(Image from Barnes & Noble)
(Note: While this review will not contain spoilers for A Dark and Twisted Tide, it may inadvertently reveal plot surprises from earlier Lacey Flint mysteries. As always, I recommend reading books in a series in order. Actually, in the case of this author, I recommend reading her books in order of publication to avoid spoilers about secondary, but recurring characters.)
After investigating several harrowing cases with a London homicide team, Detective Constable Lacey Flint has had enough. She now works for the city's Marine Unit. As if patrolling the water all day isn't enough, she's also moved into a houseboat on the Thames. Much to her surprise, the intensely private Lacey actually enjoys being part of the floating community with its laidback lifestyle and quirky residents. She's even taken to wild-swimming in the Thames, a dangerous hobby that appeals to Lacey's reckless side. Add in a satisfying relationship with DI Mark Joesbury and the former homicide detective is about as happy as she's ever been.
Then Lacey makes a gruesome discovery. Considering the Thames is infamous for producing at least a corpse a week, Lacey shouldn't be shocked to bump into a dead body during one of her clandestine swims. Still, it's a surprise to find the shrouded remains of a young Middle Eastern woman bobbing in the water. And that's only the first one. After several similar finds, it becomes obvious that someone is trying to get Lacey's attention. Drawn once more into a puzzling murder mystery, she scrambles for answers while a sinister presence stalks her every move. Already paranoid, Lacey's also hearing disturbing rumors about Joesbury. With both her personal and professional lives in turmoil, she's got to figure out what's going on. And fast. Before her own corpse becomes the next to surface out of the murky depths of the River Thames.
Fresh is not an adjective normally associated with the Thames, but in this case it fits. That's because the unique riverboat community setting in A Dark and Twisted Tide breathes fresh, new life into Sharon Bolton's already-excellent Lacey Flint series. It adds an extra element of color and intrigue that makes this, the fourth installment, stand out. Like its predecessors, A Dark and Twisted Tide also features interesting characters, vivid storytelling, and enough plot twists to make your head spin. My only complaint is that Joesbury is more off-scene than on in this one. Otherwise, I really enjoyed this riveting thriller.
(Readalikes: Other books in the Lacey Flint series, including Now You See Me; If Snow Hadn't Fallen [novella]; Dead Scared; Lost; and Here Be Dragons [novella])
If this were a movie, it would be rated:
for language, violence, blood/gore, and disturbing subject matter
To the FTC, with love: Another library