The Salt Marsh

Written by Clare Carson

Review written by Maureen Ellis

Maureen Ellis is a keen reader in the crime genre. She regularly posts on Goodreads.com


The Salt Marsh
Head of Zeus
RRP: £18.99
Released: June 16 2016
HBK

The Salt Marsh is set during the Cold War in Britain, a time period that in itself, gives added dimension to a novel.

There is an eclectic mix of spies, criminals, drug dealers, and hitmen. Then there are the locations - Dungeness with its power station and salt marshes - the flat, often bleak, windswept landscapes of Norfolk and Kent - and finally London - each of these locations adding depth and atmosphere to the storyline. Then, thrown into this mix are ancient superstitions, witchcraft, spells and curses. With all these threads combined, makes for a truly unique narrative.

Sam Coyle's father, Jim, was an undercover agent. This was something that he kept completely separate from his family life. However, as a young girl, Sam becomes unwittingly involved in the dark and secretive world that he operates in, on what was supposed to be a treat for her. During a visit to a fair with her father, she notices a man watching them, and Jim suddenly takes flight, leaving her alone. The man approaches her, and makes it clear he knows who her father is. This day will haunt her in so many ways, well into the future.

Some years later, Jim is dead, and Sam's boyfriend Luke goes missing. She is determined to find him, and her investigations ultimately reveal revelations about Jim's undercover work, and also the events that led to his death.

This was really well-written, with a very unique storyline. The characters are strong and mostly believable, I say mostly, because I couldn't quite get my head around the 'crying hitman'. The locations were superb, and well-chosen to give added flavour and depth to this absorbing read.

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