It’s my stop on Book Birthday Blitz for Her Secret Past by Kerry Watts. Many thanks to Rachel of Rachel’s Random Resources for the invite.
Title: Her Secret Past (Detective Jessie Blake #1)
Author: Kerry Watts
Published on: 22 January 2020
Genre: Mystery and Thrillers | Police Procedural
Her Secret Past is the third book in Kerry Watts’ Detective Jessie Blake series.
On boxing day, the bodies of Malcolm and Jean Angus are found lying in a pool of blood in their kitchen. Their grandson Gordon is busy eating a sandwich at the table – the same table where his grandpa lies face down in a bowl. Gordon’s father Tommy is sitting on the sofa without a care in the world.
When Detective Jessie Blake enters the crime scene, she’s shocked by Gordon and Tommy’s behavior. She knows Tommy – they studied in the same school. Jessie and her team learn about a vicious dispute with a nearby landowner, Rachel Ferguson. When Jessie and her partner Dylan visit the neighbors, they act weird and when questioned about their whereabouts at the time of murder, they rudely tell the detectives to get out.
But as the detectives walk towards their car, Rachel calls them in and tells them of her traumatic past. The detectives return to the crime scene and find Tommy in handcuffs. He attacked the ME and had to be restrained. Gordon is nowhere to be seen.
Soon, Rachel becomes a prime suspect in the Angus’ murder case – because of her previous record. Rachel is trying her best to get away from her past. Meanwhile, Jessie’s ex-husband, Dan, is back in town and has a new girlfriend. Jessie wonders if she has to warn the girlfriend to stay away from Dan.
What a mind-blowing, spine-chilling, intriguing page turner! I was hooked onto the story and could not put it down until the end.
We have multiple PoVs here. Also, the story alternates between past and present. The past mainly deals with a young Alice helping her boyfriend in murdering her grandparents. They get caught and are sent to juvie prison. While Alice gets out sooner – as she was only an accomplice while her boyfriend spends a lot of years in prison. The present deals with the murder of Angus couple, their grandson’s disappearance and his possible role in their murder, Jessie’s abusive ex trying to create havoc (once again) in her life, and Rachel’s role in the Angus couple’s murder.
The creepiest part was that involving Gordon. When Jessie arrives at the crime scene, she finds him sitting calmly next to his grandpa’s dead body, eating a sandwich. He disappears from the crime scene and Jessie wonders if he had a hand in killing his grandparents. Soon, Jessie learns Gordon was diagnosed with autism/aspergers spectrum and has difficulty understanding emotions. Does this mean he could have murdered his grandparents without feeling remorse?
I found Jessie’s side story interesting – the one involving the return of her abusive ex in her life. He seems to have a girlfriend now and Jessie worries for her. He sends her messages – non-threatening ones but it still irks Jessie.
The mystery behind the murder and Rachel’s role in the murder case kept me guessing till the end. The story is peppered with unexpected twists and turns. This makes the story engrossing and keeps the reader hooked on – the feeling of “What happens next?”
I loved the ending. I never saw the one final and shocking twist coming. Excellent storytelling. Well-developed characters.
This book can be read as a standalone but if you ask me, I recommend you start from the beginning – you don’t want to miss out on all the mind-blowing suspense that’s built in the first two books, do you?
If you are a fan of gritty and gripping police procedural, recommend you to give Her Secret Past by Kerry Watts a try.
Giveaway to Win the Kindle copies of the 3 Detective Jessie Blake books (Open INT)
The books are:Heartlands, Her Missing Child & Her Secret Past by Kerry Watts.
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