M.J. Arlidge - The Doll's House
"The book flits from the perspective of different characters, keeping this reader interested and wanting to get back to find out what has happened."
A woman wakes. Immediately she knows she's not in the bed she slept in. It's just the beginning of her nightmare.
Across town, a child discovers a woman's body buried beneath the beach. Then another victim is found. Neither friends nor family had even reported either woman missing. How could their killer be getting away with murder?
It is chillingly evident that Detective Inspector Helen Grace is hunting a monster that is not just twisted, but clever and careful and as Helen struggles to understand the killer's motivation she realizes that time might be running out for someone still alive.
Helen Grace is again hunting a serial killer, whilst still facing her nemesis and boss, Ceri Harwood. Young girls are being abducted and killed and Grace has seen a connection that has been missed by the other detectives. Grace seems to be hailed and revered by all bar her boss, yet the reasons her being held in such high esteem have not been made clear.
I enjoy the way Arlidge manages to throw into the mix a good plot, characters that develop, but also the internal politics and bureaucracy, which gave the book a realistic feel. The book flits from the perspective of different characters, keeping this reader interested and wanting to get back to find out what has happened. I would have preferred to have had more clues so that I could have guessed who the killer was as I felt the crux of the solution was 'dropped' on me right at the end of the book.
Arlidge is a great writer, but I did feel that 'The Dolls House' wasn't quite on par with his previous two books which were gripping and sublime. The name of the book itself felt irrelevant and only had a mention towards the end.
However, despite these small niggles I was unable to put the book down, thoroughly enjoyed reading it and am look forward to seeing where Arlidge takes DI Grace in her next outing.
Reviewed by: H.A.