Described as having "perfected the psychological thriller" (Bookseller), Sophie Hannah deserves plenty of praise forKind Of Cruel, a chilling novel which takes fear and suspense to a whole new level.
When Amber Hewerdine consults a hypnotherapist as a last resort, she doesn't expect that anything much will change. She doesn't expect it to help with her chronic insomnia ... or to hear herself, under hypnosis, saying words that mean nothing to her: "Kind, cruel, kind of cruel". Words she has seen somewhere before, if only she could remember where ...
She also doesn't expect to be arrested two hours later in connection with the brutal murder of Katharine Allen, a woman she's never heard of
Even though this is the 7th in the Spilling CID series, I haven't read any of the others and found I still knew what was going on. So please if that is the only reason you aren't going to pick up this book, forget it. In the Press Release I received for this book the Sunday Express said
"Crime novels are often dismissed in literary circles for not being literary enough. Yet Kind of Cruel is exactly the intelligent, reflective and stunningly written novel that has literary critics 'swooning' and judging panels lining up to reward."When I read this quote I thought can this novel really be that good? It is. The thought which has gone into the process of writing this book must of been exhaustive, the storyline is so well developed between the array of characters that when the explanations came out about the killer they were pages and pages long. Linked so closely that you couldn't see the connections throughout the book until the very end. A lot of reviews say that they had no idea who the murderer was until the very end. Unfortunately I did, however because of the intricate plot lines I hadn't realised the full story or in fact the full potential of this characters skills. So even though I guessed the killer the ending was extremely satisfying.
The only reason the book didn't achieve 5 stars was because there was a lot of characters to get my head around at the start of the book which I felt made reading it a tad slow. Once you have your head round who everyone is you begin to become engrossed. I really liked the characters Nonie and Dinah, they bring the story together and also add a little bit of humour all the way through. They have very specific ways which they like to adhere to and often tell Amber off for certain things that they like a certain way. Near the end of the novel they become more than just children and become vital in solving the murders.
There were some very infuriating characters in the novel, one of which was Jo, Ambers sister-in-law, she has a very bossy persona which is taken out on everyone she knows. When Jo and her family disappear one Christmas for the whole day no one has any idea where they went and no one ever mentions it. This is where Kind of Cruel starts and Amber is determined to find out the secret that Jo is hiding by running away. The control she has over her family is baffling to Amber and because she has only married into the family she is the only one who might be able to mention the unmentionable.
I've been fairly vague with my discussion of characters because I don't want to give anything away. This is a brilliant book which I would recommend to any crime fans.