Death on Cromer Beach: Another crime series from bestseller Ross Greenwood for 2023 (The Norfolk Murders Book 1)

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Death on Cromer Beach: Another crime series from bestseller Ross Greenwood for 2023 (The Norfolk Murders Book 1)

Death on Cromer Beach: Another crime series from bestseller Ross Greenwood for 2023 (The Norfolk Murders Book 1)

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Description

The protagonist here is Detective Sergeant Ashley Knight, of a Wymondham based Norfolk Major Investigative Team: when two bodies are discovered on a Norfolk Beach (one decapitated, one buried in the sand and left to drown), the Cromer based Knight is the obvious person to act as a day to day lead on the investigation. If not, then I would recommend using Google Maps Street View to check out some of the locations mentioned in the book. The rest of the Ashley’s MIT team were introduced and I look forward to learning more about them in further books. The two dead bodies are a couple of elderly hippy drifters – and those dragged into the case include a local homeless beach drifter, someone recently released from a secure mental institution, with the next dead body discovered (also drowned) a woman – all of whom seem to have been very disturbed and fearful recently.

I love Ross Greenwood's portrayal of his characters and the way they interact with each other throughout this book. DS Ashley Knight finds herself leading a double murder investigation when her superior has had to take stress leave. I was happy to keep reading and stayed up late two consecutive nights to find out what was going to happen next.If I had any minor quibbles about this book I would say there were a couple of places where I could tell that the main character was a woman as written by a man, because some of her language or actions didn’t quite ring true. There are twists and misdirections and an overall sense of danger and of something lurking and waiting. Dora Thorne and her chihuahua Happy are having their regular walk along the beach when they stumble across something unexpected… Well, it was definitely an interesting start to the story, as it makes you want to read on and find out what has happened. Whilst undoubtedly missing the fun, safe and riveting tapestry that comes with DI Barton and his Peterborough crew, Knight is a very engaging protagonist, that’s motivated by a difficult career where she has seen her share of horror, working against a backdrop of pain, fear and heartache which she must put aside to weave through a complex maze that is well-crafted, linking back to one historic event that changed the lives of seven young residents many years earlier, putting them all at risk, and making one of them a killer.

I'm going to mark this as being read because I suffered through just over half of the book, but it is really a DNF.As the body count rises it seems the likely suspect pool grows as well, all linked back to an incident in their past which has affected the lives of all who were present.

DS Ashley Knight, loner, single, middle-aged, has just been asked to investigate a double death on Cromer beach. It would seem that there is significant organisation to the crimes and as more bodies appear, DS Knight can only wonder who is planning these killings and for what reason. The book - as the first in the series - has lengthy exposition on Ashley’s backstory (involving a severe injury to a colleague when she was part of a unit chasing joyriders and a subsequent lapse into depression and alcoholism) and a wary but growing relationship with her sidekick, a well connected youngster on a fast track scheme but with his own challenges and issues. The forensics and technical aspects are spot on and added into the storyline to make it extra believable and enjoyable but at an excellent level that all can understand without it feeling like a lecture or being patronising.

The ending was satisfying but I didn't feel particularly connected to any of the characters (though the mc was queer, which was a nice surprise). I must admit that Cromer is far from my favourite Norfolk beach (too stony, not particularly dog friendly, and too crowded in season) or towns (Holt which is featured and correctly praised in the book is far more to my tastes) but I was delighted in particular to see the excellent Doggie Diner featured (where I was fortunate enough to win a raffle for “what a load of old squit” Waffles the Giant Dog). There was also one throwaway line which, as a lawyer, I didn’t believe was accurate which niggled a bit but I doubt anyone without a legal background would think anything of it, so I’m being a little pedantic here and I know sometimes I have to let things go for the sake of poetic licence! Having to deal with a double murder and then more as another and another body turns up is tough on the whole team.

This truly is one of those books where you are torn between wanting to devour it and wishing it would never end.It appears as though a group who have grown up together are the victims, though at least one has disappeared into the proverbial mist and could be the key to getting answers.



  • Fruugo ID: 258392218-563234582
  • EAN: 764486781913
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