Title: Blood Axe Author: Leigh Russell Published: 26th November 2015 Publisher: No Exit Press
Detective crime novels are not always my go-to-place for a read as usually prefer books slightly less sinister, but Leigh Russell's peaked my interest so decided I was going to get stuck in.
This was actually pretty brilliant as crime novels go. Part of the Ian Peterson Murder Investigation series, Blood Axe can still be read as a stand-alone and I know this as this is my first Ian Peterson read. It works because every murder investigation is different, making each book a whole different story. In this case there is a brutal axe murderer on the loose and time is running out as ever before the murderer strikes again.
Blood Axe is such a convincing crime novel. Leigh writes with fantastic attention to detail that you can easily imagine it happening on a real crime investigation. I think this is what made the story so compelling as it felt realistic, it was also clear and understandable for those of us not privy to the inner workings of these investigations.
What I also liked about Blood Axe was that the detective wasn't your stereotypical moody guy who drinks a lot. Yes he has some home problems, but I was pleased to see that this wasn't the central focus of the book. I found then that I actually liked Ian. I was on his side the whole way through and wanted things to work in his favour. This was so refreshing compared to other crime novels that I have read.
Another thing that usually puts me off these types of novels is that they can be pretty predictable, but not Blood Axe. Leigh very cleverly and totally misleads the reader. I will be very surprised if any one managed to guess who the culprit was before the end.
So my verdict for my first Ian Peterson novel, pretty impressed. Blood Axe is definitely one of the most unpredictable crime novels I have read to date. Gripping and realistic in its delivery, you will speed through this.