Book Reviews

Out of Bounds: A Karen Pirie Thriller by Val McDermid

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List Price: £8.99


Paperback: 496 Pages.

Published: 26 January 2017 by Sphere

ISBN: 0751561436

EAN: 9780751561432

When a teenage joyrider crashes a stolen car and ends up in a coma, a routine DNA test could be the key to unlocking the mystery of a twenty-year-old murder inquiry. Detective Chief Inspector Karen Pirie is an expert at solving the unsolvable. With each cold case closed, justice is served. So, finding the answer should be straightforward, but it's as twisted as the DNA helix itself. Meanwhile Karen finds herself irresistibly drawn to another case, one that she has no business investigating. And as she pieces together decades-old evidence, Karen discovers the most dangerous kinds of secrets. Secrets that someone is willing to kill for... This paperback book has 484 pages and measures: 19.7 x 12.6 x 2.6cm


5.0 Stars5.0 Stars5.0 Stars5.0 Stars5.0 Stars  by Anne

Excellent read which grips from the start

Karen Pirie is that stock character in crime fiction, a maverick detective who doesn't know when to stop investigating and who is a thorn in the side of her bosses. That is the only way in which Karen is a stereotype though as she connects a number of cases and tries to make her way through the ethical and moral dilemmas that the investigations throw up. Challenged by circumstances in her personal life, which occurred at the end of the previous book, she wanders the streets at night and disconnects from many of her colleagues but it makes her more focussed on the cases she is investigating.

This is an excellent crime novel which gives the reader plenty to think about. It is cleverly plotted and the story grabbed me from the first page, engaging my interest all the way to the end. Karen is a strong character who disregards authority and, mostly, gets away with it in manner that I wish that I could emulate ! In fact, this is a book filled with strong women in important roles who play a vital part as the story progresses - this makes a pleasant change from all those novels out there which seem to feel that there is a quota of one for major female characters.

This is an involving read and the author ties up all the strands neatly by the end. The characterisations are good and Karen is a complex and engaging lead. I liked the way in which the author showed the difficulties of modern policing as new methods reopen old mysteries. This is one in a series but I shouldn't let that stop you reading it even if you haven't read the others as it stands alone well. I received a free copy of this book from the publishers via NetGalley.

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