship between Poe and Tilly is wonderfully done. Poe's initial reluctance to accept Tilly has turned into such affection and respect for this woman whose brain works as quick as any computer and who speaks her mind; regardless of the impact of her words.

It's not for me to tell the plot of Black Summer but I can assure you that it is probably one of the cleverest and most thrilling concepts that I've ever come across in fiction. Kudos to the author; the amount of research that he must have done to write this is incredible, and whilst there's a great deal of science, it is never dull or dry, it's always fascinating and perfectly aligned with the developing plot.

Flawlessly plotted with characters that almost jump from the pages with an atmospheric and almost eerie landscape setting. Black Summer is seamless and extraordinarily well written.

I can't wait to meet Poe and Tilly in the next in this amazing series. Beautifully dark and exquisitely disturbing. Truly exceptional.

MW Craven was born in Carlisle but grew up in Newcastle, returning after thirty-one years to take up a probation officer position in Whitehaven, eventually working his way up to chief officer grade. Sixteen years later he took the plunge, accepted redundancy and became a full-time author. He now has entirely different motivations for trying to get inside the mind of criminals.

His first novel featuring Washington Poe and Tilly Bradshaw, The Puppet Show, was published by Constable last year to huge acclaim, and he's now working on books three and four in the series to satisfy his fans' cravings for more Poe and Tilly.

MW Craven lives in Carlisle with wife, Joanne. When he isn't out with his springer spaniel of talking nonsense in the pub, he can usually be found at punk gigs and writing festivals up and down the country.

Website :
Twitter : @MWCravenUK
Author page on Facebook
Instagram : @m.w.craven

No comments:

Post a Comment