Title: Stop Dead
Author: Leigh Russell
Publisher: No Exit
Publication Date UK (paperback): 30th May 2013
Detective Inspector Geraldine Steel returns in an exhilarating case of grisly murder in London When a successful businessman is brutally murdered, the police suspect his glamorous wife and her young lover. Then the victim’s business partner suffers the same gruesome fate and when yet another body is discovered, seemingly unrelated to the first two, the police are baffled. The only clue is DNA that leads them to two women: one dead, the other in prison. With a steady stream of bodies arriving at the morgue, can D.I. Geraldine Steel find the killer before the killer stages another deadly attack? (From Goodreads, 27th April 2013)
Stop Dead is the fifth novel in the Geraldine Steel Mystery Series. However, this is the first Leigh Russell novel I have read thanks go Real Readers and have added the first four novels to my ‘to read’ list. These novels can be read as stand alone novels, but I think if you have read the first four you will have more insight into Geraldine.
Having moved to London and successfully solved her first case in the city it isn’t long before a new case presents itself. A wealthy man is found dead in a car parking lot of a housing estate, sustaining horrific injuries to his temple and genitals. His now widowed wife, and her toy boy are the prime suspects, especially to Geraldine’s young colleague Sam. Sam’s younger years allows her imagination to fuel her believes and not focus on the evidence. Sam for me was an infuriating character, but as time goes on you begin to like her, and realise there is people like her which we all know. Someone who needs some guidance and help, but has sharp mind.
As the novel progresses we see Geraldine methodical way of going through the crimes that are piling up, a second then a third body. The third completely unrelated to the first victims, except from the way he is murdered. This third victim takes the novel on a very different focus and an understanding of the frustrations of Geraldine.
This is a well written novel, but in some cases a bit too clinical, and methodical. I am a psychological thriller type of person and like the understanding of the protagonists mind. We do see some of Geraldines mind and life but not as much as I would like, I feel it was an attempt to make her more human and relate to the readers but it didn’t work.
However, that is really my only main complaint. As you near the end you get an idea of who the murderer may be but you can not be sure until you are told.
A novel that will keep you flipping the pages until you get to the end.
I can only give this a 3.5 out of 5 as it didn’t feel as human as I like my books to be, but it’s still a book I would recommend!