Book Review: All Fall Down by M.J. Arlidge @mjarlidge @orionbooks

All Fall Down
A Helen Grace Thriller #9
M.J. Arlidge
Orion Fiction, June 2021
ISBN 978-1-4091-8842-1 (CA)
Paperback
Orion, June 2020
ISBN 978-1409188407 (US)
Hardcover

I’ve been a fan of this author since 2014 when Eeny Meeny, the first in this bestselling British series featuring Detective Inspector Helen Grace, was published.

All Fall Down, the 9th entry in the series set in the coastal town of Southampton, has been described as Chilling, Mesmerizing and Gripping, descriptions I’m hard pressed to disagree with.

Eight years ago a group of five teenagers from a local high-school, taking part in a Duke of Edinburgh challenge, were tortured physically and mentally by Daniel King, a man who held them captive in an isolated house.  Four of them escaped but the fifth was murdered by King, who set fire to his house and fled.  He was never found or brought to justice.

Now, after receiving a frightening phone call telling him he has one hour left to live, Justin Lanning, one of the four survivors of that torturous ordeal, is found murdered. It isn’t long before D.I. Grace and her squad of detectives start to wonder if King is back and his plans are to kill the remaining survivors.

As the Police try to warn the other survivors, the perpetrator appears to be one step ahead.  D.I. Grace’s frustrations grow as her superiors, pushing for a quick result, question her decisions.  The killer continues to challenge the detectives, one of whom has become Helen’s lover.  He’s ambitious and reckless and Helen begins to wonder if she’s made an error in judgement. This baffling case however is her priority.  But will she figure out the truth before more lives are lost?

D.I. Grace is a strong woman you quickly come to admire.  She’s multi-faceted, something of a loner, who would like nothing better that to have a solid relationship, a man in her life.  Over the previous books she’s had her share of self-doubt, and recriminations, but she’s fought hard to be where she is and I look forward to spending time with D.I. Grace and her team with each new novel.

Next up for D.I. Grace is Truth or Dare.   I can’t wait!

Respectfully submitted,

Reviewed by guest reviewer Moyra Tarling, August 2021.

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