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  • Writer's pictureKindig

***** - The Killing Choice





'Leave your daughter with me, or I will kill you both'

It felt like a normal Friday evening before Karl and his daughter Leah were ambushed by a figure in a blank mask. At knife point, Karl is forced to make an impossible choice. Stay and die, or walk away from Leah and take this thug's word that they both will live.

Should Karl trust a villain and leave his daughter with a knife at her throat? Could he ever live with himself if he did?

It's not long before more seemingly unconnected and innocent people across London are offered a deal in exchange for their life. More blood is spilled, more families shattered, and more people are left to suffer with the consequences of their decisions.

DI Alex Finn and DC Mattie Paulsen must hunt for a killer that appears to have no face, no motive and no conscience before more victims are forced to make their choice.


For my review of the first book in the DI Alex Finn series ‘The Burning Man’ I looked at the pitfalls of the crime genre and how the book managed to steer clear of them (if you haven't read it yet, check it out here: For the sequel ‘The Killing Choice’ I will continue this trend and see how the next book in the series compares!

My first criteria was to have an intriguing and interesting crime. The Killing Choice certainly holds up in this regard, with victims being made to choose which of them will die. This leads to an interesting dilemma and ‘survivor’s guilt’ for the victims and also a wider discussion as to the hypothetical solution with the press and other characters. The crimes also escalated really well and I liked a few red herrings which were introduced along the way. There was a moment when I (correctly) guessed the perpetrator about halfway through but the actual motive still alluded me until right towards the reveal.

My second criteria was to have realistic and well-rounded main characters. This series does fall into the ‘DI OldSchool GrizzleMan and his partner DC Woman WithIssues’ trope but I still think it’s handled well. In particular we learn a lot more about the personal life of Mattie Paulson which was something I felt was lacking in the last book. Conversely, we didn’t get too much from DI Finn in this book – we get a bit of him struggling and also trying to rebuild his life after his wife left him but Shindler is taking his progression nice and slowly which I appreciate and takes me on nicely to my next category.

My last criteria was leaving the series space to progress. This story in particular was a standalone and is nicely wrapped up in this book. However as we have learnt more about the characters I am interested to see where they will go in future books, particularly as Finn is trying to turn his life around. We are also introduced to an estate and the gangs that inhabit it which may crop up in future books.

Overall, The Killing Choice, just like it’s predecessor is a well-constructed crime thriller and I’m excited to read the next one in the series. Thank you to NetGalley & Hodder & Stoughton for the chance to read the ARC in exchange for an honest review.


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