Book Review: The Bone Field by Simon Kernick

DI Ray Mason gets a call from a man named Henry Forbes asking him to meet him at his lawyer’s private residence. He  says he has information about Kitty Sinn, his former girlfriend who vanished without a trace from Thailand when the pair were travelling. Forbes claims that Kitty is dead and her body is the England, in fact he says its her remains that have just been unearthed in the grounds of Medmenham College.

Forbes refuses to say anything else until Ray can guarantee he will be protected – Kitty was killed by a ruthless group of people and they will come after Forbes once they know he’s started talking.

While on the phone to his boss, masked men enter the house and kill Forbes with Ray only just escaping with his life. As Ray and his colleagues begin to look into Forbes’ life, infamous former police officer turned PI Tina Boyd reveals that days before his death Forbes instructed Tina to find a woman called Charlotte Curtis, and she needed to find her fast.

Soon, both Ray and Tina are being sucked into a very dangerous world.

Simon Kernick is one of my favourite authors, his books, plotlines and characters are always on the money. The Bone Field pairs up two of Kernick’s most interesting and complicated characters, Ray Mason and Tina Boyd, and it’s a great decision, with their similarities and disregard for the rules making for exciting scenes jam-packed with the action and pace that Kernick is well-known for.

However there is a marked difference between The Bone Field and Kernick’s previous books. While several of his characters have appeared in multiple books, each book has been written so it can be read as a stand alone, whereas The Bone Field is the first in a five book story arc. I think you can feel the difference as you read.

Kernick speaks with many industry professionals to ensure his police jargon is accurate and up to date, and whereas usually it is the action that propels you  through the story and the desire to find out the fate of the characters immediately.

The Bone Field plays the long game. Yes, you want to know what happens to Tina, Ray and the new characters, but there is also a real sense of intrigues created; you want to know and understand more about the crime and the case, and how all the layers fit together – there is more mystery and detective work at the forefront of this story.

The Bone Field is a brilliant start to what promises to be a thrilling and captivating series, with the mystery of more traditional crime stories mixed in with Kernick’s signature action-packed scenes and unexpected twists.

Really, the only problem is that we have to wait until January 2018 to find out what happens next…

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