10 Reads of Summer: The Wire in the Blood by Val McDermid

Val McDermid’s Number One bestselling crime series, featuring psychological profiler Dr Tony Hill and DCI Carol Jordan in the suspenseful and ferociously readable thriller that led to the much-loved TV show.



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Young girls are disappearing around the country. Everyone assumes they are teenage runaways, headed for the big city and bright lights. They vanish without trace — society’s disposable children, There is nothing to connect them to each other, let alone the killer whose charming manner hides a warped and sick mind.

Nobody moves around inside the messy heads of serial killers like Dr Tony Hill. Now heading up the recently founded National Profiling Task Force, he sets his team an exercise: they are given the details of thirty missing teenagers and asked to use their new techniques to discover whether there is a sinister link between any of the cases. Only one officer comes up with a concrete theory, but it is ridiculed by the rest of her group … until a killer murders and mutilates one of their number.

Could the outrageous suspicion possibly be true? For Tony Hill, the murder of a member of his team becomes a matter for personal revenge. Aided by his previous colleague, Carol Jordan, he embarks upon a campaign of psychological terrorism – a game of cat and mouse where the roles of hunter and hunted are all too easily reversed.


My favourite genre is crime fiction and Val McDermid is one of the best. I have enjoyed the Tony Hill / Carol Jordan series for several years. There are eight books in the series now that Insidious Intent has been published (UK, out 5 Dec in US). However, I hadn’t read this, the second in the series.

In The Wire in the Blood we find Tony heading up the newly formed National Profiling Task Force, working through scenarios in training. Whilst DCI Carol Jordan starts her new job in Seaford Police Force.

Val McDermid writes so well intertwining investigations, building tension and keeping you totally wrapped up in the story. There are some shocking events but it remains plausible and keeps the reader truly engaged. Another terrific, gripping story from Val McDermid.

Rating: 4.5*

I would not only recommend this book but the whole series – perhaps, unlike me, start with The Mermaids Singing the first. When you’ve got a free moment you could fill it with any one of Val McDermids other series: Kate Brannigan, Lindsay Gordan or Kate Pirie – you won’t be sorry. Then, of course, there are the stand alones, all well worth reading. Not to mention Northanger Abbey a really enjoyable modern retelling of Jane Austens Northanger Abbey or her children’s book or her non-fiction. Val McDermid has 30 years of writing to her name, she has been given many well earned and deserved awards including the CWA Gold Dagger.


Paperback: 544 pages
Publisher: HarperCollins (4 Mar. 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0007344732
ISBN-13: 978-0007344734




One Comment on “10 Reads of Summer: The Wire in the Blood by Val McDermid

  1. Pingback: Insidious Intent by Val McDermid – Love Books, Read Books


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