Broken Silence (DS Nikki Parekh 2) by Liz Mistry
|Broken Silence (DS Nikki Parekh 2) by Liz Mistry|
|Reviewer: Sue Magee|
|Summary: The second book in this series reads well as a standalone. It's set in Bradford which is brought to life exceptionally well and the story had me gripped until the very end. A series to follow.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 355||Date: April 2020|
|Publisher: HQ Digital|
|External links: Author's website|
When we first meet him Stefan Marcovici has been in the UK with his daughter Maria for a while. He came expecting to work as a gardener and Maria was to be a nanny. Stefan ends up doing slave labour in a chicken factory: you can imagine what happens to an eighteen-year-old girl.
It's March 2020 (in a world not dominated by a coronavirus pandemic) and DS Felicity Springer is leaving a conference early. She spent the night with a man and is horrified that she has done so. She's also sick and puts that down to having drunk too much, so she decides to drive back to Bradford by the back roads. She'd hate to be picked up by the police in her current state. It's not going to be an easy journey - there's snow on the ground and more on the way - so Springer is happy to find herself behind a van which is clearing the way for her. Well, she was happy until she realised that the rear light had been pushed out of the way and a hand - and then an arm - was reaching through and waving, apparently in distress. Springer decided to call the problem in and follow the van. She would be shot and abducted.
DS Nikita Parekh is in charge of the case, working with DC Sajid Malik. Parekh puts aside her dislike of Springer (who'd given her a hard time the previous year) and gives her all to finding Springer. She's one of their own after all, but then the situation in Bradford becomes volatile; there are suggestions that Springer was raped at the conference and Nikki Parekh's boss, DCI Archie Hegley, is admitted to Bradford Royal Infirmary with a heart problem.
I used to work in Bradford: it's a city with heart and Liz Mistry brings it to life perfectly, to the point that the city is one of the characters of the book. I drove the streets - and the wider area - with her and Saj Malik. The story had me completely gripped: I needed to know who was behind the explosion of organised crime in the city and whether or not DS Springer was going to get out alive. The characters are all well-drawn and they stay with you. Nikki Parekh and her family are still with me: if it wasn't for the current lockdown I'd want to pop round and see that the kids are all OK.
It's good that the problems of modern-day slavery are highlighted too: Mistry does this well, although not as graphically as she might have done. The conditions in which people are forced to live in the book are dreadful - the reality is far worse. If Broken Silence highlights even one case in the real world then Liz Mistry will have done us all a big favour and I'd like to thank the publishers for allowing Bookbag to have a review copy.
For more about modern-day slavery - and again it's in Yorkshire - we can recommend Watching the Dark by Peter Robinson.
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You can read more book reviews or buy Broken Silence (DS Nikki Parekh 2) by Liz Mistry at Amazon.com.
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