CTG Reviews: Blackbird by Tom Wright

Blackbird cover image

Blackbird cover image

What the blurb says: “The day after a terrible storm, electricity still crackling in the air, a woman is found dead on the outskirts of a Texan town. She has been brutally attacked and nailed to a cross.

The victim is Dr Deborah Gold, a psychologist who has taken a lot of people’s secrets to her grave.

Which means a lot of suspects for Detective Jim Beaudry Bonham to investigate. And lately he could use some psychological help himself …”

Set in a small Texan town, this gritty and uncompromising thriller follows Detective Jim Bonham, or Biscuit as he’s known to his friends and family, as he tries to unpick the truth behind the brutal killing of Dr Deborah Gold.

With a nod to the supernatural, Jim follows both the evidence trail and his own visions and hunches. But as he discovers more about the dark deeds Deborah Gold had been involved in, he finds his own buried emotions about recent and past losses return to haunt him.

The atmospheric setting of this novel is both hauntingly eerie and colourfully vivid. Wright has created a cast of unique, larger-than-life characters: from the determined and slightly clairvoyant Jim Bonham, to his no-nonsense colleague Mouncey, his wife Jana (with whom his relationship is decidedly sticky) and the girls. Even Jim’s good companion cat, Mutt, has one hell of a personality.

Rich with beautiful prose and lyrical dialogue that I found highly reminiscent of the late, great Elmore Leonard, this book was a treat to read. Heart-wrenchingly compelling, and hard to put down, the story events draw you into Jim Bonham’s world and have you rooting for him to find the killer of Deborah Gold, and the answers to the questions that have haunted him for so long.

Highly recommended.


[with thanks to Cannongate for my copy of Blackbird]


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