Title: The Thames Path Killer (Detective Rob Miller #1)
Author: Biba Pearce
Published on: 2 June 2021
Genre: Mystery and Thrillers | Police Procedural
The Thames Path Killer is the first book in Biba Pearce‘s Detective Rob Miller series.
A deranged serial killer is targeting brides-to-be. His victims were engaged recently. He initially stalks them and then attacks when they least expect it. Detective Rob Miller is asked to investigate the death of Julie Andrews. Julie was found sexually assaulted and killed on her way home. Miller initially believes this was revenge by jilted lover. But when two more bodies pop up within days of Julie’s murder, Miller and his team believes they have a serial killer at play.
The towpath was secluded along this stretch, which was why he’d chosen it. On the right-hand side was the river, swollen and about to burst its banks, while on the left, an impenetrable tangle of trees and foliage backed on the allotments. There was nobody around thanks to the weather and high tide. Except her, of course.
The Thames Path Killer is a smashing series debut. Initially published as The Surrey Stalker ( as this is what the press calls him), this book is a must-read for lovers of gritty and gripping police procedurals. The fourth book in this series – The Box Hill Killer – is releasing on 21st July 2021 and having received an ARC from the publishers, I thought why not binge read the first three books.
First things first, the readers must be warned of the explicit content in the story. The killer sexually abuses his victims before killing them. The details are thorough and might not be suitable for all.
The story begins with the killer stalking Julie. The poor girl has no clue what’s in store for her when she chooses to walk instead of taking a bus home. Meanwhile Detective Rob Miller is in bed with his fiancé Yvette when he receives a call from his boss. There’s been a murder near the Thames river bank and Rob is asked to take charge of the case. Rob’s been trying hard for a promotion and this opportunity is a fast forward way to reach the top.
When Rob arrives at the crime scene, he’s horrified by the murder – not discussing the details here (too gory). He has to be the bearer of bad news to the young woman’s fiancé. He wonders if this was the work of a jilted lover. Rob meets his friend Tony (a profiler) days later. When Rob discusses the case with Tony, he learns this is the work of a serial killer. Young woman who are recently engaged and planning their wedding are being targeted.
Halfway through the story, Jo Maguire (from a nearby station) joins the team. Jo and Rob form quite an impressive sleuthing team. Rob is not-so-happily engaged to Yvette. When he sees Tony as a father of two, he too longs for children – but Yvette is quite firm on not wanting to have children after marriage. There’s also a slight attraction to Jo – mainly because they have a lot of similarities.
The spotlight is not only on solving the murders and catching the serial killer, but also on Rob’s personal life. In the latter half of the story, his personal and professional life become entwined, creating more problems.
Some of the details – torture before the killings – are dark, twisted and gory. Having said that, the storytelling is simply mind-blowing. The suspense kept me on the edge of my seat and I couldn’t put this book down until the end. As a first in the series, the spotlight is usually on character introduction. But in The Thames Path Killer, character introduction and solving the mystery, both are given equal preference.
The Thames Path Killer by Biba Pearce is a gripping, engrossing and mind-blowing start to a brand new police procedural series. I am looking forward to reading the next three books (as of writing this review; I am sure there will be more in the future) of this series.
Not quite in the mind for gory stuff right now, but sounds an exciting read.