Book Review: Someone Else’s Skin by Sarah Hilary

Some secrets keep you safe, others will destroy you…

Detective Inspector Marnie Rome. Dependable; fierce; brilliant at her job; a rising star in the ranks. Everyone knows how Marnie fought to come back from the murder of her parents, but very few know what is going on below the surface. Because Marnie has secrets she won’t share with anyone.

But then so does everyone. Certainly those in the women’s shelter Marnie and Detective Sergeant Noah Jake visit on that fateful day. The day when they arrive to interview a resident, only to find one of the women’s husbands, who shouldn’t have been there, lying stabbed on the floor.

As Marnie and Noah investigate the crime further, events begin to spiral and the violence escalates. Everyone is keeping secrets, some for survival and some, they suspect, to disguise who they really are under their skin.

Now, if Marnie is going to find the truth she will have to face her own demons head on. Because the time has come for secrets to be revealed…

What I Thought:

SomeoneElsesSkin_v13 SH.jpgTemperance Brennan, VI Warshawski, Kinsey Millhone, Lacey Flint – I love crime novels and I love all of these heroines so I was very pleased to add DI Marnie Rome to this prestigious list.

Someone Else’s Skin is Sarah Hilary’s debut novel and it more than stands on its feet against better known and established works in the same genre. It’s really clever in getting you to think one thing is happening when what you actually needed to take notice of is right under your nose – just when you think you’re getting it (and getting a bit cocky about it, I might add) there’s a sudden twist that will have you facepalming at your own stupidity.

As the book starts, you’re thrown immediately into Marnie’s personal baggage and as the book progresses more and more layers are stripped away, until you realise the level of personal anguish Marnie has been dealing with for five years and it’s really a wonder the woman is still putting one foot in front of the other. She really is very well written, and at the beginning of the book is only just the right side of standoffish. I know that a second book is in the offing, so it will be interesting to see how she develops – will she be prickly for good, or will Ed Belloc mellow her? We shall see.

There are so many themes woven through the plot of Someone Else’s Skin, including domestic violence and religious ‘honour’ crimes, and it is impeccably researched, with facts related to the reader without seeming shoe-horned into the sharp and spare prose.

I can highly recommend Someone Else’s Skin (which is out today – Happy Publication Day!) and will definitely be reading Marnie Rome’s second outing.

Note: I was provided with an ebook of Someone Else’s Skin via NetGalley, but all views are my own.

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