I’m pleased to be sharing my review of Sticks And Stones today, the 6th in Emma Salisbury’s DS Coupland series. The book was released a couple of weeks ago and Emma kindly wrote a guest post about releasing a new book in the middle of lockdown for the blog- you can read that by clicking here. As with most detective series, you can read this perfectly well as a standalone novel although if you want to know more about the characters, I’d highly recommend all of the series.
Our protagonist DS Kevin Coupland has been suspended on suspicion that he is responsible for a prisoner’s murder. In his absence his team have to deal with several crimes where the perpetrator seems clear cut but the reasons behind the crime not so much. Coupland meanwhile has to deal with attending counselling sessions which are way out of his comfort zone.
I do like the character of Coupland and very much enjoyed his latest outing. A bit like Rebus, another of my favourite fictional detectives, Coupland isn’t going to let a little thing like being suspended stop him from being involved in investigations. When a case gets under his skin, he’s rather determined. And likewise, his team isn’t keen to lose their colleague’s expertise and insight. I enjoyed that there was more focus on the team in this book while Coupland wasn’t fully in action. It was good to get to know them a bit more.
The crimes were really intriguing too with all the perpetrators acting so out of character. It was a real puzzle for me trying to work out what had gone on and how. With three main cases being investigated, I was gripped by the storyline all the way through the book.
I really enjoyed Sticks and Stones with its mix of great characters, compelling storylines and clever plotting. Emma Salisbury is one of my favourite crime writers and I was certainly not disappointed with this latest book. If you enjoy your crime novels with down-to-earth characters and strong storylines, which will keep you guessing then this book is for you.
My thanks to the author for kindly sending me a review e-copy of the book to read. Sticks and Stones is available now in ebook format and you can buy your copy here: Sticks and Stones
From the back of the book
A consultant is accused of killing his patients…
A local MP has murdered a call girl…
A teacher ploughs a minibus into a group of pupils…
It’s as though Salford is under a permanent full moon, not helped by the fact DS Kevin Coupland is fighting to hold onto his career.
Following an allegation that he was behind a prisoner’s murder in HMP Manchester, Coupland enlists the help of the one man everyone is certain has set him up – Kieran Tunney, a notorious crime boss already under investigation by the murder squad.
When Coupland reviews several cases his team have handled in his absence he suspects they are linked, in a way he cannot believe is possible. If his suspicions are correct then he must act fast to stop the unthinkable from happening – even if that means putting himself in the firing line.
Sticks and Stones is the sixth book in the popular DS Coupland series.
About the author
I write gritty, crime fiction that focuses on the ‘why’ dunnit as well as the ‘who’. I worked for a housing association supporting ex-offenders into work which provided me with a lot of inspiration. Featured in the Sunday Mail and on BBC Radio Scotland, Talk Radio Europe and a number of other news and media outlets, my novels have regularly been in the top ten Hardboiled chart and I am a recipient of the Amazon All-Star bonus for being one of their most read authors in the UK.
Fans of Mark Billingham and Angela Marsons should try my Manchester police procedural series. If you like hard-boiled crime writers Stuart MacBride, Denise Mina AND Ed James then my Scottish crime series is for you. Like living on the edge? Why not try both…
Most evenings I can be found walking the family dog on the beach near our home in East Lothian, Scotland. You can find out more on my website http://www.emmasalisbury.com and I can be found on twitter @emmasauthor and emmasauthor on Facebook.