A skeletal body is unearthed in a wooded area of Peterborough, Cambridgeshire. DI James Bliss, together with DC Penny Chandler, investigate the case and discover that the young, female victim had been relocated from its original burial site.
A witness is convinced that a young female was struck by a vehicle back in the summer of 1990, and that police attended the scene. However, no record exists of either the accident or the reported victim. As the case develops, two retired police officers are murdered. The two are linked with others who were on duty at the time a road accident was reported.
As Bliss and Chandler delve deeper into the investigation, they start to question whether senior officers may have been involved in the murder of the young women who was buried in the woods.
As each link in the chain is put under duress, so is Bliss who clashes with superiors and the media.
When his team receives targeted warnings, Bliss will need to decide whether to drop the case or to pursue those responsible. Will Bliss walk away in order to keep his career intact or will he fight no matter what the cost? And is it possible the killer is much closer than they imagined?
Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Bad to the Bone.
I love police procedurals but there are times when they can get a bit dry and humorless, leaving me wanting more. Books like Bad to the Bone breathe new life into a sometimes stale genre and remind me why I’m such a fan of these types of novels. It was full of dark humor, well drawn characters and plenty of surprises to knock me off balance.
Bliss and Chandler are partners and they had such a warm, genuine relationship. Forder did an excellent job of developing their friendship and I liked that they had each other’s backs at any cost. Bliss’ backstory was especially well crafted and by the end I felt like I had a true sense of what type of person he is.
The pacing was steady as they investigated a cold case after bones are found in a semi remote locale. When this old case starts to show links with current happenings, things get really tense and complicated. This was a character driven book with a very strong lead and a writing style that kept true to police procedures while adding some much needed humor to break things up. It’s an excellent beginning to a new series, I could even see a prequel at some point as Bliss’ history was fascinating.
Overall rating: 4/5
Thanks to Bloodhound Books for my review copy.
About the Author:
On 1st February 2017, Tony signed to Bloodhound Books, who will publish his new edgy crime thriller Bad to the Bone this spring. It is the first in a series.
Later this year, Tony’s second novel for Bloodhound Books, Degrees of Darkness, featuring ex-detective Frank Rogers, will be published.
Tony has been writing stories since childhood, but it was only when he won a short story competition judged by an editor from Pan Books, that he realised he might actually be half decent at this writing business.
The story, Gino’s Bar and Grille, went on to be published in Dark Voices 2, part of the celebrated Pan Book of Horror series. Three further short story sales followed: Book End, published in Dark Voices 4, Character Role, in FEAR magazine, and finally A Grim Story, which featured in A Rattler’s Tale.
During a book singing for Dark Voices 2, Tony was seated next to author Brian Lumley. At one point, Tony revealed to Brian that he felt out of place alongside all the proper writers. Brian then told Tony something he has never forgotten: “The moment you sat down and pulled a story out of your imagination and put it to paper, you became a proper writer.”
Subsequently, Tony began to focus on novel writing. He admits that his initial attempts were exploratory and somewhat derivative, although there was some interest from an agent – who oddly enough turned out to be Brian Lumley’s wife, Dorothy.
Tony wrote Degrees of Darkness, which he was happy with. He wasn’t so happy with a follow-up, so that never saw the light of day.
As a part-time writer with a full-time job, plus some ill-health, life got in the way and, although Tony continued writing, it took a back seat to making a living.
This year, however, Tony has been inspired by new ideas, and has been working hard on two new books, both of which should be completed in 2017. In the meantime, he hopes you enjoy Bad to the Bone, introducing DI James Bliss and DC Penny Chandler.