It’s been a good summer for forensics expert Dr David Hunter. His relationship is going well and he’s in demand again as a police consultant. Life is good.
Then a call comes from an old associate: a body has been found, and she’d like Hunter to take a look.
The empty shell of St Jude’s Hospital now stands awaiting demolition, its only visitors society’s outcasts, addicts and dealers. A partially mummified corpse has been discovered in the hospital’s cavernous loft, but not even Hunter can say how long it’s been there. All he knows for sure is that it’s the body of a young woman. And that she was pregnant.
But the collapse of the loft floor reveals another of the hospital’s secrets. A sealed-off chamber, still with beds inside. Some of them occupied…
For Hunter, what began as a straightforward case is about to become a twisted nightmare that threatens everyone around him. And as the investigation springs more surprises, one thing is certain.
St Jude’s hasn’t claimed its last victim . . .
With its viscerally authentic forensics, menacing atmosphere and nerve-shredding tension, Simon Beckett’s new crime thriller will leave you gasping.
The Scent Of Death is available in ebook now and will be published in hardback on the 18th April 2019. You can purchase or pre-order your copy here.
The Scent Of Death is a fantastically gripping, fast paced and addictive read. I found myself unable to put the book down, turning the pages faster and faster as I desperately wanted to find out more. It was one of those books that when I wasn’t reading I was constantly thinking about it and wondering when I could fit a few more pages in!
The deserted hospital creates a wonderfully creepy and unpredictable setting that gives the reader the impression that anything could happen at any minute. I found myself holding my breath everytime Hunter enters the hospital wondering what was going to happen next and from where. The lack of light in the hospital increases this impression further as there are lots of dark corners where anything could be discovered.
The characters are all fabulous creations and well developed through the book, with the wide range of characters helping to make the story believable. I liked the main character Hunter who seemed to be a very capable pathologist who’s had a bit of a hard life up until now. The author includes bits of his life outside of the police investigation so that the reader can get to know his character almost personally. I felt this really added to the story as sometimes I was able to predict how he was going to react before he did.
There is some fantastic forensic details in this book, which while a bit graphic at times, I found utterly fascinating. The author manages to include details about the clues and processes used to help determine cause of death without ever seeming to lecture the reader or doubt their intelligence which made for very interesting reading. I think I know more about flies and their role in decay then I ever have in my life!
This book is incredibly fast paced with lots of different story lines to keep the reader glued to the page. There always seemed to be something happening or a feeling that something was which made it difficult to put down as there was no obvious place to stop! I found myself trying to hide away from the kids to read a bit more or, to their delight, offering them their tablets so I could read a tiny bit more always a sign of a fantastic book!
This is actually the 4th book in the series but I feel it could easily be read as a standalone, as I have read it, as anything you need to know is explained. However I’m very excited to have found a new series to enjoy so I will definitely be going back to devour the rest soon!
Huge thanks to Hayley from Transworld publishers for inviting me onto the blog tour and for my copy of this book which I received in exchange for an honest review. If you like fast paced, intelligent crime thrillers then you need to read this book!
About The Author:
Simon Beckett has worked as a freelance journalist for national newspapers and colour supplements. He is the author of five international bestselling crime thrillers featuring his forensic anthropologist hero, Dr David Hunter: The Chemistry of Death, Written in Bone, Whispers of the Dead, The Calling of the Grave and The Restless Dead. His stand-alone novels include Stone Bruises andWhere There’s Smoke. He lives in Sheffield.