The Killer in Me by Olivia Kiernan

The Killer in Me by Olivia Kiernan

Detective Chief Superintendent Frankie Sheehan does not wish to linger on the grisly scene before her eyes. Two mutilated corpses. In a church. In Clontarf. Her profiling background screams one fact: this is just the beginning of a sickening message.

Meanwhile, a 17-year-old case is playing out on a TV documentary, the convicted professing his innocence and historical police errors being exposed daily in the media. Frankie’s superior, commissioner Donna Hegarty, makes no bones about who she expects to clean things up – both in terms of past mishandlings and the present murders.

But not everyone working the cases wants the truth to come out. And the corridors of power have their own vested interest. Soon Frankie pinpoints just what is making her so nervous: the fact that anyone could be the next victim when justice is the killer.

The Killer In Me is a fast-paced thriller in which lies are safer than the truth, the past is never far from the present, and the ability to kill could well, it seems, live in everyone.

I received a free copy of this book courtesy of the publisher.

Olivia Kiernan returns with another dark rollercoaster ride through the Irish criminal world. DCS Frankie Sheehan back on duty after the traumatic events in Too Close to Breath. For her second outing, Sheehan finds herself thrown head first into a grisly case far too close to home her liking, echoes of the past reverberating through to the present. Kiernan kicks of this dark novel with a double murder in a parish church close to Frankie Sheehan’s childhood home, while her sister-in-law asks her to help prove a man innocent who was convicted of the murder of his parents and attempted murder of his sister back when he was a teenager.
The Killer in MeI was so happy to have the chance to read the follow up to one of the best books I had the pleasure of reading last year. And as a debut book it was unbelievable just how good it was, so much so it ended 2018 as one of my top books. Then came the difficult second book. The Killer in Me easily lives up to last year’s debut and possibly eclipses it.

The murders as they continue are dark, the mystery ever deepening and the cast of suspects wide ranging and seemingly lacking any real connection. Kiernan has crafted a fantastic, tense and enjoyable read. I was hooked from the very first page and found myself often thinking “just one more chapter!”. It was a quick read, the desire to uncover the secrets intertwined in this case driving my desire to keep reading headlong towards the final conclusion.

The Killer in Me is the perfect second book to rejoin Frankie Sheehan in her journey into the murky Irish underworld. I thoroughly enjoyed this wonderfully written police procedural. At no time did it ever feel bogged down in detail in an attempt to add false credibility to the facts of the criminal justice system. The sense of frustration felt by the officers as the case stalls is palpable and the frenetic energy as the case draws close to an end, the killer close to being unmasked is unmistakable. If I enjoyed Too Close to Breath, The Killer in Me was the perfect way to sate my thirst for more and has only stoked my desire to read more from Kiernan and see what comes next for Frankie and the team.

My rating:


Too Close To Breathe by Olivia Kiernan

Too Close To Breathe by Olivia Kiernan

Polished. Professional. Perfect. Dead. Respected scientist Dr Eleanor Costello is found hanging in her immaculate home: the scene the very picture of a suicide.
DCS Frankie Sheehan is handed the case, and almost immediately spots foul play. Sheehan, a trained profiler, is seeking a murderer with a talent for death.
As Frankie strives to paint a picture of the killer, and their victim, she starts to sense they are part of a larger, darker canvas, on which the lines between the two blur.
Olivia Kiernan’s debut is a bold, brilliant thriller that will keep you guessing and leave you breathless.

I received a free copy of this book courtesy of the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

This book was a must read for me from the moment I read the description. I immediately responded to the email asking for bloggers to take part in a blog tour for Olivia Kiernan’s debut novel and the first in a series featuring tough-as-nails Detective Chief Superintendent Frankie Sheehan. When I came home from work to find a black bubble pack waiting for me, I couldn’t wait to open it. And my excitement was well-justified; the publishers having put together a fantastic promo pack. Alongside the book was a printed copy of the coroner report for victim Eleanor Costello, along with a pocket notebook and pencil to keep notes and a bag of (very nice, might I add) coffee to keep me going throughout the case. Colour me impressed, I am such a sucker for a good PR gimmick!

More importantly though, on to the book – Too Close To Breathe. Having read my fair share of murder mysteries this year, to date Kiernan has taken the top spot. Set in the dark and dreary Autumn and Winter of the Emerald Isle, tortured DCS Sheehan finds herself staring down the barrel of what appears to be a straightforward suicide investigation. Following an assault while chasing a murder, this looks like a simple case to ease her way back into detective work. But nothing is as it seems as the body count begins to rise, as does the list of suspects with one motive or another.
With her own tortured past to come to terms with Sheehan and her team need to ensnare the killer before they strike again. But how do you stop a monster that loves to play dead? This case forces Sheehan to delve into her tortured past, the mind of a calculated and devious killer and the darkest corners of the Dark Web just to stay on an ever-cooling trail.
I have read a lot of murder mysteries of late, all entertaining books, but most at some point reach a stage where the identity of the murderer becomes clear before the reveal. Kiernan has managed to keep the murderer a mystery all the way up until the point Sheehan works it out. A host of possible, and entirely plausible suspects all with reasonable motives make this one of the best murder mysteries I have read. Too Close To Breathe offers a damaged protagonist, a twisted killer and an horrific insight into the dark web. I look forward to seeing future cases involving DCS Frankie Sheehan.

My rating:
I feel the need to preface my rating for this book. Maybe I need to create a new icon. This book rates so highly with me, that it is one of my books of 2018 at this early stage of the year! Once I come up with a badge, I will update it here and maybe start a new annual review feature for my top books of the year!