Lies to Tell (DI Clare Mackay) by Marion Todd

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Lies to Tell (DI Clare Mackay) by Marion Todd

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Category: Crime
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: It's book three in a series which is coming together well. This time we're looking at gun running, witness protection and murder. A good read.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: Date: June 2020
Publisher: Canelo

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When we meet up with DI Clare Mackay again she's at Daisy Cottage on the outskirts of St Andrews with her English Bull Terrier, Benjy. She's just had a postcard from Geoffrey Dark and he's in Provincetown, Cape Cod. He wishes that she was there, but Clare's struggling to think of what he actually is to her now. Is he her boyfriend? Her ex-boyfriend? She can't work it out and thinks that Geoffrey probably can't either. Work's about to get very busy and she can't work out why DCI Alastair Gibson has cancelled a meeting she'd arranged without discussing it with her first. They're off somewhere top secret.

She and Gibson have never really got on, but she's sympathetic when Gibson tells her that he and his wife, Alison, are divorcing. He's about to move out of his home and he's already had to trade down to a less expensive car. The morning is going to get stranger though - they're off to meeting with an ethical hacker, Gayle Crichton, who is going to use an office at St Andrew's to look into a possible leak from Police Scotland. Mackay and Gibson are allowed to leave under terms of strict security: they mustn't discuss what they've been told inside any building or vehicle and they must not confide in anyone else about what they've been told.

Clare would normally have told her DS, Chris West, but doing so could cost her her job. The atmosphere between them is a little strained, but they have to look into the murder of a student, Johannes Muller. Muller's friend, Marek Schmidt had come to the station to report Johannes missing a few days ago but had left suddenly. Clare Mackay is keen to talk to Marek. DCI Gibson is on edge as a big case he's been working on is finally coming to trial in Edinburgh. Tamsin Quinn has been granted immunity if she will testify against her husband, Phil Quinn on charges of gun-running. Gibson knows that it could all very easily go wrong and Tamsin Quinn is in a safe house, waiting for the beginning of the trial. Ethical hackers have to be forgotten about as far as possible!

I was delighted when Lies to Tell came my way. The first two books in the series were good reads and the series has a great deal of promise. The characters are excellent: Mackay isn't perfect but she's doing her best and a rather extravagant car has cheered her up after the departure to the States of her boyfriend. She's doing her best but knows she's not infallible. There's a good pairing with DS Chris West, whose fiancee thinks he's on a diet but doesn't know about the hidden stock of Wagon Wheels, or the clandestine visits to the chip shop.

I had my doubts about one character (rightly, as it turned out) but it didn't spoil my enjoyment of the book: I might have had strong suspicions about the who but I certainly hadn't grasped the motivation. It's a story with plenty of twists and a great deal of action. I'd like to thank the publishers for letting Bookbag have a review copy: I can't wait for what Marion Todd writes next!

The book would read quite well as a standalone, but you'd get more out of it if you'd read one or both of the earlier books. The current pricing means that for less than a fiver you could get three very good books. What's not to like?

Marion Todd's DI Clare Mackay novels in Chronological Order

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Buy Lies to Tell (DI Clare Mackay) by Marion Todd at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Lies to Tell (DI Clare Mackay) by Marion Todd at


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