In the Gare do Oriente, a body sits, slumped, in a stationary train. A high-profile man appears to have died by throwing himself repeatedly against the glass. But according to witnesses, he may not have done this of his own accord.
Lisbon 2021. A small percentage of the population are diagnosed as Gifted. Along with the power comes stigma and suspicion.
In a prejudiced city, Gifted Inspector Isabel Reis is hiding her own secrets while putting her life on the line to stop an ingenious killer.
Thanks to Jenny at Hodder for inviting me to be involved in the blog tour for this debut work of crime fiction. Intrigued by the blurb I eagerly agreed and thank you Jenny for the beautiful hardback copy of the book.
A dense and detailed work of crime fiction set in Portugal. Annual testing idenitifes those members of the population who are ‘gifted’, that is they have telepathy or telekinetic skills. These skills are number graded in strength and closely monitored. To be gifted is stigmatising, such people are largley perceived to present a threat to others, there are regulations around their gift and to use their gift without consent is a crime.
Inspector Isabel Reis is the main character and the book commences with a suspicious death that may have had ‘gifted’ involvement. With a new partner Reis is wary of the remifications of investigating such a crime and her partners stance on gifted members of society. Stuggling with her own ‘gift’ but recognising the usefulness of telepathy when used correctly Reis diligently investigates whilst grappling with her own personal issues.
Truthfully, there is a lot going on in this book and I struggled intially, however by the midway point I was fully engaged, not wanting to put this thriller down. The notion of ‘gifted’ took some getting used to but this part of the story was told well, detailing testing, research and monitoring as well as grading. The dynamic between Reis and her partner Voronov was interesting as alongside Reis we got to know her new partner.
The crime itself was a little complex but pulled together nicely as the book progressed and I became increasingly familiar with the characters and the concepts. The notion of ‘gifted’ was original and worked well, particularly having a ‘gifted’ Inspector at the heart of the story, the crimes allowed a fuller exploration of ‘gifted’ which was very well done. An ending left open for another book adds weight here because much time has been spent developing the key characters in the investigating police team and while I am not certain this was the first in a series, a second book would be a welcome and positive surprise.
For fans of strong, well constructed crime fiction, told from the viewpoint of the investigation a murder to solve keeps reading minds alert and in this case a particularly chilling murder with lots of detail for sofa sleuths!
This is a blogtour celebrating publication of The Colours of Death, which is out now. Do check out what others are saying about this debut crime fiction.
About the Author
Patricia Marques was born in Barreiro, Portugal before moving to London when she was eight. She studied for a BA in Creative Writing at the University of Roehampton and later gained an MA in Creative Writing from City University.
Patricia loves reading and writing crime fiction that has a hint of ‘other’. She can usually be found most mornings crammed on an underground train carriage with her nose stuck in a book.
She lives in London and The Colours of Death is her first novel.