Review: The Guilty Man (Detectives Lennox & Wilde Thrillers Book 1) by Helen H. Durrant


Print Length: 189 pages
Publisher: Joffe Press (October 29, 2020)

From  A missing child, drugs, human-trafficking, hangings and two spectacular fires. At the centre of it all, a detective with a mysterious past. The latest novel by author Helen H. Durrant is truly compelling.

In a declining town in the North of England, a man is tortured by a ruthless criminal. The victim’s severed hand is left on his wife’s doorstep.

Meanwhile, Detective Harry Lennox and DS Jess Wilde are involved in the case of a missing child. The little girl, presumed dead, turns up playing happily in a local park. The child’s mother who lives on a notorious estate doesn’t seem to care.

Detective Harry Lennox is battling his own demons, trying to bury a secret from his past with alcohol. He is staying in a rundown campervan on a friend’s driveway. Jess wants to know why he’s living like this, but he refuses to tell her anything.

How do the cases connect and who is trying to drive people out of their homes?


My Rating: 3 stars out of 5

I hate to say it, but for a brand new series, this one reminded me entirely way too much of her other works (especially her Calladine and Bayliss series). It seemed nearly ever aspect was the same just with a different name - partners who don't really know much about each other, human trafficking, crime lords, right down to the "rough housing development" that is ripe with drugs and other criminal activities. She even used the same formula of having two seemingly unrelated story-lines going on at once. 

Now I get that it's a formula for a reason (and one this author has used to their success many times over), but it made it hard for me to become invested in these characters when every few pages I was comparing them to her other characters. Even the surprising twist wasn't that surprising for me as it was nothing more than what I've come to expect from her. 

It didn't help that DS Jess Wilde seems more interesting in Harry's personal life (between constantly berating him for living in a camper van and not having a "proper flat" to telling him to go around to his ex-girlfriend's house for the rest of his things - things he has no place to store because he doesn't have a place to live), she quickly became annoying. Harry was no better, harboring this deep dark secret (or was he? I guess we'll all have to wait and see as it was never proved one way or another in this story), but he has an obvious drinking problem, as well as no qualms about using his friend (I mean seriously, who helps themselves to someone else's clothes when they aren't home because he needs something fancier than what he's got)? 

Despite these things, this is the kind of story that will appeal to those who enjoy police procedurals that aren't as straight on as they appear. I also believe that other fans of this author will most likely be able to enjoy this one without making all the comparisons that I did. For me? I will likely continue on with this series, although depending on when the next one is released, I might wait awhile in between readings. 

DISCLAIMER: I received a complimentary copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review. This has not affected my review in any way. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are 100% my own.

                                                                     The Guilty Man is available from

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