“When the body of Lola Evans is found in a local park on a cold winter’s morning, Detective Alex King and her new recruit Chloe Lane are called in to lead the hunt for the killer.
Days later, a second girl goes missing. It seems the two shared a troubled history, and were members of the same support group. Who is the monster preying on these vulnerable girls?
As the detectives start to piece together the clues, Chloe realises that she too is in danger – as she uncovers secrets about her own brother’s death which someone will kill to keep hidden.
Alex and Chloe are soon fighting for their lives, and in a race against time to reach the next victim before it’s too late…
Chilling and totally compelling with an utterly surprising twist, The Girls in the Water is perfect for fans of Robert Bryndza, Sarah Hilary, and Patricia Gibney.”
I am absolutely delighted to be kicking off the The Girls in the Water blog tour today alongside Marina at licence2read. The Girls in the Water is author Victoria Jenkins’ debut novel and is published by Bookouture in eBook format TODAY! Happy book birthday to Victoria and the gorgeous folk at Bookouture.
I was immediately drawn to this book thanks to that stunning cover. And then I read the blurb and knew it would be a match made in heaven (that’s me and the book, by the way!). There’s nothing I like more than a gripping police procedural/serial killer thriller but when the two lead female protagonists are feisty, head-strong, kick-ass detectives then I know I’m in for a corker of a read.
As soon as you start reading you are hurled, by the well-constructed prologue, into a harrowing scene of mental child abuse. Your heart goes out to the unknown boy who is being berated by his mother for something that, whilst distressing, is blown all out of proportion in order to serve the mother’s own needs. The boy’s attempts to distance himself from the hurt were a tough read and I felt incredibly sad for this unnamed character. I admired this debut author’s ability to create such a heart-wrenching and intriguing opening to her novel.
Before long you meet DI Alex King and DC Chloe Lane. I wanted to fall head over heels in love with both characters but I’m afraid it didn’t happen immediately. It was much more of a slow build over the course of the novel. I initially warmed more to DC Lane as she felt more spontaneous, more outgoing and a lot more fun to be around than her superior. However, as the story progressed I felt I had a lot more in common with DI King (plus she’s more my age, obv.!). She felt like a safe and trusted pair of hands and she shone that little bit brighter for me.
DC Lane becomes quite distracted with an older case at an early stage in the story which creates an interesting discord between Chloe and her senior officers. It’s clear to see there has been a lot of careful planning in creating the character’s back stories as these all add real value and link seamlessly as you approach the conclusion. For a debut, this book is incredibly well plotted and the characters felt very credible.
Would I recommend this book? I would and I plan on pre-ordering the next book in the series as soon as it is available. There is one twist in this book that I really didn’t see coming and it knocked me sideways. As an avid crime reader I will always appreciate the books that can do that! A brilliant debut and I look forward to reading more from Victoria Jenkins in the near future.
Four out of five stars.
I chose to read and review an eARC of The Girls in the Water. The above review is my own unbiased opinion. My thanks to Kim, Noelle and the Bookouture team for asking me to join the blog tour.
The Girls in the Water by Victoria Jenkins was published in the UK by Bookouture on 3rd August 2017 and is available in paperback, eBook and audio formats | amazon.co.uk | amazon.com | Goodreads | Book Depository |
Victoria Jenkins lives with her husband in South Wales, where she writes crime fiction and teaches English. The Girls in the Water is her debut novel, the first featuring Detective Inspector Alex King and Detective Constable Chloe Lane. The second book in the series will be published in late 2017.