Wednesday, 29 May 2019

Spotlight & Review: Children in Chains by Lorraine Mace

Children in Chains by Lorraine Mace

Detective Inspector Paolo Sterling is determined to shut down the syndicate flooding Bradchester’s streets with young prostitutes.
When a child is murdered, Paolo becomes aware of a sinister network of abusers spread across Europe, and spanning all levels of society. But Joey, the shadowy leader of the gang, always seems to be one step ahead in the chase.
Has Paolo come up against a criminal he cannot defeat?

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This second book in the Detective Inspector Paolo Sterling series is standalone.

With the murder of a child linked to a child prostitution ring, determined DI Sterling wants to seek justice for the young victim. However, his investigations find the links are international, spread far beyond Bradchester making him wonder if there's a remote chance of shutting down the network of abusers?

A step away from what I normally read, this novel has an intriguing, dark narrative and definitely not for the faint-hearted. I confess to feeling a little apprehensive about my own ability to cope with the harrowing narrative. Thankfully, I managed but it wasn't an easy read. The scenario is sobering, thought-provoking and difficult to read sometimes due to shocking details which emerge. So, when the case is finally wrapped up, it's a relief.

A side plot about Paolo's life away from work is one aspect where I do wonder about what happened earlier in his life, leading me to wonder if I should have read book one first. The thought is borne out of my own curiosity rather than thinking this novel is missing something, which it isn't. The author does a fine job of including the relevant back story so readers won't feel they are missing important facts.

The author's writing style focuses on keeping the narrative flowing and the details always relevant to keep the reader invested within the plot. The theme is dark and disturbing yet she manages to deal with the subject matter in a respectful way. Structured like crime stories for the small and big screen, there's a twist near the end which I didn't foresee but greatly appreciated.

Overall, fans of crime thrillers will enjoy this novel and will want to pick up others in the series too. I know I'm motivated to read more about DI Sterling.

***review copy received courtesy of the publisher Accent Press*** 

When not working on her D.I. Sterling Series, Lorraine Mace is engaged in many writing-related activities. She is a columnist for both Writing Magazine and Writers' Forum and is head judge for Writers’ Forum monthly fiction competitions. A tutor for Writers Bureau, she also runs her own private critique and author mentoring service. She is co-author, with Maureen Vincent-Northam, of THE WRITER'S ABC CHECKLIST (Accent Press). Other books include children’s novel VLAD THE INHALER - HERO IN THE MAKING, and NOTES FROM THE MARGIN, a compilation of her Writing Magazine humour column.