Tuesday 25 October 2022

The Soho Killer by Biba Pearce BLOG TOUR #TheSohoKiller #BibaPearce @BibaPearce @RandomTTours #BookExtract


The body of a middle-aged man is discovered in Soho. DCI Rob Miller, who’d thought he’d seen it all, is shocked by the violent death. The victim, dressed in a leather bondage outfit, has whip marks on his back and a ball-gag in his mouth. It looks like he's been raped and strangled, but whether it was autoerotic or murder, that remains to be seen.

Just when Rob's team is making headway with the investigation, another man is found dead, killed in the same fashion as the first victim. This turns their theory on its head and they are forced to release their suspect and go back to the drawing board. When a third man is murdered, it's clear someone is sending a message. Criminal profiler Tony Sanderson, a long-standing friend of Rob's, is called in to consult on the case. Together, they must unravel the killings that have left the local community reeling and bring an increasingly depraved serial killer to justice.

The Soho Killer by Biba Pearce is published in October by Joffe Books. As part of this #RandomThingsTours Blog Tour,  I am delighted to share an extract from the book with you.

Extract from The Soho Killer by Biba Pearce

“Where’s your partner tonight?” the killer asked, even though he knew. Mind games. He was better at them than the shrink.

A flicker of an eyelid. A sore point. “He’s away on business.”

“That’s a shame. You didn’t want to go with him?”

“It’s not that kind of trip. He’s in sales. This is a big conference somewhere up north. Partners aren’t welcome.”

“Well, his loss is my gain.” He flashed a naughty grin.

The man’s gaze lingered on his face. “You know, I didn’t realise you were . . .”

“Appearances can be deceiving. I don’t broadcast it.”

“Why not? Haven’t you come out?”

“It's not that.” He didn’t need his head read. “It’s just with my work—” He shrugged. “I think it's better if people don't know. None of their business anyway, right?”

“Right.” The man hesitated, as if unsure whether to continue. Finally, he said, “If you ever want to talk . . .”

The killer was getting bored with this conversation. Time to move on to the next step in his plan. “Thanks, I’ll keep that in mind.”

A shared smile. Eye contact, more than was appropriate.

“Hey, do you want to dance?” the killer asked.


They finished their drinks and moved to the dance floor. The killer had only so many practised moves, but it wouldn’t take long. Any minute now . . .

The man stumbled, clutching his arm.

“You okay?” the killer asked.

He frowned. “I don’t feel so good. Everything’s spinning.”

“God, I didn't realise you’d drunk that much.”

“I didn’t. I—”

He stopped, closing his eyes and teetering to the side.

The killer put an arm around his waist. “Okay, mate. Enough for you. Let’s get you home.” He shot an apologetic smile at the other revellers, most of whom nodded sympathetically. They’d all been there.

The killer led the man out of the club. “My car’s nearby. I’ll give you a lift home.”

“Thanks. I don’t know . . . I can’t . . . Oh, God . . .” His words ran into one another.

The killer kept his head down on the way out, just in case of security cameras. Half lugging, half dragging the seemingly inebriated man down the street, he rounded a corner and came to his car. With some effort, he heaved the legless man inside and closed the door.

The man lived a few streets away — within walking distance, but not within stumbling distance. Too many cameras, too many potential eyewitnesses. The grey GTi was far less conspicuous as it slunk down the street, keeping well below the speed limit.

Less than five minutes later, the killer pulled up outside the man’s house. He glanced over his shoulder. The man was out cold in the back, drooling all over the seat.

Charming. Still, it was exactly as he’d planned. So far, everything was working out perfectly.

The killer pulled a black hoodie over his white shirt, so he’d blend into the shadows. Then he took a pair of latex gloves out of the glove compartment and put them on. Finally, he wrapped two plastic bags around his shoes and tied them at the ankle, to prevent any prints or other trace evidence. You couldn’t be too careful these days.

Making sure there were no dark heads watching from lit windows, he heaved the drugged man into the house. It was easy enough to rummage through the man’s pockets for his keys, and as he already knew from his previous reconnaissance, there was no burglar alarm.

It was a split-level apartment with the living room and kitchen downstairs, and a double bedroom and bathroom upstairs. Brown carpets, paisley wallpaper, dark wood furniture. The place was stuck in the seventies.

The killer laid the man down on the carpet. At least the stains wouldn’t show.

He returned to his car, opened the boot and took out a length of rope and a rucksack containing an outfit he’d bought months ago from a fetish shop in Amsterdam, some cleaning products and a few other bits and pieces. The police would never think to look that far afield. He smiled to himself as he stripped the man and dressed him in the bondage gear. Poor fool wouldn’t know what had hit him.

Dressing a semi-conscious man was hard work and the killer was lathered in sweat by the time he’d finished.

“Let’s get on with it,” he muttered to himself. The longer he stayed here, the more chance there was of leaving evidence behind.

He tied the rope around the man’s neck and secured it at the back with a slipknot. He gave it a firm pull. That wasn’t going to budge. Then, taking the other end of the rope, he climbed up the stairs to the top level.

Now for the hard part.

Like a sailor at the mast, the killer hauled the rope until the man began to move. He must weigh at least seventy kilograms, so it was hard work, but eventually he had him upright. The noose had tightened but it wasn’t strangling him yet. That would come.

He hoisted the man up, using the banister as leverage, until the man’s feet were off the ground. Another few inches would do it.

Christ, he was heavy.

The man suddenly woke up. Lack of air, most probably. He grunted, then began flailing his arms around, trying to clutch on to something, anything, to stop the noose from tightening further.

“It’s futile,” whispered the killer, watching from above.

There was a disgusting gurgling sound as the man’s air supply was cut off. His legs kicked back and forth, making him sway. The noose would just get tighter the more he struggled.

Eventually, the man grew still. The gurgling stopped and his limbs ceased flailing about.

Was he dead?

The killer secured the rope around the banister, keeping it taut. To be believable, the man’s feet should be a good few inches off the ground. If he wasn’t dead, he would be soon.

Job done. For there could only be one winner.

All that was left for the killer to do was pack up his rucksack and get out of there. He left via the front door, closing it gently behind him. Not once did he turn back to look at the victim’s face.

Biba Pearce is a British crime writer and author of the DCI Rob Miller series. 

Biba grew up in post-apartheid Southern Africa. 

As a child, she lived on the wild eastern coast and explored the sub-tropical forests and surfed in shark-infested waters. 

Now a full-time writer with more than twenty-five novels under her belt, Biba lives in leafy Surrey and when she isn't writing, can be found walking through the countryside or kayaking on the river Thames. 

Twitter @BibaPearce


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