I was kindly sent The Close in exchange for an honest review and that’s why, despite this being book 10 in the DS Maeve Kerrigan series by Jane Casey, it is my introduction to the character. And what an intro! The Close is a very clever crime thriller that gave me enough back-story to understand where Maeve is in her life now and definitely made me want to read the preceding books to find out more.
Opening sentence: All murder investigations were different and yet all of them began the same way, at least for me: standing in silence near a body, trying to catch the faintest echo of what had happened.
Three crimes and a lot of sexual tension
I really enjoyed the structure of The Close as it felt different to other crime thrillers in the way that it cleverly balances not one, not two, but THREE crime plotlines that our lead character Maeve is directly involved in.
The book starts with Maeve investigating the case of a murdered doctor, but while that’s going on, she is called upon to go undercover with her colleague Josh Derwent (more on that situation in a minute) and while they are undercover, a separate crime is committed, which leads to another investigation. High, page-turning drama all round.
Everything in Jellicoe Close seemed safe but under the surface there was danger, jagged reefs under the calm water.
Maeve and Josh
The Close can take the title of the sexiest detective-led thriller I’ve read thanks to the simmering tensions between Maeve and Josh. They have a years-long friendship that The Close gives us snippets about (for those, like me, who don’t know their history). Josh is Maeve’s landlord and boss but they have a strong friendship. Josh is in a relationship and has a stepson, Maeve is single after coming out of an abusive relationship.
So when, undercover, they have to pretend to be a couple living in Jellicoe Close to dog-sit for one of the regular neighbours, the lines between work and reality become very blurred indeed…
‘I know, but isn’t there more to life than just coping? Isn’t that what you’d say to me?‘
I thought all three plotlines had satisfying endings and really liked switching between them to keep the story buzzing along. A highly visceral read – I was equal parts stressed at what was happening in the crime side, the scene-setting was so well done, and wanting Maeve and Josh to just get it on.
It’s great knowing this is an established crime detective series and I will be dipping into Jane Casey’s back catalogue.
Have you read the Maeve Kerrigan series? Let me know what you think!
- Thank you to Maddy at Harper Collins for the ARC;
- Get your copy of The Close here;
- Published by HarperCollins 2nd March 2023;
- 416 pages;
- My rating: