“The body of a 15-year-old is found hours after she sends a desperate message to her friends. It looks like suicide, until a second girl disappears.
This time, the message is sent directly to the Metropolitan Police – and an officer’s younger sister is missing.
DS Nasreen Cudmore and journalist Freddie Venton will stop at nothing to find her. But whoever’s behind the notes is playing a deadly game of hide and seek – and the clock is ticking.
YOU HAVE 24 HOURS TO SAVE THE GIRL’S LIFE.
MAKE THEM COUNT.”
Back in February 2016 when damppebbles was still finding it’s feet and I was wondering what I had actually let myself in for by starting a book blog, I reviewed the brilliant Follow Me by author Angela Clarke, the first book in the Social Media Murders series. If you would like a recap or if you missed it the first time around you can read that review by clicking here. Please remember I was even more of a novice at this blogging lark than I am now…damppebbles wasn’t even a month old! Follow Me was a compelling read which I found fabulously dark and brilliantly disturbing. So earlier this year I was delighted to discover that the second book in the series had been published.
It was so good to be reacquainted with studious detective Nasreen Cudmore and bubbly, in your face Freddie Venton. Although I must say that I found it hard to recognise Freddie at first. I hate spoilers and I don’t know whether you’ve read the first book in the series so I’ll be as vague as I can and say that the events at the end of Follow Me changed Freddie and unfortunately not for the better.
In Follow Me I felt Freddie took the limelight, and rightly so. I really like Freddie’s character as she’s everything I’m not. In Watch Me it was Nasreen’s turn to steal the show and she does a brilliant job. This book focuses so much more on the detective’s side of the investigation with Freddie making the occasional contribution. This really worked for me as I feel I’m much more ‘Nasreen’ than I am ‘Freddie’ (in the same way that I’m much more ‘Monica’ than I am ‘Rachel or Phoebe’).
As in the first book the subject matter was current and handled with great care and respect. I felt slightly uncomfortable that the victims of the attacks tended to be teenagers but I get the feeling this is what Clarke wants the reader to feel. I can understand why the author chose to make one of the victims 15 years old as this demonstrates that age is no barrier to this particular crime (in fact, it’s probably more likely to happen to younger teenagers wanting to prove they are all ‘grown up’) but it did make me feel uncomfortable. I applaud the author for having the courage to make her readers squirm. I, for one, can confirm that this is a book I won’t forget in a while.
I would definitely recommend that you read Follow Me before making a start on Watch Me. The characters back stories are beautifully laid out in this book and you get to learn everything you need to know about them, apart from what actually happened at the end of the first book. It’s alluded to throughout but you will be left wondering about the exact details if you haven’t read Follow Me. Plus I will always recommend that you start with the first book in the series and work your way through.
I loved the conclusion. It was such a surprise to me and everything I want in my crime thrillers. Great pacing with a fantastic build up, that feeling that you know exactly what’s going on when you haven’t a clue. Brilliant.
Would I recommend this book? I would but please make sure you read Follow Me first as otherwise you’ll be left wondering exactly what happened at the end of the first book. I hold a great deal of affection for Nasreen and Freddie and I can’t wait for more from Angela Clarke. A great series that all crime fans should make a point of reading.
Four and a half out of five stars.
I chose to read and review an eARC of Watch Me. The above review is my own unbiased opinion.
I’m a Sunday Times Bestselling author, playwright, columnist, screenwriter and public speaker. My debut crime thriller Follow Me was named Amazon’s Rising Star Debut of the Month January 2016, longlisted for the Crime Writer’s Association Dagger in the Library 2016, and shortlisted for the Dead Good Reader Page Turner Award 2016. Watch Me the second instalment in the Social Media Murder Series went straight into the UK paperback chart at number 15 in January 2017. Trust Me the third in the Social Media Series is due out in June 2017.