Perfect Remains by Helen Fields
One of Scotland's most popular literary genres, Helen Fields' new novel, Perfect Remains, brings new possibilities for narrative style and plot to the crime-thriller franchise, with the first in hopefully a long line of D. I. Callanach books.
The novel is fast paced and exciting from the beginning, with Fields skilfully using her personal background in criminal law to ground the text. Masterfully intertwining a high intensity narrative with believably likable, and unlikable characters, Perfect Remains covers a lot of ground – from Edinburgh to the Cairngorms, kidnap to murder, and from accusations of rape to a religiously orchestrated conspiracy. The dual nationality of the protagonist is complemented with a dual narrative structure that at times bleeds out into three, even four storylines, adding to the momentum. Weaving this plot together in what seems effortless fashion, the book takes the readers on a psychological journey into the mind of a killer, and of the man trying to catch him.
The energy created in the first few pages mounts without a wasted word, image or full stop. This is not just a book about an intelligent psychopath who kidnaps women. This is a book about truth and lies, enemies and allies, and strengths and weaknesses. A must read for any fans of the crime-thriller genre, and, perhaps, even more so if you are not. Perfect Remains is the definition of a page turner. [Rosie Barron]