Starling, Boris Messiah

ISBN 13: 9780006512042

Messiah

4.17 avg rating
( 1,656 ratings by GoodReads )
 
9780006512042: Messiah

A stunning, shocking, wonderfully well written debut reminiscent of James Patterson and one that will catapault Boris Starling to the front rank of thriller writers.

London is in the grip of a heatwave: airless days, strange steamy nights and a killer stalking the streets. Wealthy men are being murdered to some mysterious pattern, with no clues left behind, only corpses with silver spoons in place of their tongues…

Set against this merciless butcher is DCI Red Metcalfe, an investigator with a celebrated ability to get under the skin and into the minds of the deranged killers he hunts. But as the city swelters and the body count rises, Red’s own tortured past begins to turn against him – and the city is safe for no one. Sometimes, it is said, it takes a killer to catch a killer…

The most compelling and suspenseful British thriller to come along in years, and Boris Starling is a startling and powerful talent to watch. Messiah is guaranteed to haunt your dreams…

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Review:

‘Not a book to be read alone at night… an intelligent, tense rollercoaster ride with a steely grip.’ The Times

‘Fast-paced, gritty… deserves nothing but praise’
Esquire

‘A real cliffhanger’
Sunday Express

‘You’ll be pinned helplessly to every chilling page’
Company

From the Author:

Makes 'Silence of the Lambs' look like 'Alice in Wonderland'
The first two corpses are found within an hour of each other. One man hanged with his hands trussed behind his back, the other beaten to death on his living-room floor. Both stripped to their underpants. Both with their tongues cut out. Both with silver spoons jammed into their mouths. For the first time in his career as the Metropolitan Police's leading exponent in solving serial murders, Red Metcalfe is baffled. Their deaths apart, the victims have no connection with each other. The killer has left no traces at either scene, and he makes no effort to communicate with the police. For three months, Red and his small hand-picked team - the athletic Jez Clifton, the sassy Kate Beauchamp and the irascible Duncan Warren - chase their own tails. They call the killer Silver Tongue, because that is the only name they have for him. Then Silver Tongue strikes again, and again. He beheads his third victim and flays the fourth alive. And still he never makes a mistake. Never leaves forensic evidence on the bodies, and never lets himself be seen. Five men have been killed by the time Red works out could ever have imagined. Red and his team try everything they know to catch the monster. Their journey takes them through the circles of evil which beat under the heart of London. They are sucked into the madness of millennial cults and spat out into the choking reality of media hysteria and broken marriages. More corpses appear, found sawn in half or rotted away in hermetically-sealed flats. With every successive murder, they narrow the parameters of their search further. But still Silver Tongue slips effortlessly from their grasp. As Red's desperation deepens and his self-esteem is worn away, so his own demons rise. The traffic accident which he never reported. The decision to turn over his brother Eric to the police for murder. The urges to kill and maim like the criminals he pursues. And then the killer begins to play directly on Red's diminishing grip on sanity. Silver Tongue puts hunted and hunter on a collision course towards a shattering climax, when he and Red play out a macabre re-enactment of the most famous betrayal in history. Messiah is far more than your standard thriller. It is a novel which deals on several levels with complex issues of treachery and faith, while never letting the pace flag. As a hero, Red Metcalfe is empathetic but deeply flawed, a man demonised by his past and running scared from his future. As his nemesis, Silver Tongue is one of the most chilling murderers ever to have appeared in print. Messiah is a potent cocktail of suspense, theology, philosophy and human nature, and it captures the essence of the unsettled times in which we live. Messiah is a W.H. Smith 'Fresh Talent' title for 1999.

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