The Skeleton Road by Val McDermid was my first read of her novels although I have watched some of her television series.
I shall definitively be reading more of her work as I was gripped by the complex narrative which took me from Edinburgh and Oxford to The Balkans, encouraging me to research the history of the conflicts in the former Yugoslavian area.
As the investigation gathers momentum, she is drawn deeper into a world of intrigue and betrayal, spanning the dark days of the Balkan Wars.
I felt I should know more about the war and the horrific events that were carried out in supposedly civilised Europe.
This is not a comfortable story on any level but it is quite right that it should be told. We forget that the conflicts in other countries can affect lives outside the battle zone and just falling in love with someone does not make them easy to live with.
The different strands of the story were ultimately pulled together well and while the denouement was satisfactory there was a hammer blow at the end.
This may be a crime thriller but it a thought provoking book and I look forward to reading more of McDermid’s work.
Her writing is clear, clean and expressive. I love the strong women characters and more than once gasped aloud at shocking events in the story. She has persuaded me to explore more of this genre of novel and if I find another writer who does it as well as McDermid I shall let you know.
by Tina Foster, deputy editor
The Skeleton Road was published in HB by Little Brown Book Group on 11th September 2014. The paperback is due for release in April next year.
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