‘A Time To Kill’ by Stephen Puleston

A Time to Kill : An exciting British crime thriller (Inspector Drake  Book 5) by [Puleston, Stephen]


A missing person.

Investigating the disappearance of local antiques dealer, Harry Jones, is not high on DI Ian Drake’s priority list. He has more important things to spend his time on than looking for a man who has probably just walked out on his wife. Until they find Harry’s dead body…

Shot at close range and dumped like rubbish.

Drake knows they are dealing with a cold-bloodied killer. But the valleys of Snowdoniaare an unlikely place for a murderer to hide out, and Harry an unlikely victim. As the investigation unfolds, Drake discovers a web of intrigue surrounding Harry, and business links with the criminal underworld.

A killer hidden in plain sight.

When another murder takes place that strikes at the heart of the community Drake is convinced the killer lies closer to home. And when two key witnesses disappear, Drake faces a race against time to bring the killer to justice, before he strikes again… 


My Review

This is the second book written by Stephen Puleston that I have had the pleasure of reading and reviewing.  I really enjoyed the first one and I just knew that I would love ‘A Time To Kill’.  I was not to be disappointed as I absolutely blinking well loved reading ‘A Time To Kill’ but more about that in a bit.

I really took to Inspector Drake from the start.  He is an experienced detective, who lives with a mental illness.  Drake suffers from OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) and he doesn’t particularly hide the fact.  It’s really interesting to see and read about somebody with a mental illness, which he doesn’t allow to take over his life.  Drake is in charge of an experienced team of detectives, who seem to respect him.  Drake is one of those bosses that you would like to work for in that he mucks in to do his share of the work, whereas some would just delegate the more menial tasks.  Drake listens to his team and takes all suggestions on board, even if he doesn’t necessarily agree with them.  Drake can be impulsive and he can place himself in unnecessary danger.  As is often common with lead detectives, Drake has a somewhat complicated and tangled personal life.  He is a father of two gorgeous girls and he is divorced from his wife.  I got the impression that the split wasn’t straightforward and the split wasn’t entirely without its problems.  There does seem to be a bit of animosity there.  Drake hasn’t let the divorce put him off women though and this book sees him develop feelings for another woman.  Without work, Drake hasn’t really got a life.  He goes to work early and gets home late, which doesn’t allow much time for fun. 

My first thought on finishing ‘A Time To Kill’ was ‘wow’.  As I already stated above, I absolutely loved reading Stephen’s first book and I just knew that I would love ‘A Time To Kill’.  So it proved to be.  I read the synopsis of ‘A Time To Kill’ and I was immediately intrigued.  I was hooked on the book from the first word on the first page and the book had me under its spell until I closed the back cover. .  I binge read the book, which really gave me a sense of the urgency of the investigation and a sense of how tense the atmosphere was.  I became so addicted to reading this book that I had to take my Kindle everywhere with me as I couldn’t put the book down.  I just had to read on to find out what further secrets and lies came tumbling out of the closet and how the investigation progressed.  I even begrudged having to take my two Labradors out which , as you can imagine, didn’t go down well.  The writing style is such that I really did feel as though I was another member of Drake’s team and a part of the investigation I also loved the way in which the author captured the village mentality of those who lived roundabout the victim.  On the surface the village might look pretty and uncomplicated but scratch the surface and a whole different side to the village emerges.  The characters were so well described that I actually found myself thinking about them as if they were real.  On more than one occasion, I found myself arguing with different characters and talking to them as if they were sat next to me.  I know ‘A Time To Kill’ is fictional but I find that if I really enjoy a book I tend to ‘live’ the story so to speak.  When you read a book by Stephen Puleston you are guaranteed one heck of a read, with lots of twists and turns.

In short I absolutely adored reading ‘A Time To Kill’.  I would heartily recommend Stephen and his books to other readers and particularly to those who enjoy reading police procedurals.  I can’t wait to read what comes next from Stephen Puleston.  Here’s hoping that there isn’t going to be too long a wait but whilst I wait I will content myself with catching up with his past releases.  The score on the Ginger Book Geek board is a well deserved 5* out of 5*.

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