Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Review: Left for Dead by Caroline Mitchell (audio)

Title: Left for Dead
Author: Caroline Mitchell
Series: DI Amy Winter, #3
Narrator: Elizabeth Knowelden
Published: July 2020, Brilliance Audio
Length: 10 hours 4 minutes
Source: Publisher

A victim on display. A detective on the rails.

Shopping with her sister, DI Amy Winter is admiring a Valentine’s Day window display of a perfect bride encrusted in diamonds and resplendent in lace—until she notices blood oozing from the mannequin’s mouth.

This is no stunt. A post-mortem reveals the victim was left to die on her macabre throne for all to see. When a second victim is found, it emerges that both women were ‘Sugar Babes’ arranging dates with older men online—and Amy finds herself hunting an accomplished psychopath.

As she tracks down the killer, Amy’s instincts go into overdrive when the charismatic head of the agency behind the display makes no attempt to hide his fascination with her serial-killer parents. What exactly does he want from Amy? With her own world in freefall as her biological mother, Lillian Grimes, appeals her conviction, Amy pushes the boundaries of police procedure when a third ‘Sugar Babe’ disappears…Is she as much at risk as the killer’s victims?

My thoughts:  This is the third book in Caroline Mitchell's latest series featuring DI Amy Winters and I love it! This is such a gripping series - the books really grab you and hold your interest, though I will say, they are dark and a bit disturbing, so be forewarned!

While most books that are part of series these days can be read as stand-alones, I really feel strongly that this series should be read in it's entirety. DI Amy Winter's backstory is really what this whole series is based on and that is built and developed over the course of the series, getting bit by bit as the series goes on. Yes, there is some recap in each of the books, but not enough to really understand the full depth just who Amy Winter is.

DI Amy Winter is such a fierce to be reckoned with. She isn't afraid to go with her gut, even when that means she has to go against procedure to get the answers to solve a case. And on the case she is working on, she instinctively knows who is guilty right away, even though her colleagues have someone in custody already. It was up to her to figure out how to change their minds.

I loved that right away, we are privy to who the guilty person was. It was creepy being inside this person's head. But on the other hand, these are the parts I find so fascinating because we get to find out their motivations.

I love how the book is perfectly balanced between the case and Amy's personal life. With Lillian's trial fast approaching, Amy's stress is quite high. Lillian is always playing games - that is just her modus operandi. And with Amy's sisters wavering on their stance, it's got Amy worried. What is going to happen at the trial?

So much is set up for the next book and I cannot wait to see what happens. What I love about this series is that Caroline Mitchell so cleverly raises the tension at just the right moments. The book is fast-paced and the mini-cliffhangers at the end of some chapters just beg you to keep reading or listening. This is a series that just keeps getting better and I will be counting down the days until book 4 is released!

Audio thoughts: I was very happy to see that Elizabeth Knowelden was back to narrate book 3 in this series. I am a big fan of consistency, whenever possible, in series. I feel it brings continuity to the story and Elizabeth Knowelden certainly did that, as she was consistent with the voices and her tone. As dark and gritty as this story was, Elizabeth Knowelden really brought it to life with her narration and I hope she continues to be the narrator for as long as the series goes on.

Books in this series:
  1. Truth and Lies
  2. The Secret Child
  3. Left for Dead
  4. ???


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