The Burning Girl by Mark Billingham (Tom Thorne #4)


My Rating: 3/5

Availability: Hardback, Paperback, Kindle, Nook and Kobo


X marks the spot – and when that spot is a corpse’s naked back and the X is carved in blood, DI Tom Thorne is in no doubt that the dead man is the latest victim of a particularly vicious killer.


This is brutal turf warfare between north London gangs. Organised crime boss Billy Ryan is moving into someone else’s patch, and that someone is not best pleased.


And when an X is carved on DI Tom Thorne’s front door, he knows the smouldering embers of this case are about to erupt into flames…

 My Review: I have thoroughly enjoyed the Thorne series up until now, however I have to be honest and say that I struggled a little bit with this latest book (the 4th in the series).  The writing itself is still great although in this particular book I found it more difficult to get into the story. When corpses appear with an X marked into their skin, Thorne is as usual tied up with the case. Enter the organized crime Boss Billy Ryan and the stage is set. However, for some reason the booked lacked the spark that previous books have had.

Recurring characters such as Chamberlain and Tughan appeared but I just felt like they didn’t go anywhere. I’m actually struggling to review this book as although it was far from terrible, it almost felt like it was written in a hurry or without any real spark, which is certainly a world away from the usual Billingham style. The chapters flowed relatively well but the overall feeling was that it was failing to spark any real interest, beyond completing another stage of the Thorne books.

I’m still certainly a fan of Chamberlain and hope we continue to see her in future books. However, I was disappointed with the lack of characters featured such as Holland and Hendricks. It may sound like I am being really picky and I promise you I’m not. I’m sadly failing to be all that articulate either, but I think you get the gist. Overall, it seems like this book was solidly written but lacked it’s usual oomph! Having said that I will eagerly move onto book 5 as soon as my ridiculously long reading list allows!

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