When a young boy discovers the body of a woman beneath a thick sheet of ice in a South London park, Detective Erika Foster is called in to lead the murder investigation.
The victim, a beautiful young socialite, appeared to have the perfect life. Yet when Erika begins to dig deeper, she starts to connect the dots between the murder and the killings of three prostitutes, all found strangled, hands bound and dumped in water around London.
What dark secrets is the girl in the ice hiding?
As Erika inches closer to uncovering the truth, the killer is closing in on Erika.
The last investigation Erika led went badly wrong… resulting in the death of her husband. With her career hanging by a thread, Erika must now battle her own personal demons as well as a killer more deadly than any she’s faced before. But will she get to him before he strikes again?
What I liked: I’m always up for a suspenseful murder mystery. From what I’ve read this is Mr. Bryndza's debut as an author. He did pretty well, not only with the suspense part but with the characters.
The book is set in the United Kingdom and I enjoyed the difference when compared to police procedurals set in the United States. Remember, cops in the UK don’t all have guns. I always wondered how that worked out for them and in what instances deadly force would/could be used.
I won’t regurgitate the synopsis as I was focused mainly on the characters. Ericka is a unique character. At different points in The Girl in the Ice, I was sympathetic to her situation and then she would do something that just made me want to smack her. Due to the murder victim, politics play a huge part in how the case progresses. Sad but true, depending on who the victim is, determined how the police investigated the case.
All the characters in the book were well written, I thought. Ericka is not one to play politics and she’s suffering through her own personal tragedy. I expected more from her boss on this case but Ericka knew him in the past and knew which buttons to push to get what she wanted. She’s a loner, tenacious, and extremely smart about her work. I can see all those traits causing her trouble in future books.
The suspense part of The Girl in the Ice was well developed. I knew there was more to the case than the initial murder but the way Mr. Byrndza directed the storyline, I had a hard time not only figuring out the murderer(s) but the driving force behind it.
What I didn’t like: While I enjoyed the story, a first book in a series has a lot of work to do in order to hook the reader to continue. There were parts of the story that seemed a bit slow and I hated that there were times when Ericka’s smarts seemed absent. You know the old saying, don’t go there alone, well, Ericka did and it just appeared too orchestrated for the storyline.
I certainly enjoyed the price of The Girl in the Ice at $0.99 on Amazon ($3.99 at B&N). I’m not sure I’m going to jump right into the next book in the series. It’s not one I see binge reading to get caught up.
Overall, if you like murder mysteries and a setting outside the US, then you should take a chance on The Girl in the Ice.