Tag Archives: The Reckoning

The Stranger You Know

The Stranger You Know Jane Casey

The Stranger You Know: A (Maeve Kerrigan) Novel by Jane Casey (Minotaur Books, $25.99, 384 pages)

It surprised him, but he didn’t mind that she was dead. He could look at her, really look at her, without being interrupted. Without being afraid that she would say something, or do something, that might hurt him.

The slightly off-kilter, macabre opening is a flashback to 1992. There’s no doubt; this is classic Jane Casey writing. Her measured tone keeps the reader riveted to the page while she spins a web of intrigue. The Stranger You Know is the fourth book of the Detective Inspector Maeve Kerrigan mystery series set in present-day London. Detective Inspector Josh Derwent, another ongoing character, is her partner on the police force. Derwent wins no personality contests but he is a good policeman. At least that’s what Maeve has come to believe.

This time around Maeve is called into a special group investigating two recent murders and one from 20 years ago that appears to be the first in a series. Perhaps the group has a serial killer to chase down. To make matters more complicated, Derwent is linked to the first murder.

The book reads like a diary from Maeve’s perspective. The sections are sequenced as days of a week beginning with Thursday and ending more than a week later. One additional flashback to 1992 well into the plot helps the reader put the crimes and characters into better perspective.

Author Casey is a master at weaving real clues with red herrings. Her readers will be satisfied with the quality of this tale. The lives of her characters are usually thrown open for examination, almost as in an autopsy. The Stranger You Know is true to form, a fine form.

Highly recommended.

Ruta Arellano

A review copy was received from the publisher. This book will be released in a trade paper version on March 31, 2015.

The Stranger You Know (back cover)

Jane Casey is the author of The Burning, The Lost Girl, and The Reckoning.

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Werewolves of London

The Reckoning: A Crime Novel by Jane Casey (Minotaur Books, $15.99, 373 pages)

What we have here is an easy segue from Ms. Casey’s prior novel, The Burning, that was previously reviewed on this site, to the next episode in the adventures of Maeve Kerrigan, a Detective Constable with the London police force. Although the main character and narrator is a female cop, she works within an equal opportunity team of detectives who share the labor and victory while capturing some of the grossest lowlifes imaginable.

The Reckoning (nook book)

Crime solving in this tale goes beyond just catching criminals, rather, the action takes Maeve into an exploration of the seamy side of pedophilia and underworld crime bosses. The action is fierce and there are some harrowing situations that the reader will be eager to get past. But isn’t that why we read this genre?

I fell into my step behind him. My feet were aching, my neck hurt and I could barely think straight, but I didn’t dare opt out. “Where are we headed?” “Back to the nick. I want to brief Superintendent Godley before the close of business. You might as well come too. Someone has to read through the files on Palmer and Tremlett and it’s not going to be me.”

Author Casey creates some new characters that blend well with the ongoing ones. There are some relationships in the police precinct that are puzzling and some of the characters are abrasive while others reveal their true nature with actions that are engaging. On a lighter note, Maeve’s career and private life move to a new level. Happily, Casey once again sets the stage for another book in the series.

Well recommended.

Ruta Arellano

A review copy was provided by the publisher. “Casey has succeeded in writing another impossible-to-put-down thriller…” Library Journal

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