When Caroline over at Bitsaboutbooks asked me to take part in the #BlogTour for this new novel from Michael Fowler, I couldn’t resist the blurb! It sounded right up my street and I was not wrong! I’ve just put this book down after devouring it in less than a day and I’d like to thank Caroline and the publisher, Caffeine Nights, for the ARC to review.
What the blurb says:
It is the opening day of Detective Sergeant Scarlett Macey’s biggest case of her life – ‘The Lycra Rapist’ is standing trial for a series of brutal rapes.
But things don’t go according to plan – the trial collapses – and James Green is freed.
Scarlett is determined his freedom will not last long and immediately begins planning his downfall.
Meanwhile, James Green has his own plans for revenge, and driven by feelings of hatred begins to pick out those who brought about his downfall – priming them for the kill.
Scarlett has faced many villains in the past, but never one quite as terrifying as James Green…
I’ve not read any of Michael Fowler’s books before but let’s just say that this author has now found himself a brand new fan!
“You’re Next” is the second in the Scarlett Macey series from the author. We meet DS Scarlett Macey as the case against a vicious rapist has collapsed and James Green is free to go. This man has caused untold trauma and devastation to at least three women and Scarlett vows to make him pay for his crimes. But James Green has his own plan of revenge against those who set out to capture him and what follows is a fast-paced and head-turning rollercoaster ride of a read that just does not let up the pace right until the very last page! I had not read the first in the series and this did not detract at all from my enjoyment of the book.
Scarlett Macey is a strong female protagonist and she wormed her way under my skin from the very beginning. Her tenacity and desire for justice was evident throughout the book. She doesn’t mind bending a few rules but she is not a maverick cop, just an all round decent one who is determined to see James Green face justice for his crimes. Her personal life is also intriguing and relationships, past and present, aroused my curiosity. I am looking forward to finding out more about her as this series continues.
Within the team, there are the usual strong partnerships and tensions. Her partner DS Tarn Scarr is facing a tough battle in his personal life and it soon becomes clear that all has not been rosy in the garden with him for some time. Just how bad things have become soon become clear to Scarlett and the team in a case which leaves them feeling shellshocked!
DI Hayden Taylor Butler, Scarlett’s boss, is not on the top of her Christmas card list, that’s for sure and I just got a real sense of sleaze and sexism coming from him throughout the book and I am sure that Scarlett is going to revel in seeing him being taken down a peg or two as the series progresses.
I could go on and on about the characters in the book, but I will leave you to find out about the rest of them yourselves! I’ll save my last word for James Green – God that man was vile and I was rooting for Scarlett all the way to bring him down! He’s a real shit of a character and one I’d never tire of slapping!
Woven in amongst the main plot are a few subplots that will keep all lovers of police procedurals glued to the pages. This gives a sense of realism as the team are not just focused on one case throughout the novel; it mirrors everyday policing. It is evident that the author has experience in this field as the narrative is realistic without being overly dependent on either procedure or gratuitous scenes, despite the themes that are contained within the novel. From murder to child abuse, domestic violence and rape, You’re Next is definitely not a candy floss read but neither is it overly graphic
If you are looking for a tightly plotted police procedural that will have your brain spinning then this one is for you! The tension ramps up with every chapter and with a solid cast of characters, I think Michael Fowler is onto a winner with this series!
“You’re Next” is available for purchase from:
Check out what the rest of the bloggers on the tour are saying about “You’re Next”
Following retirement, after thirty-two years as a police officer, working mainly as a detective, Michael returned to the deadly business of murder, as a writer. His past work brought him very close to some nasty characters, including psychopaths, and gruesome cases, and he draws on that experience to craft his novels: There is nothing gentle about Michael’s stories.
His landmark novel Heart of the Demon, published in 2012, introduced Detective Sergeant Hunter Kerr. Michael has since written five novels and a novella featuring Kerr. He also released the first DS Scarlett Macey book in 2016. Michael is also the author of a stand-alone crime novella and a true crime thriller.
Michael has another side to his life – a passion for art, and has found considerable success as an artist, receiving numerous artistic accolades. Currently, his oil paintings can be found in the galleries of Spencer Coleman Fine Arts.
He is a member of the Crime Writers Association and International Thriller Writers.
Find out more at www.mjfowler.co.uk
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