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Kat's Book Review: A Life for a Life by Tim Ellis (Parrish & Richards Series)

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 My Rating: 3/5

 Availability: Paperback, Kindle, Nook and Kobo

 Synopsis:  What starts as a routine stabbing for Detective Inspector Jed Parish and new recruit Police Constable Mary Richards turns into the hunt for a serial killer who uses an unusual weapon to kill, and leaves numbered tokens in his victim’s mouths? As well as getting to know each other and dealing with the fallout from the Chief’s prostate cancer, the two new partners must discover the dark history behind the tokens and the connection between the victims. To do that, they need to gain access to the abandoned Beech Tree Orphanage where a terrible truth awaits.

My Review: I have seen and read numerous reviews for the Tim Ellis books but have always put them on the back burner. My sister and I had a discussion about this author recently and although he is self-published it seems he has got quite a collection of released books under his belt. My sister was something of a fan and thought I should give them a go. She also told me that because she had read all in this Richards & Parrish series, she knew that I wouldn’t be blown away by the first book; but that I should persevere regardless. With that in mind I got started.

Now one thing to note is this; Tim Ellis is a self-published author and although he has over 25 books written, his first was only released in 2010, this book being one of the earlier ones he had written. To be brutally honest I think some of the reviews left for this authors books are bordering on insulting. Don’t get me wrong this was far from perfect but Tim Ellis shows a real skill in storytelling and it’s clear from the outset he can write well. Sadly, it’s also clear that his skill needed a little more work at this stage. Having read reviews of some of his more recent books it seems like he has done just that.

The characters he introduces to the series are Detective Sergeant Jed Parish and PC Mary Richards, two police officers that eventually become partners. As an honest reviewer and will never lie, however will point out both good and bad in this book. The characters could be really good, and certainly have potential. However, Mary Richards comes across as a very immature, childish and slightly unbelievable character. Jed Parrish is certainly the better character of the two but he too still needs improvement.

The story itself had potential and the writing certainly kept my interest. However there were issues with the characters, and at times the plot lacked a bit of pace. That aside, I read it to the end and still felt like I wanted to know what happens with these two next. Without trying to sound patronising here, I am actually looking forward to continuing this series, as it seems from other readers and reviewers that his latest release (In the Twinkling of an Eye – Book 14!) is brilliant and has subsequently received 35 4 and 5 star reviews on Amazon. It will be a pleasure to watch an author grow and improve with each book he writes. For the price of his EBooks I think they are well worth the money.

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