Review: The Winter Killer (DI James Walker, #3) by Alex Pine


Print Length: 379 pages
Publisher: Avon Books UK (October 13, 2022)

From Christmas has arrived in Cumbria, and wedding bells are ringing.
But an ice-cold killer is waiting in the fells…

As the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Eve, DI James Walker receives a phone call that puts paid to his Christmas break. During the wedding of the year at a lakeside hotel, the bride’s sister has vanished.

When Rachel left the wedding breakfast before her speech, newly-wed Libby was furious. But as the night went on with no sign of her maid-of-honour, Libby started to realise something was very, very wrong…

Before the wedding night is out, the lake is being searched for a body.

Something old, something new. One guest is a killer. The question is: who?


My Rating: 3 stars out of 5

Although this is book number three in the series, you do not have to read the others first to understand and enjoy this one. 

This is the second novel by this author (and in this series) that I have read. As before, I would categorize this one as more of a police procedural than a thriller novel as we spend most of the novel investigating leads, and interviewing suspects. The events that I personally would deem thrilling seemed to be very few and far between (although I do see where the author tried to go for a shock value when certain things were revealed, I never really felt shocked). 

Because I was familiar with this author's writing style, it was easy to see which characters would eventually be cleared from the suspect list before they were actually cleared. A tactic favored by this author seems to be using one or more red herrings to try to steer your attention to one or two people, in particular, only to have some piece of evidence come to light later on that moves the case in a totally new direction (much as I would assume it is like in real life). However, I will say with this one I was still taken by surprise not only by who the killer was, but by the underlying story that eventually came out as well. 

I am curious as to whether this will be the last book in this series (based on some things that happened) or whether the author will use what happened in this book as a jumping-off point to focus more on other members of his team. I would read more from this author simply because, despite the issues I had with this book, it still kept me reading and guessing. 

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


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