A body is found hanging from the ceiling in an empty apartment. What makes this body different is that it is an amalgamation of six different body parts stitched together. Detective William Fawkes, known as Wolf, and Detective Baxter are assigned to catch the ‘Ragdoll’ killer. The killer taunts the police by releasing the names of six other victims and the dates he intends to kill them. The detectives need to identify the six people already killed as well as catch the killer and protect those on the list, where the last victim will be Fawkes himself.
I have read a lot about this book in the past few months and it lived up to my expectations. The plot is brilliant in its concept and originality. The story proceeds at a fast pace that never relents so you are compelled to keep reading. Like a jigsaw, just when you think you have all the pieces in the correct place you realise that they don’t actually fit.
The characters come across as very familiar and comfortable drawing you in to their story. The office politics in the police and in the news room is portrayed with verisimilitude; the characters interaction is very natural, which helps the plot move along with ease. Fawkes and Baxter, have history, like a lot of detective partnerships in books, which adds a frisson to their relationship. Their longtime friendship enables them to bounce off each other and even adds occasional humour to the proceedings.
The ‘Ragdoll’ killer is dark and calculating, always seeming to avoid being seen whilst taunting the police for their ineptitude. His crimes are gruesome and planned expertly and he is able to get to the victims wherever they are. We never really get a description of the killer, he is like a phantom who can be anywhere at any time. I felt this lack of physical detail added to the suspense and fear of the character, and thus the book. I do wonder where authors get their ideas for books like this, the crimes are terrifying and the killer twisted.
This is a stunning debut novel from Daniel Cole, and shows great promise for future books. It is a disturbing and exciting read, that will keep you in a grip of anticipation.