Review: The Trophy Killer (DI Nicki Hardcastle Mysteries #2) by Michelle Kidd


Print Length: 336 pages
Publisher: Joffe Books (June 22, 2023)

From Three grisly crime scenes. Body parts strewn across the town. Detective Nicki Hardcastle tackles her darkest case yet.

It’s a freezing December night when Detective Nicki Hardcastle gets the call. An elderly theatregoer settling in for the evening performance has received the shock of his resting on the faded fabric of his Dress Circle seat is a pair of human eyes.

Several hours later, a few miles across town, comes the second macabre find. A severed human tongue.

Then a worshipper at the cathedral is appalled to discover a human hand under the pew in front of her.

The pretty market town of Bury St Edmunds has never seen anything like it.

Someone is playing twisted games with Nicki and her team — but only they seem to know the rules.

The detectives are in a race against time to track down a brutal killer — before more victims meet a grisly fate.


My Rating: 3 stars out of 5

While this book was definitely interesting, I never felt particularly grabbed by it. The chapters following the police definitely slowed things down, and while I understand that real-life police work is often like this, I feel as though more could have been done with it to keep it interesting and to keep the pace flowing. Maybe a little less about how one officer was probably at his desk instead of at home or how another officer couldn't sleep. 

There were also a few maybe not inconsistencies by things that didn't add up. For example, the police go to speak to someone who was caught lying to them, now this person had "done a runner" once already do this time the officers brought back up. And yet this same person was able to jump out of their window and run off again without being caught? What was the backup for? Especially when the first time, the officers didn't even bother to chase them. I also wish more time had been spent on the discovery the officers made when they finally caught the person behind the horrible crimes. 

I did, however, enjoy the killer's point of view. It was interesting getting a glimpse into the mind of the killer. I also really enjoyed the way the author was able to weave a couple of interesting twists into the story, and am especially curious as to if the one subplot is going to be featured in future books and, if so, how it is going to play out. 

All things considered, I would definitely give this author another chance, and I do think this book will appeal to people who like police procedural novels.

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.

                                          The Trophy Killer is available on
                                              (for free if you subscribe to Kindle Unlimited)

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