‘What if I told you,’ he said, ‘that I believe my mother’s life to be in danger?’
Robertson Bennet returns to Edinburgh after a 25 year absence in search of his parents and his inheritance. But both have disappeared. A quick, routine police check should be enough – and Detective Inspector Helen Birch has enough on her plate trying to help her brother, Charlie, after an assault in prison. But all her instincts tell her not to let this case go. And so she digs.
George and Phamie Bennet were together for a long time. No one can ever really know the secrets kept between husband and wife. But as Birch slowly begins to unravel the truth, terrible crimes start to rise to the surface.
Cover Your Tracks is the 3rd book in the DI Helen Birch crime fiction series. Usually I like to start a series at the beginning but equally on numerous occasions I have commented about how crime fiction, ever when part of a series is very readable as standalone fiction and this was no exception.
This was an interesting read, unique insofar as very early on the reader was given an indication of the crime, the perpetrator and the victim, more emerged obviously as we followed the investigation but the story was almost told retrospectively. What began as a missing persons inquiry became so much more as DI Birch literally dug deeper.
Because of the way the plot was formed this book started slowly, picking up pace as the story progressed. I liked the writing, told in the third person narrative, following DI Birch but interspersed with newspaper articles, initially not linking to the current story, but offering the reader a taste of what was coming. The story and the articles merged later on as the timelines converged and this worked very well in the telling of the story.
The crime was interesting and that and the investigation read very authentically. As this was the third in a series there were aspects of Di Birch’s story that were clearly part of an ongoing storyline. The author covered this well and the story was clear, but it is these developing characters that are a strength in crime fiction and I am sure this will be a welcome instalment for fans of this series, as well as a compelling read for newbies like me!
Recommended for fans of Crime Fiction, with a strong police investigator lead. I am thinking the Helen Fields (DI Callanach) series, the M J Arlidge (DI Helen Grace) series and maybe even Robert Gailbraith (Cormoran Strike). Or just fans of crime fiction and good writing in general!
About the Author
Claire Askew is a poet, novelist and the Writer in Residence at the University of Edinburgh. Her debut novel in progress was the winner of the 2016 Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize, and longlisted for the 2014 Peggy Chapman – Andrews (Bridport) Novel Award. Claire holds a PhD in Creative Writing from the University of Edinburgh and has won a variety of accolades for her work, including the Jessie Kesson Fellowship and a Scottish Book Trust New Writers Award. All the Hidden Truths was longlisted for two CWA Daggers: Gold (best novel) and John Creasey (best debut).
Her debut poetry collection, This changes things, was published by Bloodaxe in 2016 and shortlisted for the Edwin Morgan Poetry Award and a Saltire First Book Award. In 2016 Claire was selected as a Scottish Book Trust Reading Champion, and she works as the Scotland tutor for women’s writing initiatives Write Like a Grrrl and #GrrrlCon. Cover Your Tracks is her third novel.
I read this book as part of a blogtour, thank you to Jenny at Hodder Books for inviting me to be involved and sending me a proof copy of the book to read. You can see what others are saying by checking out the accounts below.
Thanks as always for visiting this page and taking the time to read. Please do share on social media. Thank You!