Category: Elizabeth Corley

Grave Doubts by Elizabeth Corley (DCI Fenwick #3)

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My Rating: 5/5

In her first and second novels we meet DCI Andrew Fenwick along with WDC Louise Nightingale. The third is no different and the story opens with Nightingale putting herself in the firing line, all in the name of her job. Nightingale is being used as bait to lure out a dangerous killer. When it all goes wrong and the killer attacks Louise leaving her for dead, her life changes. She is no longer the confident woman she once was and finds herself trapped in the world where fear is the leading factor in your life. Luckily for Nightingale they catch the killer and he is imprisoned for quite some time. Not being able to deal with the comments from colleagues and press alike she decides to retreat down to an old family cottage that nobody knows about. It is completely isolated and she feels that this is the best place to gain back her confidence and self belief.

Andrew Fenwick is also on the case and as always is following his strange but insightful `gut feelings’ on this case. Yes the man is locked up but Fenwick has a nagging doubt that this man wasn’t working alone and that there is still a potential danger not only to women in general but in particular Louise Nightingale. As far as Fenwick is concerned she is unfinished business in the eyes of the killer. However trying to prove that theory to his senior colleagues is a whole other matter.

When Nightingale made the move she didn’t tell anybody where she was. With a leave of absence from work the safest thing was to tell and trust nobody. With no parents, just a twin brother she makes work of renovating this old family cottage. However what she isn’t prepared for is the history surrounding her family that gets dug up in the process. It throws her into a complete spin and her life feels like it’s getting out of control all over again.

With Fenwick worrying about Nightingale and not knowing where she is, Louise trying to piece her life together with her attacker locked up, the attacks continue. Is the right man in prison or is this an accomplice.¬†Whatever the answer, the killer continues on a rampage which sees young girls being butchered. Fenwick knows that he is the only one who can really see and understand the danger from this man and fights to save Nightingale from being this killer’s final victim.

This is the third book I have read by Elizabeth Corley and I have to say I enjoyed this one even more than the first two. The story is very detailed and you follow more than one plot line which can be confusing but when you have established each character it is truly gripping. The murder scenes are described vividly as are the thoughts and emotions of all of the lead characters. I am eagerly anticipating her third book (I have some catching up to do). This is a brilliantly written book with a feeling of fear as we follow this killer. The characters that I loved Fenwick and Nightingale are back again and with more issues than before. The ending of the book is a great opening for the follow up and I only hope that I enjoy that as much as I have this.

Fatal Legacy by Elizabeth Corley (Fenwick #2)

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My Rating: 4/5

We meet DCI Andrew Fenwick again who has featured in all of her books. This story is a complex case which involves the huge family run Wainwright business. Alan Wainwright, the owner of this empire is found dead and his death is ruled suicide. His only son is expecting to inherit his fortune but he, along with the rest of the Wainwright family are shocked, when half of his assets along with the company are left to Alan’s nephew Alex.

Alex is married to the elusive Sally who is certainly not popular with the family after a whirlwind romance and very quick wedding to Alex. When Fenwick initially looks at the case it seems that it is a simple case of family jealousy. When Graham starts investigating Alex’s wife, he doesn’t like what he finds. When a second Wainwright family member is found dead Fenwick smells the starting of a murder case. The only problem is that he has to prove it. He along with the trust sidekicks Cooper and Nightingale throw themselves into the case head first. The story takes a turn for the worse when Fenwick’s family are directly involved.

Unfortunately for me, I read Corley’s books in the wrong order and I think this has maybe had an impact on my opinion of this book. I enjoyed Requim Mass which was her first novel and felt that the storyline was the strongest thing. However, my second book was then Grave Doubts which I gave a 5 star to and I absolutely loved. In reading Fatal Legacy I was in fact going back one step. I felt that the characters were under-developed (which is maybe why I enjoyed Grave Doubts so much) and that we didn’t really get to know Fenwick, Cooper and Nightingale all that well.

Aside from the characters themselves, the storyline was great (as usual), if like I said before a little complex. The book is based largely around the financial aspects of the company and Fenwick working out if the case is as simple as `Murder for Money’. Corley’s descriptions of settings and scenarios are excellent and when you can feel the Detectives getting closer to the answers you can almost feel the tension rising in your body. In my (limited) opinion this makes for fantastic reading! Like her other books I felt I had to really involve myself in the story so I knew exactly who everybody was.

Although I thoroughly enjoyed this book, I would only give it 3.5 out of 5. The reason for this is that because I have read Grave Doubts (the follow up to this story); I know just how good her writing can be. I am now eagerly anticipating reading her latest book Innocent Blood. I think that with her development of the characters in the follow up book and her great storytelling her latest one should be an absolute corker.

Requiem Mass by Elizabeth Corley (DCI Fenwick #1)

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My Rating: 4/5

We meet DCI Andrew Fenwick who is back to work following the break up of his marriage under awful circumstances. He is trying to manage his family on his own with the help of his mother when he goes back to work and is given the mundane task of desk duty. Before long he moves on to a new case which takes him away from the desk and straight into the firing line.

It involves five school friends who twenty years earlier were on a school trip when tragedy struck and one of those girls was killed in a freak accident. He has the help of WDC Louise Nightingale and Cooper who both prove to be valuable assets to the case. When Fenwick, Nightingale and Cooper realise that the women involved are now on a hit list they have to race against time to try and track down the man responsible before all of these women become victims.

Will they manage to do it or will Fenwick’s next call be a to attend a new murder scene? I enjoyed this book and felt that I got to know the characters Fenwick along with his two officers working on the case with him, Nightingale and Cooper. However if I am honest I struggled a couple of times where the book got quite detailed (hence the 4 star, although if I could it would have been 4.5 out of 5) but it didn’t deter me and I finished the book with a sense of satisfaction. Corley is very detailed in her descriptions of crime scened which both thrilled and scared me in equal measures. I am a fan of crime authors that use the same characters and create a series so I am pleases I have found a new author. I already have the next Corley/Fenwick book lined up which I have already started