Killer in the Photo by Annette Mark

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Killer in the Photo by Annette Mark

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Category: Crime
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: An action-packed thriller which moves seamlessly between Thailand and the United Kingdom. I read it far more quickly than I intended because I had to find out what happened. Definitely recommended.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 333 Date: October 2022
Publisher: Independently published
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-0645432404

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We're in Northern Thailand, at a place called Nampangsa, near Chiang Rai. You might know the area better as the Golden Triangle, where Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia meet and there's a huge crowd, partly because Thailand's Prime Minister, Chairat Anantara, is speaking. On the periphery of the crowd, Kate St George, her cousin, Lord Charles and his wife, Nina, pause to take a photo which includes a monk sleeping under a tree. A pleasant family holiday, you might be thinking - but Charles St George is the founder and CEO of Global Cuisine and Kate is the HR Manager. They're also deeply involved with the National Crime Agency and the undercover Secret Intelligence Unit, where Kate's brother, Ethan, is the Director of Intelligence. None of this stops the monk from adding botulism to the food which is going to be served to the crowd. Only Kate's quick thinking averts mass deaths, but Peter, the only child of her best friend, Carmen Tan-Williams, will die.

On the ground, it seemed that this was local food which had been contaminated with botulism. If the food hadn't been properly prepared and cooked then it could happen. But when tests establish that this is a very rare type of botulism - BTX H - it's obvious that what happened was deliberate, a dreadful act of terrorism. Attempts to establish who was behind the outrage were unsuccessful and so matters might have rested but for what happened seven months later. Charles St George took a tin of bamboo shoots from his fridge and died after eating them. Kate had tried CPR to save Peter Tan-Williams and recognised the distinctive smell of BTX H on her dead cousin. The attack at Nampangsa had obviously been a trial run and the presence of the toxin in the UK suggested that a similar attack here was highly likely.

Killer in the Photo grabbed me before I got to the bottom of the first page and it didn't let go until I'd finished. When you start reading you'll wonder if there's going to be a cast of thousands but have faith, you're in safe hands with husband-and-wife writing team Annette Mark. Relax and enjoy the story. There's a strong police team, headed up by DI Patrick Ramsay. He's an excellent detective but not so good on the admin side. Kate St George had a fling with him some years before when he was an undercover officer and it ended when he thought she was taking heroin. Backing Ramsay up are DS Paul Billinghurst, another excellent detective but with a strange ability to annoy, and DS Elliott Thompson, a computer expert.

The plotting is well-crafted and I gave up trying to predict what would happen next but what really delighted me was how the locations came to life. Thailand flows from the page - the idea for the book was born when they were living in Bangkok - and I could almost smell the food. Annette's background in catering is put to good use.

I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy of the book to the Bookbag. I'll be very interested to see what they write next.

For another thriller set in Thailand, we can recommend Hothouse Flower by Lucinda Riley. For another thriller from a husband-and-wife team, try The Lying Room by Nicci French.

You can read more about Annette Mark here.

Booklists.jpg Killer in the Photo by Annette Mark is in the Top Ten Self-Published Books 2022.

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Buy Killer in the Photo by Annette Mark at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Killer in the Photo by Annette Mark at


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