I fear I may have fallen into like some crazed stalker fan scenario where Helen Fields is concerned ( not her per se, but her books I hasten to add!) so I'm trying to temper my ravings and urging of people to buy her books, but boy is it difficult, they're just so darned good!

In Perfect Silence, Fields introduces us to yet another horrifying murderer, the babydoll killer. He is of course disturbing, though I have to say not quite so gruesome as previous offerings, or perhaps that's just me acclimatising myself to a murder-reading spree, I guess it's all subjective. There were echoes of Jame Gumb in the dolls made of skin though which was pretty creepy. Anyway, the MIT are certainly kept on their toes trying to catch the killer before any more victims are discovered, and thus the pace of the novel is a steady canter rather than a leisurely stroll around the woods. Coupled with the killings is the investigation into the attacks on the homeless population of Edinburgh; which brings with it the difficulties and problems dealing with the political influences that overshadow the department and the city. This causes some fairly epic clashes between DCI Ava Turner and her superior Superintendent Overbeck, that put her career in a very precarious place.

And so on to what is the major strength of Helen Fields' novels: the characters. DCI Turner has settled into her role a little more in this book I felt, though I did still miss a little of the camaraderie of the early books. She still manages to be the feisty officer she has always been, and is certainly not afraid to speak her mind. DI Luc Callanach seems to be beginning to move on from the rape allegations, though the after-effects are still holding him back in his relationship with Selina (though she manages to find ways to try and help the situation!). Of course I'm not going to be happy until Luscious Luc and Ava get together, and Perfect Silence was sort of reminiscent of a great will-they, won't they love story in parts. I was trying to think of an example, but the only one that springs to mind is Billy and Ally in Ally McBeal which perhaps isn't the greatest example to be fair and probably says more about my referencing skills than anything else! I do so enjoy the relationship between Luc and Ava though, as well as the relationships between the rest of the team, even though DS Lively didn't seem at the top of his cheekiness scale here. The characters are as engaging as the plot throughout, and I don't think I will ever tire of them.

You don't need to have read the previous 3 novels to get the most out of Perfect Silence. You'd be mad not to want to read them though if this was your introduction to Callanch and Turner. As usual I totally recommend this Helen Fields' book, I'll issue the usual warning of clearing your diary to read it, because rather like Pringles, once you start you can't stop. Roll on Book #5!!

Perfect Silence is published by Avon Books on 23rd August 2018