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Desecration (Brooke and Daniel Book 1) Kindle Edition
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David Morrell, New York Times bestselling author of Murder as a Fine Art and author of over 40 novels
"A riveting exploration of the dark side of the human heart"
New York Times Bestselling Author CJ Lyons
"In a book which takes the reader on a journey to hell and back, J.F. Penn demonstrates her huge talent for conveying the depths of human depravity."
Amazon #1 Bestseller, Rachel Abbott
About the Author
- ASIN : B00GKR1PII
- Publisher : Curl Up Press (December 18, 2013)
- Publication date : December 18, 2013
- Language : English
- File size : 1073 KB
- Simultaneous device usage : Unlimited
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 266 pages
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #975 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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At 266 pages, it’s the perfect length. My current pet peeve is that mysteries and thrillers have become way too long, as if the publishers have told the writers they want a certain page count. This unnecessary padding slows those stories down. J.F. Penn, on the other hand, has produced a tightly written thriller that delivers exactly what you need for a satisfying read.
Penn’s writing is authoritative and I found myself wondering how much of the subject she wrote about is true (pretty horrifying if so). I plan to look this up when I have more time.
The gore was a bit excessive for my personal taste (I’m squeamish), especially towards the end, but other readers might be just fine with it so I would never subtract stars for that reason.
The heartrending story of Jamie Brooks, a London Detective Superintendent who is trying her best to serve the people and be there for her incapacitated and terminally ill daughter with a brilliant mind who is in hospice care. Jamie struggles to keep a balance between her police duties, her intense wish to be with her daughter and fulfill her daughter Polly’s wish to be a dancer by attending Tango dance sessions.
When she starts to investigate the death of Jenna, a beautiful heiress she discovers facts that are shocking and hard to believe. She stumbles across the macabre world of the art form that uses human bodies and unearths more and more gruesome details about so-called human body art form that is practiced by desecrating the human body. Jamie is shocked and repulsed when she sees a female body that is in the process of desecration.
Even before she can recover from Polly’s death, she has to deal with the discovery of live human sacrifices that are reminiscent of Josef Mengele’s cruel acts against humanity. After Polly’s body is stolen, Jamie’s crusade becomes personal. She takes the help of Blake Daniel of the British Museum (a psychic reader of objects who was introduced to me in Day of the Vikings) and sets out to solve the mystery, recover Polly’s body and bring the villains to justice at the risk to her own life.
Desecration deals with the dark aspects of human psyche and has the readers wondering about the mental and emotional make-up of such people. It also brings forth the outstanding capacity of the author to historically research all the relevant facts about the story and be absolutely accurate about most things as she tells us in her account at the end of the book. Joanna has made the character of Jamie so down to earth and one in which the reader can believe.
While book is entirely different from the ARKANE books, it is a magnificent book in its own right. I am waiting to read the other books in this London Psychic series with a great deal of anticipation and eagerness.
The thing about J.F. Penn novels is that she always makes her heroine strong and imperfect which makes for a great read. I love that she hints of romantic intentions but restrains from going there. She paints a brilliant picture of scenes and characters that puts the reader right into the thick of things. When you think that things are going to get better they get a whole lot worse in ways you couldn't imagine.
I really appreciate all the research that went into writing this novel. This is the 2nd novel by J.F I've read and at the end I am always wondering if there could be some truth to what she has written. She tends to blur the line between fiction and reality, which I completely enjoy.
I can't wait to read her other books. My dilemma now is that I can't decide who is my favorite heroine Jamie Brooks or Morgan Sierra. I hope J.F. Penn keeps writing forever. Her books are a treat for readers.
Top reviews from other countries
I generally find there are three types of fictional psychics. Those who get lucky once then derail and misdirect the investigation as the story unfolds; those who are usually wrong and who exist merely for comic value; those who are unfailingly correct and who exist because an author couldn't be bothered to plot a proper investigative story so provide shortcuts when things get difficult. The psychic in this book (and presumably series though I won't be finding out) is of the latter type. Give him an object and he takes off his gloves before touching the item then gives angst-ridden flashes of history relating to the piece and the people who have been wronged in its presence. I guess I should be thankful we were spared the uneventful lives of the thousands of others who must have touched it over the years.
It's a shame as Joanna Penn's writing is very good and I would love to read something by her with a more credible plot.
Desecration certainly lives up to its name. It is a dark and graphic mystery/thriller that deals with plenty of unique and unusual albeit uncomfortable themes, including corpse art and dissection. Just how depraved humans can be is explored in this action packed and well researched story. The fascinating historical information was dropped in effortlessly. Who knew for example that necrophilia was only made illegal in the UK in 2003?
I was drawn into this book by the prologue, told in the first person, where we meet the antagonist and catch a glimpse of their chilling character. (I actually wish there was more of the book in this style.) We are then introduced to DS Jamie Brooke and follow her journey into the sick world she finds herself investigating. But this is so much more than a police procedural. Jamie is a tortured soul whose young daughter, Polly, is dying. Her story is heart-breaking and there are very moving scenes. When Polly dies, I wondered what would happen to the case as Jamie takes personal leave, but then there was a huge twist in the story. There is never a dull moment as the horrors of the case are combined with Jamie's personal life and her interesting partnership with Blake - a psychic who can read objects.
As I read the book, I wondered about the truth surrounding the bizarre, grisly acts discussed so the author's note at the end was enlightening, though unnerving. I was also glad to read that Jamie and Blake will be working together again soon.
So if you're looking to learn about dark but fascinating topics in an original thriller (this is definitely not a cozy mystery) where you will develop an emotional connection with the main character, this is the book for you!
This is extremely well written and you can tell the amazing amount of research that has gone into this book. The reader is overwhelmed with raw emotion as Jamie struggles to keep her work and personal life apart, and to keep her emotions in check for the sake of her dying daughter, Polly.
It is absolutely heartbreaking and SO real. If you've ever had to watch a relative dying, your brain, wrongfully but very persistently, still carries a little bit of hope that they will survive against all odds. The words used were perfect and the situation harrowing.
The descriptions of the macabre museum werre absolutely fascinating... but I've told you too much. Excellent dark thriller with graphic content. Definitely not for readers with weak stomachs!
It’s not just fast-paced, lots of mystery and conflict throughout, but Penn's prose and the summation of her characters is beautiful.
It starts in the Huntarian Museum, in the Royal College of Surgeons. The museum has a collection of specimens on human anatomy. In the very opening chapter a woman is murdered at at the museum, the collection providing a suitably garish and disturbing backdrop. Next we meet Jamie, a detective in the Metropolitan police, who is tasked with solving the woman’s murder, which in its surgical nature seems to be connected to the setting where it was carried out.
We go with Jamie on her journey to find the killer, from the West End where we meet some of London’s wealthiest aristocrats to East London, with artisans and artists. There are more gruesome scenes with plastination as art (where the water and fats in a cadaver are replaced with plastics to create a body that can be preserved and displayed). We also get an insight into the world of extreme body modification. Both subjects provide tension and interest to the developing story and characters, but Penn also delves deeper into these subjects. She asks questions about the body as art, about the right of the dead and about the living’s relationship with them.
So much in this world to think about and get lost in.