A Message in Blood by Catherine Maiorisi, narrated by Abby Craden

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A Message in Blood by Catherine Maiorisi

A Message in Blood by Catherine Maiorisi, narrated by Abby Craden

A very good police procedural with crimes of a sensitive nature

This is book 3 in the Chiara Corelli Mystery series that follows the crime investigations of NYPD detective Chiara Corelli and her partner Detective PJ Parker. The series should be read in chronological order. With the new audiobook for book 4 coming out this week, I’ve decided to catch up with this one before listening to the next. I couldn’t remember why I didn’t get this audiobook when it was released and started listening without reading the blurb. Now I realise that the reason for my avoidance was that some parts are really hard to stomach.

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NYPD Detective Chiara Corelli and her partner, Detective P.J. Parker are called to solve the triple murder of a Senator, a pastor and a music industry billionaire who seemed to have been involved in an orgy. But behind their brutal murder, there’s an even more brutal reality of a child trafficking network.

The publisher’s blurb is not very specific about what this book is about, though there is a hint that there are crimes against children. There’s no way around it, this story will trigger many people because of its sensitive nature: child abuse, rape, and sex trafficking are all present here. There are accounts of all these crimes, not direct scenes describing them but that doesn’t make it any easier to listen to. I’m not sure why I kept on listening because at some points it was quite distressing, but I guess that it was Ms. Maiorisi’s talent to weave a story that kept me going.

As was the case with the previous books, this is mainly a police procedural that presents a number of suspects for the reader to try to guess who the perpetrator is. Having read most of Agatha Christie’s novels in my adolescence, this series reminds me a lot of her work. Ms. Maiorisi gradually presents a number of clues and the reader has to tie the loose ends to try to solve the case. Ms. Maiorisi is one of the best writers of procedurals in the Sapphic genre.

I mentioned that the series should be read in chronological order, this is because there is an arc that follows Corelli’s and Parker’s struggles with personal issues and professional difficulties. As the series goes by, we learn more details about their pasts and how they are coping in the present. Even though there is a romantic arc, I wouldn’t recommend this series for the romance as it’s very much in the background.

Abby Craden narrates the entire series so far which is a great choice. As usual, Ms. Craden does an excellent job with the different voices and range of emotions that this book present. Her soothing voice made it easier to endure some very hard to stomach parts. The narration elevated the story to greater levels. If you like police-procedurals and don’t mind graphic references to children’s sexual abuse, then this one is for you. 4.5 stars.

Length: 8 hours, 34 minutes

Available in Scribd

A Message in Blood by Catherine MaiorisiA Message in Blood by Catherine Maiorisi

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