‘Cut his eyes out, so he has. What kind of monster could…. Cut his eyes out?’
The brutal murder of ten-year old Callum Bradley sent shockwaves across Scotland. But weeks have stretched on with no solid leads except for a 999 call which may have hinted the boy’s mutilation and murder.
However, the call was made three weeks before the crime took place. The caller, a resident at an Edinburgh care home, is drifting in and out of lucidity due to dementia. It is a dead end to his colleagues, though Sergeant Don Colyear cannot let it drop. When another murder horrifies the city, the clock is suddenly ticking for Colyear and he is drawn far away from his usual beat, to hunt down a violent killer before it is too late.
I picked this book up one evening I had just finished a good book and wasn’t sure what I wanted to read next this was the first thing I reached, then, I couldn’t put it down I found myself reading until the early hours of the morning, finishing the following day. This is book 2 in this series I haven’t read book one but this is a book that you can read on it’s own. Although personally I do like to read books in order. I may now have to get book one to see what happened.
Sergeant Don Colyear is a Community Police Officer on the outskirts of Edinburgh, he manages a small team of officers and seems quite content with his job. Not a great deal happens, as long as he keeps his paperwork up to date, most of the work is dealing with local robberies, vandalism as well as anti social behaviour so nothing too dramatic. Until a colleague he trained with Alyson who is a DC with CID asks him if he could do her a favour. A phone call had gone through to triple nine from someone who has been given the nickname Mr Beeswax, mainly because when he is asked questions when calling he tells them to mind there Beeswax. When he calls he says about a victim losing his eyes, there are just two problems with the call, the gentleman calling is in a care home with Dementia, the crime he mentions matches one that has happened to a boy who has been murdered three weeks after the call, his eyes removed, it’s a case that CID are desperate to solve.
When Don and Alyson go to interview Mr Beeswax whose real name is Martin he is not lucid and no way can they ask him anything. But Don asks the care home if they can call him if he has a lucid moment. Which they do, Don is so good with Martin when he is with him, the relationship they have when he is lucid is a bit like a surrogate son as Martins only son lives in America so he doesn’t get to see him.
Tension is high with CID, this case really needs solving and the pressure is on everyone, Alyson’s boss DCI Kate Templeton takes no nonsense I love the way every time she comes into the room for a briefing the door slams against the wall. It’s not long before another crime is committed this time a priest who has had so many stab wounds to his face, but has also had his ears removed. The pressure is rising could the two crimes be linked? When Martin makes a comment about god and hearing Don thinks there is something there, as he looks at Aly’s paperwork he starts to look into a few things himself.
When Don tells Aly what he has been doing she is non too pleased, but things begin to move pretty fast, Aly tries not to tell her boss about Don, but that becomes impossible when a new development happens, Don may be out of a job at the end. I didn’t see the end coming. The past can haunt you, sometimes it can’t be buried, sometimes it just takes a trigger to set you off on the wrong path.
What I loved about this book was the characters, the crimes are tough. But the author has managed to put some lightness into the story, as Don goes out for a drink one night with his colleagues a bit of romance may be in the air, although it’s not plain sailing with some amusing incidents.
I couldn’t read this quick enough, the author just manages to deal with the deaths, but also puts the care and thought into the relationship with Martin, who could have been so easy to just dismiss, I found that so touching. I also loved reading about Edinburgh and Leith places I’ve never visited but would love to see, it covered the harder areas that have become rundown after mines closing down, the weather, the culture. You could picture everything in your mind.
I look forward to see where Don Colyear ends up next I absolutely loved this book, if you like a good procedural with some great characters, some humour despite the horrific murders. Then grab this book you will not be disappointed.
I would like to thank the publishers @AllisonandBusby for a gifted copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own and in no way influenced.
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ out of ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ read go buy a copy of this support an Indie author and Indie publishers. It is available to buy direct from http://www.Allison and busby.com
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Stuart Johnstone is a former police officer who, since turning his hand to writing, has been selected as an emerging writer by the Edinburgh UNESCO City of Literature Trust, and published in an anthology curated by Stephen King. Johnstone lives in Scotland.
Website Links: storystuart.com
Social media: @story_stuart