If you enjoy slow burning thrillers, you may fancy reading The Blame, the new novel from Kerry Wilkinson. Only published on 16th February 2021, this is a read that interweaves the legacy of childhood friendships and small town dynamics with long held secrets and murder.
It is the story of Harry, Paige and Richard who thought they would be friends forever. But then one day on their way home from school, Harry and Richard take a shortcut and discover a dead body. Graham, a boy in their year has been murdered.
Almost twenty years on with Graham’s murder still unsolved, Harry is now living in Toronto, thousands of miles away from his small hometown of Macklebury. Out of the blue he receives a phone call from Paige telling him that Richard has been accused of the recent murder of one of their old teachers.
Even though he doesn’t really know Richard as he used to, Harry returns home to Macklebury to ‘support’ his old friend.
For me The Blame is an interesting read, especially the exploration of the small town dynamics. Even though in my view as a reader we never really get to know Harry, for me the claustrophobia he feels in returning to Macklebury is visceral. I feel that this was cleverly portrayed and I really empathised with Harry about this.
However I would have been keen to explore Harry, Paige and the other characters more throughout the narrative. As a reader there is a lot that we never found out. For me this was a tad frustrating.
I quite enjoyed this book and read it over two days. I also never worked out the ‘who dunnit element’ and was suprised by the ending – it was a twist that worked well. As I say The Blame is a slow burner, but if I’m honest, for me it was a bit too slow at times.
Thank you to Sarah Hardy from Bookouture inviting me to the blog tour The Blame. To read the reviews from my fellow book bloggers also on the tour, please see below.