Akin to Murder: The Inspector Faro Series

Written by Alanna Knight
Review by Valerie Loh

It is 1864, and Detective Sergeant Jeremy Faro is counting his blessings. He has what many would consider an ideal family life with his loving, pregnant and devoted wife, Lizzie, and his intelligent, growing stepson, Vince. When a manhunt ensues for a convicted wife killer, John McLaw, Faro’s calm existence is rocked. Family harmony fractures as the chase narrows and Faro is faced with another mystery to solve regarding the death and hasty burial of a woman who died in a poorhouse, her sister’s accident and then the disappearance of her maid, Tibbie. Faro is working against time to solve the mysteries behind the murders and possibly discover a common link, whilst under the command of a very driven and jealous Detective Inspector Gosse.

The setting of the changing shape of Victorian Edinburgh is a very atmospheric and haunting backdrop to this dark tale of murders, with the threat of the hangman’s noose hovering over the hunted, convicted murderer, John McLaw. His dramatic escape by a strike of lightning hitting his prison van gave him a second chance, but only if he had help. The weather plays no small part in setting the tone of the chase. The complex relationships add depth to this intriguing mystery as Faro works tirelessly to discover the truth behind the murders, yet all the time he is hiding secrets that, once revealed, would damage his career, his marriage and the future of his much-loved stepson.

This book (the 18th in the series) has many twists and turns as it explores the depths of the complex relationships of the characters within its covers. It shows that sometimes doing the wrong thing for the correct reason can bring just reward, but at a cost. This is a thoroughly engaging and satisfying read.