Dirty Little Secret
By Jonathan Peace
Dirty Little Secret is gritty, entertaining and packs a twisty punch. It’s a great police procedural debut novel.
Find out more in the blurb and my review below. Thanks to the publisher – Hobeck Books for inviting me to review and for gifting me to book.
Ossett, West Yorkshire
A town of flower shows, Maypole parades and Sunday football games. Behind all the closed doors and drawn curtains live hidden truths and shameful lies.
A body is found
WDC Louise Miller’s first case as detective in her hometown is hampered by the sexism and misogyny of small-town policing. Her four years on the force in Manchester have prepared her for this. Along with ally WPC Elizabeth Hines, the pair work the case together.
What truths lie hidden?
As their inquiries deepen, the towns secrets reveal even darker truths that could lead to the identity of the killer. But when a second girl goes missing, Louise realises that some secrets should stay hidden.
Be prepared to be transported to the 1980’s, an era captured well by Peace, with its telephone boxes (one which a body is found) and terminology. This is Jonathan Peace’s debut novel and also his main character’s first job in her new location in West Yorkshire – WDC Louise Miller. She had perviously been working in Manchester, so the transfer is quite a change of scene for her.
The year is 1987 and the opening date is Friday the 13th, adding a bit of a chill to the spine and even more so with some gruesome murders.
WDC Miller works with WPC Hines, the only other female on this West Yorkshire force. They get a bit of flack from the male officers, but they’re strong women and it’s nothing that they can’t handle. WDC Miller is compassionate, hardworking (since she has to give 110% at the very least) and is full of tenacity. She’s a great character to follow for a series of books.
There is a lot of authenticity to the writing, which immediately draws you in with its style. It’s a bit like Life on Mars like in characterisations which makes it quite entertaining and there are several twists in its grittiness. There are also references to real-life past cases, which adds to the atmosphere and interest in this fast-moving plot where all sorts of secrets begin to unravel, some of which were hidden for quite some time…
I recommend this book and there are more to come from Jonathan Peace.