The Bone Field

The Bone Field - Simon Kernick

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley

in exchange for an honest review.

 

A police procedural that quickly morphs into something more like a thriller with a tough ex-special forces hero, now a Detective Sergeant with the Metropolitan Police, but very much an outsider because of his history and suspended halfway through the story - though he of course goes on investigating unofficially and illegally.

 

The story is set in London, but starts with a disappearance years earlier in Thailand. Then the body of the young woman who disappeared turns up in England. Can it really be her? And why is the body of a thirteen-year-old girl who disappeared from her home in England at much the same time buried in the same suburban garden?

 

There is sex-slave-trafficking. There is a serial sexual predator and murderer. There is ritual magic and human sacrifice. There is perhaps the nastiest villain ever to sully the screen of my Kindle Reader - not just nasty, but smelly - yes, downright gross, as well as evil. Horrifying - and certainly the one whose hands I would least like to fall into!

 

It is a gripping must-read.

 

However, it does need some serious editing. Not only is not properly formatted for Kindle, but it is full of jarring Americanisms despite the fact that the setting is entirely British and that there are no American characters whatsoever in the story. The Metropolitan Police (the Met) are referred to repeatedly throughout the story as "the Feds". Homeless down-and-outs are "hobos". A black Londoner thinks of his mother as a "ho" yet at the same time thinks of "Yankee rock music". I could go on, but I won't. American readers might not notice this, I suppose, just as a British reader might not notice similar lapses in a book set in the US and written by a British author. But to a British reader, they end up spoiling an otherwise enthralling story. And for this reason four stars instead of the five it would otherwise deserve.