I have something a bit different to share with you today. It’s a book which brings together a lot of my interests, theology, philosophy and crime. I have had an interest in theology and very nearly studied it for my degree, though I changed over to English at the last minute I was still able to take some modules of philosophy whilst at university.
All links marked with * are Affiliate Links, please see my Disclosure page for more information.
Although my interest in crime is usually reserved for the television – I love watching shows like Elementary, Murdoch Mysteries and Criminal Minds. I found that I really enjoyed the crime solving element of Reprobation and may have to look at adding more of these kind of books to my TBR list.
Author: Catherine Fearns
Author Bio: Catherine Fearns is a writer from Liverpool, UK. Her first novel, a crime thriller called ‘Reprobation’, will be published by Crooked Cat Books in October 2018. As a music journalist Catherine is a regular contributor to Pure Grain Audio, and she has also published numerous pieces of short fiction and non-fiction.Catherine has a degree from Oxford University and a Masters from the London School of Economics. She began her career as a financial analyst, but after having four children she retrained as a breastfeeding counsellor. Having lived in several countries, she recently moved to Switzerland, where she discovered her love of writing and is a member of the Geneva Writers’ Group. She plays the piano very well but prefers to play the guitar very badly. Oh, and she likes metal music. A lot.
Synopsis: Are you one of the elect?
Dr. Helen Hope is a lecturer in eschatology – the study of death, judgement, and the destiny of humankind. She is also a Calvinist nun, her life devoted to atoning for a secret crime.
When a body is found crucified on a Liverpool beach, she forms an unlikely alliance with suspect Mikko Kristensen, lead guitarist in death metal band Total Depravity. Together, they go on the trail of a rogue geneticist who they believe holds the key – not just to the murder, but to something much darker.
Also on the trail is cynical Scouse detective Darren Swift. In his first murder case, he must confront his own lack of faith as a series of horrific crimes drag the city of two cathedrals to the gates of hell.
Science meets religious belief in this gripping murder mystery.
Categories: Murder Mystery, Crime, Religion,
Publication Date: 16th October 2018
Publisher: Crooked Cat Books
Rating: 4 stars
Content Warnings: As you might imagine there are some grizzly descriptions of the murder victims bodies.
Review: I must confess, I am not usually drawn to crime or murder mystery books but with the elements of theology I found Reprobation impossible to resist (and almost impossible to put down once I started it!). The writing style in wonderfully immersive and though I have not spent much time in Liverpool, Fearns is able to create a wonderful sense of place with her descriptions of both places and people.
I found Dr Helen Hope to be such an interesting protagonist, she has incredible depth and is totally unique. We follow not just the murder case over the course of the book but we also follow Helen’s journey of self-discovery too. I found myself looking forward to the parts of the book which feature Helen, and later Mikko as well, and looking back I think I prefer those parts most of all.
The murder case itself was, as you might expect for a murder mystery, both very grizzly and contained a number of twists and turns. The case left me guessing until right at the very end – no spoilers here though! The pacing of Reprobation was perfect, the mystery and the vivid characters drawing the reader along until the mystery is solved.
There is such a richness to the case, I loved all of the religious and ethical elements in the book. It certainly gave me a lot to think about, and just as the case gives Dr Helen Hope a great deal to think about. I found it so interesting the way that Calvinist doctrine, the murder investigation, Dr Helen’s life and Mikko’s music are all woven together. I found myself unwilling to put the book down, because I simply had to know what happened next.
The end of Reprobation was fantastic, even though I did not see it coming. The only thing I wished for was a little more after the conclusion of the case. I was left wanting more information about Dr Helen Hope and Mikko – even if it was just a short epilogue to highlight how the characters are dealing with the fall out from the events in the book.
If you like murder mysteries, then I would definitely recommend Reprobation. It is a wonderful engaging book with an interesting plot with a multitude of twists and turns and an amazing cast of vivid and unique characters. The added religious elements to the book make it really stand out and it’s not a book I will soon forget!
If you like the sound of Reprobation then you can enter the giveaway, below, for a chance to win your very own copy along with some goodies too. But if you simply can’t wait you Reprobation is available from Amazon*.
Giveaway to win a gift pack which would include signed book, tote bag, t-shirt, magnet, guitar picks, temporary tattoos and postcards (Open Internationally)
a Rafflecopter giveaway
*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome. Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.
I received an ecopy of Reprobation for the purpose of this blog tour, however all words and opinions are my own, except for the synopsis and author bio.