One of my absolute favourite books of last year was the first novel in the Lucy Harwin series by Helen Phifer – Dark House. I read the whole thing on the flight to New York, a trip I’d been wanting to make for years. It was just as well that I was arriving somewhere fabulous, otherwise I’d have spent the whole time mourning the fact that I’d have to wait another nine months for the second book in the series to be release. It was one of those books that I just didn’t want to end. But book 2 in the series was definitely worth the wait. I know it is crazily early in 2018 to make this prediction, but I’d bet my bottom dollar (if I hadn’t spent them all in Macy’s) that Dying Breath will still be one of my top reads for 2018 by the end of this year too.
When Detective Lucy Harwin is called to the scene of a crime, she hopes that the discovery of a partially naked woman will be a one-off murder. After all, Lucy’s already had more than her fair share of serial killers in her life. With the discovery of more bodies, it seems Lucy’s hopes of avoiding another encounter with a serial killer are as dead as the victims. Except the MO in each of the cases is different and she can’t be certain whether her team are searching for more than one killer…
The descriptions of the police investigations feel utterly authentic and, as with all of Helen’s books, she had me on the edge all the way through. I shared Lucy’s fear, as though I was right there with her, when it seemed that she might get far closer to the killer than she ever wanted. Helen’s books always remind me that I’d never make a detective – I’m far too jumpy for a start and I’m always convinced that I know who the killer is, but I’m never right because the books are so well plotted.
I can’t wait for the next book in the series and I just hope I don’t have to wait until 2019 to read it. But, even if I do, I’ll take the bet that it will end up being one of my favourite books of next year. After all, my track record in that department is far better than my attempts at guessing who the killer will turn out to be!