Crime: Die of Shame by Mark Billingham
Little, Brown, €18.99
Mark Billingham knows how to draw his reader in. The bombastic title of his latest novel, Die of Shame is enough to prove this.
The novel is a slow-burning one with a very grisly murder and a whole host of suspicious characters at the fore of the investigation.
The question is, who killed Heather, and more importantly, why?
Nicola Tanner, a detective, is keen to get to the bottom of the murder. Heather was a member of a therapy group for ex-addicts. When she is found brutally murdered in her apartment, Tanner looks first to the group.
Could one of these ex-addicts be responsible?
Die of Shame is an excellently written novel, and Billingham expertly drip-feeds information in each chapter. All of the characters offer something intriguing, including detective Tanner.
Her sub-plot is nicely tied up with the overarching theme of addiction.
A thrilling whodunit, where none of the characters are clear of blame until the dramatic ending, Billingham writes them brilliantly: they all have their own lives and their own demons lurking in the background.
They are also a surprisingly diverse collection of characters, something that many crime writers could look to Billingham to learn.
This is a thrilling and entertaining read, replete with suspicion, confusion and accusations, and despite a slightly disappointing ending, one of the best crime novels of the year so far. Shocking, frightening, gripping.
Sunday Indo Living