All Saints: Murder on the Mersey (Mersey Murder Mysteries Book 2) Kindle Edition
|Length: 594 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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The story begins with very well built characters. Knowing this is a murder mystery, I’m already guessing which of these people will be the evil doers. It seemed none of those upstanding citizens could possibly be. By the time the second victim is found, the story explodes into a whole new set of directions. Everyone is suspect, and with good reason.
Murder on the Mersey is not a simple mystery, but has a complex plot with more twists and turns and shocks that left me always wondering who the perpetrator could be? Then came the finale when the reader learns whodunnit, and this happens in stages as we learn with the detectives that the culprit was right under their noses. I love it when a story has such twists. Porter does a great job of letting us get to know his characters but never once tips us off to who might be the murderer till the suspense crescendos.
If you like stories that take you right into the thick of it all, the murders and how they happen as they happen, the investigations, the cover ups, then this book is for you. But one caveat: This story is not for the squeamish. Porter holds nothing back. He’s a champion of laying it all out in detail. If that’s your reading preference, then you will enjoy this story.
Father Gerald Byrne, along with his sister, grew up in Speke Hill, an orphanage that was run by the Roman Catholic Church. He developed a deep interest in theology and the Church which eventually brought him into the priesthood. After years of traveling all over the world it also brought him full circle back to St. Luke's where he would be not only their priest but also the priest of Speke Hill. But, shortly after his arrival the murders started. Bodies are being placed in various cemeteries after being totally disembowel and mutilated.
This book took me down a very winding road! As much as I tried to determine who was carrying out the brutal murders, the harder it was for me to justify my suspicions. And at the end... I was totally surprised. As always, Brian L. Porter has written another book that can't be put down. I can never get enough of his books. He has a Stephen King/Dean Kunze/Jeffrey Deaver frame of mind when he writes putting him right up there in their class of authors.
Father Gerald Byrne returns to Liverpool after several years away to be the pastor of St. Luke’s. Along with that responsibility comes also being the chaplain to Speke Hill Orphanage. Father Byrne was placed there as a seven-year old child along with his sister following the deaths of their parents.
Detective Inspector Andy Ross, Sergeant Clarissa “Izzy” Drake and Detective Constable Derek McLennan of the Murder Investigation Team, the portly pathologist Dr. William Nugent are all called to the scene of a horrifying mutilation and murder in St. Matthew’s graveyard. The resident priest, a Father Michael Donovan who found him, could not identify the man. When the victim’s fingerprints show him to be one Matthew “Razor” Remington whose most recent arrest was for sexual abuse, a potential for the murder is uncovered.
The team now has several people that they wish to interview: Remington’s co-workers, friends, acquaintances, and the woman he raped and so on. Hopefully, this will give them some viable leads to follow.
When another man in killed in a similar manner on the following day in the St. Mark’s graveyard, Andy and Izzy go to interview the rector Simon Blake and his wife Cilla. The wife saw a white van outside the church. It is a slim but rather elusive lead. After Simon suggests that there may be two killers due to the weight of hoisting the unfortunate man to his death, the CSI discovers a set of small footprints. The murderer now turns into two and the second set belongs to a woman.
When the second man turns out to be one Mark Proctor, a teacher at Speke Hill, our story returns to Father Gerald Byrne. For he was also a student and rival of Proctor while they were both at the school.
The reader will recall that the first victim, Remington, was also a student at Speke Hill.
The reader is given tantalizing little clues as to the identity of the killer and the reason why. Then a third man is killed and the killer appears to have made some mistakes with this murder. As the book now speeds towards a conclusion, the suspense is building. Will the police catch the killer before anyone else is murdered?
There are a few omitted words and problems with grammar in this book. It doesn’t detract from the story very much, but they are there nonetheless. More irritating was the mixing up of the manes of places and people. St. Luke’s became St. Mark’s and Mark Proctor became Mark Bolton. Overall the book is very well written (save for the obvious mistakes), and plotted. It is written with the suspense starting out immediately, and continuing throughout the book. I enjoy the descriptions of the relationships between Andy’s team members and especially the interplay between Andy and Izzy. I like this novel very much and look forward to reading the next one in the series.