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Dead Gone by Luca Veste
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A dead body and a strange note start a case Murphy and Rossi will never forget. A student from Liverpool University has been murdered, and attached to her body is a note that outlines why she was killed. The note details unethical psychological experiments that were carried out by past famous psychologists, and seems to be an explanation from the killer. Murphy and Rossi think the note is supposed to throw them off the real trail, so they don't put much stock in the contents or use it to help them discover the killer. But as more bodies are found with more notes, they realize that was a huge mistake: the notes will eventually lead them to the killer, if they pay attention to the details and link the clues they find with the information they are given. Everything seems to lead back to the university, but that almost seems to easy and obvious; they have interviewed employees and have not turned up anything suspicious. The notes with the bodies are leading the detectives to believe the killer is using his victims to do psychological experiments, to test the theories and see if he can break the minds of those he kidnaps. And the scariest part is when they realize Murphy may be the killer's next experiment. While this story wasn't really a "mystery" or suspense as I knew what was happening and who was doing what, it was still a good plot. I liked how the author tied in the psychological aspect with the experiments, and I liked how the chapters bounced around among the days of the investigation and each of the victims. There weren't really any major twists in the story, but the development was good and the characters were interesting to watch interact. ( )
  litgirl29 | Apr 17, 2017 |
I picked up Mr Veste's second offering in a little free library. Having read a couple of chapters I was intrigued by the character of Murphy enough to need to read this one first and I'm glad I did.
The thought of being imprisoned, cut off from everything you know and all human contact is a truly terrifying idea and one that he deals with brilliantly and that's not to mention all the other horrors this truly frightening book contains.
If you like serial killer stories you will love this. ( )
  angelaoatham | Feb 21, 2017 |
I enjoyed this book, but it didn't particularly do anything new in my opinion. The psychological aspects were only given surface attention and when the opportunity arose to analyse the killer, the detectives chose to disregard him as "a nutcase". ( )
  rosieclaverton | May 18, 2014 |

The debut novel from a crime star in the making - utterly gripping and perfect for fans of Stuart MacBride and Mark Billingham.
The young girl you have found isn’t the first experiment I’ve carried out. She won’t be the last.

A serial killer is stalking the streets of Liverpool, gruesomely murdering victims as part of a series of infamous unethical and deadly psychological experiments.

When it becomes apparent that each victim has ties to the City of Liverpool University, DI David Murphy and DS Laura Rossi realise they're chasing a killer unlike any they've hunted before – one who doesn’t just want their bodies, but wants their minds.

With a series of psychological twists Dead Gone will chill you to the bone, and keep you guessing until the very end.
My take...........

Net Galley book again with a debut novel from a Liverpudlian author of Italian heritage.

When I checked this on Amazon UK, the book has over 100 reviews, with 60 plus scoring it top marks and a further 24 giving it 4 stars; with the odd exception – 1 x 1 star, 2 x 2 stars - everyone seems to be loving it.

Where did it sit with me? Interesting not incredible. Satisfying not stunning. Enjoyable not excellent………shall I go on….ok you get the drift.

Girl goes missing, not for the first time, boyfriend worries, family less concerned……..fast forward, 11 months later, a different girl is found murdered in a Liverpool park, note attached to body claiming she is an experiment, police investigation starts, another body appears, another note, regular flashes to our original girl who is being held somewhere.

We start to focus on our police team. DI Dave Murphy heads the team. Its Murphy’s first murder case since something went a bit Pete Tong on his last. He’s troubled, he’s split from his ex-junkie wife and we are aware something awful happened to his parents, something he is having trouble coming to terms with, something he seems to blame his wife for.

Number two in our police team is a female – DS Laura Rossi. Younger than Murphy, single and capable. We also have Brannon, the token misfit, who strives to make himself appear more capable than he actually is, someone who endeavours to undermine Murphy to other officers at every opportunity.
The notes with the bodies point the investigation towards one of the City’s Universities and the psychology department. The case unfolds, the killer claims more victims, and more notes appear confirming “experiments” and a psychological aspect to the case. Killer starts taunting Murphy over events of the past, frequent flashes to our captive, pressure mounts on Murphy, inquiries focus on the Uni and its staff. Etc. and onto the climax and the end.

I might be somewhat glib in my narration of events, but I did enjoy it. (I don’t want to give too much detail or spoil anyone’s future enjoyment.) And for something that weighs in at either 319 pages (Net Galley count), 357 pages (Kindle) or 400 pages (paperback edition)……..I started this Sunday afternoon and finished Tuesday evening……it was a quick read.

Decent enough plot, fast-paced, interesting setting in Liverpool, with some well-drawn characters. Murphy, I guess was meant to come across as broody, troubled and enigmatic – a damaged man struggling to cope with his past and get his life back on track whilst juggling the pressures of the job. I could kind of sympathise with him, but I found myself wanting to punch him in the face, as he irritated and annoyed me, just a bit too much in the book. I’m not sure this would have been the reaction that the author was striving for, but hey any reaction beats indifference. Favourite character would be Laura Rossi – who came across as likeable, dependable and balanced.

The portrayal of the various relationships throughout the book was superb…… police with police, especially Murphy and Rossi, Murphy and his boss, Murphy and his other colleagues, Murphy and his one friend – Jess, Rossi and her family, our captive and her boyfriend…..all interesting dynamics expertly presented.

Overall a 4 from 5

Would I want read more from Veste then? Very probably, as long as the page count in his books don’t grow exponentially with each successive book.

Author's website is www.lucaveste.com/ . Dead Gone is available now; on Amazon - UK for less than a pound in Kindle format.
( )
  col2910 | Apr 17, 2014 |
This is a debut novel by the writer and centres around two main detectives working a serial killer case in Liverpool. The references to Liverpool makes this book for anyone who has knowledge of the area.

This book is well written and the story premise is thrilling and terrifying all in one. I however, found this a little slow to start. Personally I like my crime novels to start with a bang and include a little more gore and description. There are parts later on that clearly make up for the lack of gore at the beginning. Although this was a well written book I found that I never got in to the ‘I can’t put this down stage.’ Although I enjoyed reading it I had to make myself pick it back up once I had put it down. I believe my main problem with this book was that I did not really relate to the main character in the book.

I found this slow in places and hard to get into although I am sure that as the writer develops his lead detectives this may change and result in a good crime series. At present I will reserve judgement on this until I read the next in the series. ( )
  samarnold1975 | Mar 17, 2014 |
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