The Puppet Show – M W Craven (Washington Poe Book 1)

About the Book: Welcome to the Puppet Show . . .

A serial killer is burning people alive in the Lake District’s prehistoric stone circles. He leaves no clues and the police are helpless.

When his name is found carved into the charred remains of the third victim, disgraced detective Washington Poe is brought back from suspension and into an investigation he wants no part of.

Reluctantly partnered with the brilliant, but socially awkward, civilian analyst, Tilly Bradshaw, the mismatched pair uncover a trail that only he is meant to see. The elusive killer has a plan and for some reason Poe is part of it.

As the body count rises, Poe discovers he has far more invested in the case than he could have possibly imagined. And in a shocking finale that will shatter everything he’s ever believed about himself, Poe will learn that there are things far worse than being burned alive …

My Review:  Don’t you just love picking up a book and being instantly gripped and grabbed from the first chapter?  Well The Puppet Show is one of those books and I literally couldn’t put it down until I finished it.

What can I say that hasn’t already been said?  The setting in Cumbria is atmospheric and it was easy to imagine yourself in the midst of the prehistoric stone circles; the characters were wonderful and I’m not sure who I fell in love with more; Washington Poe and his “couldn’t give a sh*t attitude” or Tilly Bradshaw, the socially awkward but uber brilliant analyst assigned to help Poe and the team catch a brutal serial killer.

The serial killings were pretty gruesome and once you find out exactly how the victims are murdered and what is done to them it’s quite difficult to get that image out of your head (urrrggghhhh!).

There’s not much else I can say, except if you love a brilliantly plotted police crime thriller with a sick serial killer, some fabulous and quirky characters and the start of what should be a very successful series then pick up The Puppet Show and read it next.

About 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 . . .

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 usually be found at punk gigs and writing festivals up and down the country.

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