April 16, 2021

Whispers in the Dark – Chris McDonald

Who will heed the call when Death comes whispering?

Small time drug dealer, Marcus Stone and DCI Clive Burston had never met until one night in August. By the end of that night, both had been shot dead in a small bedroom in the heart of gang territory. DI Erika Piper is called to the scene but is at a loss to explain what’s happened. How did these two even meet, let alone end up dead in what appears to be a strange murder-suicide?

As Erika leads the investigation, another two bodies are found, killed in a similar fashion. One murder, one suicide.

But who is controlling this macabre puppet show? As Erika delves deeper into the lives of the dead, the pieces begin to fit together and a number of nefarious characters crawl out of the woodwork – one of whom is almost certainly pulling the strings.

A catastrophic event and a personal miracle threaten to derail the investigation. Erika must find the strength to continue, before the whispers catch up with her too…

Online Blanket Fort Review

Huge thanks to Red Dog Press for having me on the opening day of the Blog Tour for Whispers in the Dark by Chris McDonald!

I read and reviewed Chris’s debut novel – A Wash of Black – earlier in 2020 and it scarred me. My review is on the link above if you really want to know why.

Whispers in the Dark is book 2 in the DI Ericka Piper series and there’s been no dip in quality from Chris – if anything it’s a more accomplished and intricate novel than his previous. Reading this book it feels as though he has settled into Ericka’s story, her character and into his role as one of those author types.

While this is a series, you could quite easily read Whispers in the Dark as a standalone novel. There’s enough explanation for new readers into Ericka’s back story without being too cumbersome for those who have read the previous book. Ericka is still a highly likeable character and it’s pleasing to see her settled into a relationship and back on track following not one but TWO near fatal incidents in the line of duty.

The story does tackle a lot of issues – some of which may be problematic for readers. McDonald has taken on suicide, drug abuse, child abuse, domestic abuse, fertility problems and murder amongst others. While this may sound quite heavy the stories have been told sensitively and not simply for shock value.

That said – Whispers in the Dark takes the reader on a rollercoaster of emotions. Just when you are thrilled for the characters – BAM something awful happens, BAM something worse happens, and KAPOW you live in fear that the worst thing could happen. Once you’ve read it you will know what I’m talking about but annoyingly, and to avoid spoilers, I can’t say anymore than BAM, BAM and KAPOW to explain how it felt to read. Eloquent eh?

In summary – Whispers in the Dark is a superb follow-up to A Wash of Black. Chris McDonald has again written an engaging and exciting story featuring DI Piper. He’s definitely one to watch…

Whispers in the Dark is published by Red Dog Press on November 14th 2020. Buy your copy direct from the publisher: https://www.reddogpress.co.uk/product-page/whispers-in-the-dark

Or from Amazon: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Whispers-Dark-Erika-Piper-Book-ebook/dp/B0889SP137

Or you can find Whispers in the Dark on the Online Blanket Fort shop* here: https://uk.bookshop.org/shop/BlanketFort

*As well as supporting independent bookstores, I will receive a small commission for any books bought through bookshop.org

Thank you again to the publisher and to Chris for having me on this tour and for providing me with an advance e-copy of the novel for review. This review forms my honest and unbiased opinion.

Red Dog Press on Twitter @RedDogTweets

Chris McDonald on Twitter @cmacwritescrime

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