Wednesday, 30 January 2019

Play Dead (D.I. Kim Stone 4) - Angela Marsons


The dead don’t tell secrets… unless you listen.


The girl’s smashed-in face stared unseeing up to the blue sky, soil spilling out of her mouth. A hundred flies hovered above the bloodied mess.

Westerley research facility is not for the faint-hearted. A ‘body farm’ investigating human decomposition, its inhabitants are corpses in various states of decay. But when Detective Kim Stone and her team discover the fresh body of a young woman, it seems a killer has discovered the perfect cover to bury their crime.

Then a second girl is attacked and left for dead, her body drugged and mouth filled with soil. It’s clear to Stone and the team that a serial killer is at work – but just how many bodies will they uncover? And who is next?

As local reporter, Tracy Frost, disappears, the stakes are raised. The past seems to hold the key to the killer’s secrets – but can Kim uncover the truth before a twisted, damaged mind claims another victim …?


What did I think?

I stupidly jumped into the DI Kim Stone series at book 3 but at absolutely no detriment as I immediately loved Angela Marsons writing and her amazing character of Kim Stone.  Book 4 languished on my TBR for far too long but good things come to those who wait and this was SO GOOD!!  You can definitely read this book as a standalone and it is so brilliant that I think it will get the same high ratings from new readers as those given by die-hard Kim Stone fans.  

What a highly imaginative storyline this is; it is so utterly compelling, and slightly grisly, that it draws the reader in immediately.  I must have a touch of the macabre about me as I loved the setting on a body farm and, with witty names of the 'residents' like Jack and Vera, I did quite literally laugh out loud.  To be honest, I didn't realise that body farms were a real thing but it was absolutely fascinating to think that there are such facilities where the different stages of decomposition can be observed and studied.  I do love books that send me off to google to do a little research of my own.

As strong a character as Kim Stone is, she has some competition in Play Dead with reporter Tracy Frost.  Oh how Tracy annoyed me!  She is such a bloodhound; sniffing out stories and generally making a nuisance of herself...but you quickly get the impression that something else lies behind the facade of Tracy Frost.  As much as she annoyed me, she intrigued me and I simply couldn't read fast enough to uncover Tracy's story.

Play Dead is an ingenious storyline with a touch of the macabre that I absolutely raced through.  It is gripping, intriguing and utterly compelling and I am already looking forward to my next literary visit with DI Kim Stone.

I chose to read an ARC and this is my honest and unbiased opinion.

My rating:


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