#BookReview #WhispersInTheDark Chris McDonald @cmacwritescrime @RedDogTweets

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Source: Purchased direct from publisher

It’s fair to say, I’ve been waiting forever, for Whispers In The Dark! It’s the second in the DI Erika Piper series from Chris McDonald and let’s just say, it’s a belter!

Before I share my thoughts, here’s what the official blurb says:

Who will heed the call when Death comes whispering?

Small time drug dealer, Marcus Stone and DCI Clive Burston had never met until one night in August. By the end of that night, both had been shot dead in a small bedroom in the heart of gang territory.

DI Erika Piper is called to the scene but is at a loss to explain what’s happened. How did these two even meet, let alone end up dead in what appears to be a strange murder-suicide?

As Erika leads the investigation, another two bodies are found, killed in a similar fashion. One murder, one suicide. But who is controlling this macarbre puppet show?

As Erika delves deeper into the lives of the dead, the pieces begin to fit together and a number of nefarious characters crawl out of the woodwork – one of whom is almost certainly pulling the strings.

A catastrophic event and a personal miracle threaten to derail the investigation. Erika must find the strength to continue, before the whispers catch up with her too… 

My thoughts:

Holy moly! Talk about a killer hook of an opening! Well Chris McDonald just nailed that killer hook moment, and then some, with Whispers in the Dark. The tension was palpable and as soon as I turned those first pages, I just knew Chris McDonald was going to have me reading well past my bedtime and I was not wrong!

Chris McDonald introduces us to a dark and terrifying time in the past before swiftly bringing us back to the present where we join DI Erika Piper celebrating the wedding of a colleague. But, if you know just how dark and twisted this writer’s mind is, then you will not be wrong in guessing that life is going to become ugly for Erika and her colleagues when she receives a call to attend the discovery of two bodies. And boy does life become ugly!

Erika Piper is one of those fictional characters who I immediately warmed to, I loved my introduction to her in A Wash of Black and in the follow up, we see just how clever Chris McDonald is in his creation of a character we are all going to remember. Erika Piper feels authentic, she is well rounded, engaging and I feel as though I am really getting to know her. It is this skill which draws in the reader and places them firmly inside her head and in her life. She is so perfectly imperfect and that’s what makes her human.

A few more characters are introduced, some of whom you will recognise and some who will be new, each of them earning their place in the story and each of them leaving their own impression on the reader. Erika has a strong team around her and for this case she most definitely needed it! Jeez does she need it.

The plot is pacy, the tension is high and the nail biting begins very early on. This one is an emotional rollercoaster and Chris McDonald put me through an emotional wringer!  I am seriously considering not talking to him if I ever get to meet him, after the way he has left me feeling! And that’s when you know the book’s a winner, when it invokes such feelings, when you get so embroiled in the lives of the characters that you feel what they are going through. So much so that you want to call up the author and yell at him for leaving you an emotional wreck!

Whispers in the Dark also explores some dark themes; mental health and trauma in the emergency services is touched upon as is suicide and the vulnerability of those living with those feelings. The author is to be praised for his sensitivity in this area.

Whispers in the Dark is a cleverly crafted, tension filled, emotional rollercoaster, gut punch of a read! Don’t miss it!

Available to purchase via

Red Dog Press

Amazon UK

Amazon US

About the author

Chris McDonald


Chris McDonald grew up in Northern Ireland before settling in Manchester via Lancaster and London.

He is the author A Wash of Black, the first in the DI Erika Piper series, as well as the forthcoming second – Whispers In The Dark. He has also recently dabbled in writing cosy crimes, as a remedy for the darkness. The first in the Stonebridge Mysteries will be released in early 2021.

He is a full time teacher, husband, father to two beautiful girls and a regular voice on The Blood Brothers Podcast. He is a fan of 5-a-side football, heavy metal and dogs.
He is the author A Wash of Black, the first in the DI Erika Piper series, as well as the forthcoming second – Whispers In The Dark. He has also recently dabbled in writing cosy crimes, as a remedy for the darkness. The first in the Stonebridge Mysteries will be released in early 2021.

He is a full time teacher, husband, father to two beautiful girls and a regular voice on The Blood Brothers Podcast. He is a fan of 5-a-side football, heavy metal and dogs.

2 thoughts on “#BookReview #WhispersInTheDark Chris McDonald @cmacwritescrime @RedDogTweets

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