One cold morning, the butchered remains of a woman are discovered. DI Kelly Porter knows this is the work of a monster. One who has killed before – and will kill again.
Kevin Flint has a reputation for being odd. He creeps around hidden corners of the Lake District and witnesses depraved acts. What he sees excites him. But will he cross the line from bystander to perpetrator?
Kelly is certain that the answers lie with Kevin. But complications in her personal life are a distraction. Will she miss her chance and end up with blood on her hands? And will she ever be the same when it’s over?
This is the eighth book in the series. I’ve read them all. It a terrific series. A series were the author writes about contemporary issues that have an impact not only on society but on the law and the way in which it is policed. It is set in the beautiful Lake District but just because an area is absolutely breathtaking in it’s scenery doesn’t mean that the folk who live in these glorious places are all upstanding citizens. No, indeed! These days and no doubt in years gone by heinous crimes are committed, executed in remote areas such as Cumbria has. The perpetrators belief that they will go undetected is based on the fact that these areas are so cut off from civilisation.
This book opens with those unsung heroes of the refuse world – the Refuse collector, waste operative, recycling collector, dustman, binman (UK), garbageman or trashman (United States) – the waste management and disposal technician. Those men and women who come out every day regardless of the weather to take away and dispose of all our unwanted rubbish and waste. They keep our streets clean and free of pests. I was delighted to read this scene of refuse workers as they go about their work. These workers, at least where I live, do their job steadfastly and cheerfully and I feel they deserve all the praise they receive. I certainly thank them for all they do.
It is just such an operative whilst on their rounds who comes across a bin containing a dead body – or at least dismembered parts of a body! Oh, yes, there’s “been a murder”!
Kelly’s investigation begins with trying to identify the body and then realising that a missing persons case was mistakenly moved out to another Force. Kelly is D I of the Northern Lakes area and is about to share her case with the Southern Lakes area D I. as the case overlaps the two areas. When the body is finally identified they realise that she had previously been reported missing but understood to have left the Lakes. She was reported as being seen at Lancaster station. This was obviously a case of mistaken identity by the caller but it seem that no one had followed up because the case had been passed to the Lancashire Force.
During the course of the investigation we catch up on what is happening with Kelly in her personal life. There’s plenty here for those of us who have read the previous books and enough information on what’s going on for those that haven’t. Kelly has quite an announcement to make but the investigation as always takes precedence over home life. Jonny knows and has expressed his opinion. This has become something of a predicament for Kelly and she has a big decision to make which will impact on all her family.
As the investigation progresses we learn about how sex workers are operating in Cumbria with little in their way to prevent it even when it impacts on other crimes. There is also the interesting angle of Chinese influences in Cumbria and the use of diplomatic immunity to avoid arrest or even questioning. Along with some quite dark passages around child abuse, family dysfunction and the way in which some communities gossip about these things but do little to help prevent it. Although, even when they try to draw attention to it there doesn’t seem to be anyone taking notice. Those cracks in dealing with issues because they fall between social care and education (and etc.) with so few taking responsibility, often for understandable reasons, whilst communication breaks down or isn’t even established and lives are traumatised and ruined.
Rachel Lynch delivers an excellent police procedural which covers timely events and modern issues whilst building real tension and solving the crimes. She doesn’t pull any punches and the storylines, as with this one, can be quite dark. It doesn’t all end happily and, I suppose, when reflecting real life nor should it.
The characterisation is well on point. You know the main characters and they are like old friends, you can still learn a lot about them but if it ever became necessary you’d put your life in their hands. The other characters are well drawn and very believable, the storyline as always is well plotted and there is an ease of reading with these books that I really like. Lost Causes is a very well written, gritty novel which I enjoyed enormously.
I most certainly recommend reading this book indeed the series and hope that you enjoy it as much as I do.
Here are links to my reviews of the previous DI Kelly Porter Books:-
Canelo Crime is an imprint of Canelo, one of the leading independent publishers of commercial fiction in the UK. Since Canelo was founded in 2015, they have sold millions of books and continue to work with some of the most talented writers around. Crime fiction has always been a huge part of Canelo’s success so in 2020 the time came to launch an imprint to bring the best of the genre to one place.
At Canelo Crime, you will find some of the best contemporary crime fiction of recent years. The characters are diverse, the settings are varied and the plots are always gripping. You will get to see some of your darkest fears brought to life, and learn more about the minds of hardened criminals than you may ever need to know, but one thing is for sure – you will never be anything less than hooked!
Publication Date: 20 Aug 2020
Rachel Lynch grew up in Cumbria and the lakes and fells are never far from her. London pulled her away to teach History and marry an Army Officer, whom she followed around the globe for thirteen years. A change of career after children led to personal training and sports therapy, before publishing her first novel. Rachel is the author of the DI Kelly Porter series.
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