The Burning Men by Will Shindler

It’s my turn today on the blog tour for the debut novel by Will Shindler. Many thanks to Jenny Platt for my blog tour invite and review copy of The Burning Men.

What’s this book about?


Perfect for fans of Mark Billingham, Peter James and Peter Robinson.

When a development in South London catches fire mid-construction, a close-knit team of fire fighters runs in to save a man spotted at the window.

They come out without a body. They quit the service. They plan never to speak to each other again.

Five years later one of them is set alight at his own wedding. Soon after, a second is found, nothing but a smoking corpse. It appears that someone knows what they did that night. What they chose over their duty. And there are still three men left to burn . . .

DI Alex Finn and his new partner DC Mattie Paulsen are an unlikely pairing, but they need to discover who is behind these killings before the next man faces the fire.

This is first in Will Shindler’s Finn and Paulsen series – a British detective series that ranks with Mark Billingham, M.J. Arlidge, Staurt MacBride.

My review

I love it when a book doesn’t have to work too hard to grab my attention and The Burning Men is a debut novel that kicks some serious ass right from the very first page. It’s a cracking police procedural with a cast of interesting and intriguing characters who don’t follow the patterns that are often a prerequisite of a decent crime thriller.

DI Alex Finn has just lost his wife and I thought those scenes were handled perfectly with the echoes of their relationship bouncing back throughout the narrative to great effect. On his return to work he is paired with a DC who’s come from another force after a difficult case. DC Mattie Paulsen could have been played as the ultimate cliche considering her backstory but I thought the way they were brought together worked really well. And yes when I saw the name Mattie I had been expecting a male sidekick too and then I thought “oh here we go-another cliched pairing!” but I couldn’t have been more wrong…and I like being proved wrong! It’s refreshing nowadays in crime fiction!!

This is an addictive read with a gripping, gruesome and exciting read that kept me on my toes throughout. The ending was just so blooming brilliant that I read it twice and shivered both times! It was chilling but utterly flawless in its delivery and left me desperate to read more. Please tell me that this is the first book in a new series? And more importantly WHEN CAN I READ THE NEXT ONE?!

A gem of a book that I have no hesitation in recommending.

Meet the author

Will Shindler
 has been a Broadcast Journalist for the BBC for over twenty-five years, spending a decade working in television drama as a scriptwriter on Born and Bred, The Bill and Doctors. His time on these leading prime time dramas has given him a rich grounding in authentic police procedure, powerful character development and gripping narratives. He currently combines reading the news on BBC Radio London with writing crime novels and has previously worked as a television presenter for HTV, a sports reporter for BBC Radio Five Live, and one of the stadium presenters at the London Olympics. The Burning Men is his first novel.

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I am a Norfolk girl living in leafy Cheshire with my grumpy Scotsman. A mum and nana who lives for my family but who is also addicted to reading (and Marmite!) I will read almost anything but my preferred genres to review are psychological thrillers, crime procedural novels or women's fiction. My kindle is my life but I also have a substantial bookshelf in my cosy reading room where I can go to escape the stresses of family life with plenty of tea and chocolate. I am a member of netgalley and bookbridg. I review on Amazon, where I'm a Top 500 reviewer, and Goodreads. You can always find me over on Twitter @jocatrobertson for any review requests.

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