A Line of Blood - Ben McPherson
A London family must deal with the murder of their secretive neighbor and the nerve-wracking police investigation that follows in this highly provocative, intensely twisty and suspenseful debut thriller that will have you guessing if one—or all—of them is guilty
For Alex Mercer, his wife Millicent and their eleven-year-old son Max are everything, his little tribe that makes him feel all’s right with the world. But when he and Max find their enigmatic next door neighbor dead in his apartment, their lives are suddenly and irrevocably changed. As the police conduct a methodical investigation, Alex becomes increasingly impatient for them to finish. After all, it so clearly was a suicide.
But as new information is uncovered, troubling questions arise. Why was the neighbor charging his home improvements to the Mercer’s address? How did a possession of Millicent’s end up in his apartment? And what has Max been listening to through the common wall they share with the neighbor? As the knot of suspicion grows tighter, this close-knit family begins to crack. Is Alex really the loving husband he professes to be? And where does Millicent disappear to on those long walks, stewing over something she can’t forget?
Each of them is suffering. Each has something to hide. And as they each question how well they really know one another, the Mercers will be forced to decide how far they’ll go to protect themselves—and their family—from investigators carefully watching their every move . . . waiting for one of them to make a mistake.
After reading A Line of Blood, you will never look at your loved ones the same way again.
First of all, it is going to take everything in me to NOT squeal and tell you who the murder actually is and why. Everything, lambs. Everything. Mostly because it's so unthinkable and I look at the people in my own little family and I can't connect it. I can't connect it, which is what makes this novel phenomenal. Is it slow? Kind of. But did it read almost like a British episode of Law & Order? Absolutely. Gut punches and all.
It all begins with Alex and his son Max, who basically trespass into the neighbors house after their cat, and find the neighbor dead. Naked in his bathtub, he's very clearly dead. Alex, obviously stunned, returns home with Max in tow and is absolutely convinced his son is irrevocably scarred after seeing a dead body. The wife, Millicent, is such a strange character. Right from the beginning, I honestly suspected her of something just because she disappears and her husband doesn't know where to. Max seems to hear and see everything, like most kids, and his parents are seemingly oblivious to what he knows.
It's not so much the "who killed the neighbor" that carries this book, it's more of what happens to the family as they find out. How they are all affected by it and what it means for them going forward. Sadly, I can't give you much more that won't ruin the book for you because as the reader, it's super important you discover things at the pace set by the author because you get the feeling of devastation, anger, fearfulness, and more just as the family does. Excellent book. I wouldn't say thriller, but it is definitely suspenseful and it would compare to seasoned authors in this genre with no problem. I highly recommend this is you are a fan of a story that will keep you on your toes!
You can purchase this book at Amazon or Barnes & Noble, of course. Happy reading, lambs!