Nicholas Carr disappeared on his 18th birthday and the world has moved on. His girlfriend has gone to university, his friends have got jobs, the police have other things to look into. But his father, Richard, is still stuck on the three fingers the police dug up from a sodden Manchester wood. What happened to Nicholas on the night he disappeared and why did he never come home?
Private investigator Andrew Hunter is Nicholas's last hope - but Andrew has his own problems. There's something about his brilliant assistant, Jenny, that isn't quite right: her old teacher called it Empathy Deficit Disorder but perhaps it's not just other people she struggles to feel for?
Best-selling author Kerry Wilkinson has kindly forwarded me an advanced review copy of his latest thriller 'Something Wicked' in exchange for an honest review. Now that I have read it I feel very grateful as I really enjoyed reading this book.
Andrew Hunter is a private investigator and a very likable character but with his share of skeletons in the closet. He works in the Greater Manchester area with his assistant, the somewhat mysterious Jenny, who keeps her life to herself. Although young, she seems to be fearless and surprisingly capable of doing every job handed to her both at the office and out while prowling the streets.
One day, a man walks into Hunter's office, pleading him to help him find his son. Nicholas Carr went missing nine months earlier on the night of his eighteenth birthday after a night out with his girlfriend Lara. He never made it back home that night and has not been seen since. The police have been unable to locate the young man. They only managed to find three of his fingers in the woods. A search for his body in that area yielded nothing. The grieving man and his wife have had no closure and are desperate to know what happened to their son.
Andrew and Jenny immediately begin their investigation, however from the outset they are not sure how they'll ever succeed where the police with all its means has otherwise failed. As they begin to delve in the life of Nicholas and Lara, they however realise that these young people were getting involved into something really wicked and with people far more dangerous than what they could have ever imagined.
I really wasn't expecting the direction taken by the story through Hunter's investigation and couldn't certainly have predicted the dramatic twist towards the end of the book.
Kerry Wilkinson is famous for his best-selling Jessica Daniel series, however since I have not yet read any of those books I'm not in any position to compare them to 'Something Wicked'. All I can say is that this book is not a police procedural but a missing person investigation. It is a very enjoyable, fast-paced read full of engaging characters and realistic dialogue.
The final chapter of the book sets off the scene for the beginning of another story, so I am now really looking forward to reading the second instalment in the Andrew Hunter series.