When I was in Grade Six, I read Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None (Side issue: I remember it being called Ten Little Indians but, thankfully, times changed and a less dodgy title came into favour – apparently it had an even dodgier title before that, but I can’t even bring myself to type it. But I digress).
Book scared the bejeepers outta ten-year-old Katie.
I didn’t read another crime novel until I chanced upon a Patricia Cornwell novel while mining my mother’s bookshelf. I think I thought it would be a bit like the Joanna Trollope book that was my previous discovery from the treasure trove of “grown-up” fiction.
Thirteen-year-old Katie thought wrong.
I swore off reading crime for good until I started working a book shop at around the time a certain inked Nordic computer hacker lady stomped fiercely onto the scene. You really couldn’t work in a book shop in 2009 without reading that series. Customers expected it. So I, dutifully, read.
Bejeepers, though. Bejeepers.
No more crime for me until people on the interwebs started going gaga over a YA crime series by an emerging Aussie author called Ellie Marney. We share a publisher and I (foolishly), thought, “It’s YA. How scary can it be?”
NOT RIGHT BEJEEPERS BUT OH MY GIDDY AUNT WAS IT GOOD.
I inhaled Every Breath and Every Word, fell a bit in love with Mycroft, wished I was Watts, wondered why I never bothered to read Sherlock Holmes (two words, probably: Christie and Bejeepers), and waited with so much shuddery, trembly, but oh-so-baited breath for the conclusion – Every Move.
I actually did a (slightly nervous) happy dance when the book finally dropped from Marney’s amazing imagination and (via strange modern magic), on to the screen of my e-reader. I was happy because I knew it would be awesome. I was nervous because I knew it would be scary. Also, I’d come to adore these characters. I was so invested in their story, and the mystery obsessing them. I needed Ellie Marney to end this thing well.
And, oh boy, did the lady pull it off and then some. There was every bit as much thrill and page-turn as the other novels. It packed a walloping emotional punch, too, and concentrated even more on the psychology and inner worlds of the protagonists. The action was epic. The fight scenes were astonishing (and a bit full-on for this squeamish little wuss). Plus, in this final instalment, Marney introduced a brilliant new character in Harris Derwent. I kind of have a confession to make about Harris – much as I dote on Mycroft, I kind of cheated on him a bit with Harris.
Oops. But also, swoon.
Ellie, if you’re listening? Spin-off series on Harris. Thank you.
Like every great series, I’m sad this one is over, but I can’t wait to see what this astonishingly talented writer does next (Ellie? See above comment, please. Thank you).
Every Move is the sauce. Seek it out. Run, if you will.
Next stop? I’m heading North to Queensland, and a writer I’ve loved for ages, called Christine Bongers. Her book is called Intruder. I’m hoping it isn’t a bejeepers-inducer, but with a name like that …
Wish me luck!