29 August 2019

Black Summer

A 2019 Top Rated Read

By M. W. Craven

Paperback 400 pages
Publisher Constable (12th Dec 2019)

'In Tilly and Poe, MW Craven has created a stand-out duo who are two of the most compelling characters in crime fiction in recent years. They deserve to join the ranks of Holmes and Watson, Rebus and Clarke, Hill and Jordan . . .' Fiona Cummins

📕My Review

Black Summer is the second book in the Washington Poe crime series and WAHOO, what an amazing read! I was gripped from the beginning and couldn't put it down until I reached the final thrilling chapter.

Six years earlier Poe helped put celebrity chef Jared Keaton behind bars for the murder of his daughter Elizabeth. Although a body was never found, Keaton's conviction was largely down to Poe's testimony. Fast forward to the present day and a bedraggled young woman turns up out of the blue claiming to be Elizabeth Keaton. Although her DNA is a perfect match, Poe remains convinced she's dead. Now all he has to do is prove it. . . again.

I'm really loving this fantastic series by author M. W. Craven. Washington Poe and colleague Tilly Bradshaw are just wonderful together. She's a socially awkward intellectual and he's a hardened detective; yet they're a perfect combination.

The story hurtles along at a breath-taking pace and throws up all manner of unexpected twist and turns. It exciting, thrilling, suspenseful and very well crafted. It's British crime fiction at its very best.

If you get the opportunity to read this book, grab it with both hands! I can't wait to read the next installment.

Book Source: Review copy from the publisher
Rating ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Other Reviews:
The Puppet Show

📗The Blurb

Jared Keaton, chef to the stars. Charming. Charismatic. Psychopath . . . He's currently serving a life sentence for the brutal murder of his daughter, Elizabeth. Her body was never found and Keaton was convicted largely on the testimony of Detective Sergeant Washington Poe.

So when a young woman staggers into a remote police station with irrefutable evidence that she is Elizabeth Keaton, Poe finds himself on the wrong end of an investigation, one that could cost him much more than his career.

Helped by the only person he trusts, the brilliant but socially awkward Tilly Bradshaw, Poe races to answer the only question that matters: how can someone be both dead and alive at the same time?

And then Elizabeth goes missing again - and all paths of investigation lead back to Poe.

Cynical and ruthless, he has always teetered on the edge. Has Poe finally crossed that line and embraced his darkness?

📘The Author

M. W. Craven was born in Carlisle but grew up in Newcastle, running away to join the army at the tender age of sixteen. He spent the next ten years travelling the world having fun, leaving in 1995 to complete a degree in social work with specialisms in criminology and substance misuse. Thirty-one years after leaving Cumbria, he returned to take up a probation officer position in Whitehaven, eventually working his way up to chief officer grade. Sixteen years later he took the plunge, accepted redundancy and became a full-time author. He now has entirely different motivations for trying to get inside the minds of criminals . . .

The Puppet Show, the first in a two-book deal he signed with the Little, Brown imprint, Constable in 2017, was released to critical acclaim in hardback in 2018. It has been sold in numerous foreign territories and the production company Studio Lambert, creators of the award-winning Three Girls, have optioned it for TV. The sequel, Black Summer, follows in June 2019.

M. W. Craven is married and lives in Carlisle with his wife, Joanne. When he isn’t out with his springer spaniel, or talking nonsense in the pub, he can be found at punk gigs and writing festivals up and down the country.

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