Oops, I’ve got my thumb over the author’s name in the photo. This rip-rollicking read is Snap by Belinda Bauer.

It was a recommendation picked up from the BBC 2 television programme Between the Covers.

And it is great.

You might be able to see in that hideous yellow circle on the cover (I really hate those) that Val McDermid, aka The Queen of Crime, says it’s the best crime novel she has read in a very long time. Well there’s a recommendation for you.

This is a real page turner and it’s packed full of action.

Jack is in the car with his mother and two younger sisters when the vehicle breaks down. Leaving the kids in the car on the hard shoulder, his heavily pregnant mum sets off for the emergency phone to call for help… and that’s the last time he ever sees her.

Days later her body is discovered in undergrowth at the side of the road but her killer is never found.

Three years on and Jack’s dad has walked out. He is desperate to keep the family together and so pretends his dad still lives at home and sets out on a life of burglary – a skill he is remarkably adept at – to raise money for food and anything else his siblings need.

The police dub him the Goldilocks burglar as he sleeps in his victims’ beds but they are unable to catch him after around 100 burglaries. A newly-transferred (put out to pasture) Detective Chief Inspector arrives from the Metropolitan Police and sets about trying to solve the spate of crimes.

Jack is haunted by the death of his mother, convinced he should have saved her. And then one day, while searching a home during his latest burglary, he finds something that gives him the answers he needs.

All he needs is to persuade the police to investigate.

This novel is a real page turner with a masterful plot that keeps you guessing. The character of Jack is wonderfully written, despite the responsibility of bringing up his two sisters, and the trauma of losing his mother, and doing the very best he can to hold it all together, he is still a child.

DCI Marvel is angry at pretty much everyone and resents being sent to the sticks as punishment for a misdemeanour in London. He is desperate for a big case to improve his standing once again.

And to add another string of intrigue, there’s another pregnant woman who now finds herself in great danger.

If you are looking for a really good crime novel to dive right into and that holds your attention throughout, then you won’t go wrong with this.

One response to “REVIEW: Snap”

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