Blood on his Hands

Blood on his Hands

By Ian McFadyen

Format: Paperback

(13 customer reviews)

Publication Date: 28 Nov 2019


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Categories: Crime and Thrillers

ISBN: 9781912881949


When a stranger enters DI Carmichael’s local church, with blood on his hands claiming to have committed a murder, Carmichael and his team are quickly summoned.

And when the man disappears, as mysteriously as he arrived, with few clues to his identity, where he came from and where he went, Carmichael quickly realises that all may not be as it seems.

The conundrum becomes even more puzzling when, in less than 24 hours, a corpse is discovered in the boot of a Bentley car down a quiet country lane. As the body count rises Carmichael and his team remains confounded as to who is behind the murders and what motive they have for taking so many lives.

In this, the eighth gripping murder mystery from the pen of Ian McFadyen, the author once again captivates the reader with an array of beguiling characters tightly woven within an intriguing, skilfully scripted plot. It will keep you guessing right until the end.

Ian McFadyen lives in Bishops Stortford, Herts and has published 7 books in the Carmichael series so far. McFadyen has built up a strong following and is particularly well supported by library borrowers – being positioned in the top 10% of most loaned authors in the last three years. Favourably mentioned alongside Wilkie Collins and Colin Dexter, McFadyen’s titles are all available in paperback and on kindle.

“The author demonstrated his mastery of the genre. With an array of captivating characters and a dexterous plot, Ian kept turning the pages and had me guessing, wrongly most of the time, right up to the bitter end.” – Praise for Ian’s previous work (Death in Winter)


Jessica Belmont (Guest Review) - 11 Apr, 2021

This is part of a series, but Blood on His Hands can be read as a standalone, easily. What’s awesome about starting in a series like this is that it makes me want to read the rest of the series. Ian McFadyen has a new fan in me.

This book is a bit of a slow burn and took a bit for me to get wrapped up. But once the pace picked up, I was really excited. I really love the writing style. This plotline is really great and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

The characters were fantastic. They were very clearly written in a way to feel real. I felt like I was part of the team, knowing the characters like friends.

I really enjoyed Blood on His Hands. I definitely recommend checking it out!

The Divine White (Guest Review) - 11 Apr, 2021

This is the eighth book in the DI Carmichael thriller series. Even you have not read any of the others in the series, you can read this as a standalone. I’m sure you will be wanting to read the others after reading this one.

This investigation sees DI Carmichael and his team looking for a man who enters a church and admits to a murder. By the team arrive the man has disappeared and they are at a loss, not knowing who he is or who is supposed to have killed.

However, it doesn’t take long for the bodies to start piling up and the search for the man becomes more urgent.

Jara's Jamboree (Guest Review) - 11 Apr, 2021

Blood on His Hands is the 8th book in the Detective Inspector Carmichael series, although I discovered this book to be a great stand-alone story.

The characters are well written and I found the plot fast-paced and exciting.

A man appears at a church confessing to a priest that he has committed a murder but the man then vanishes. The next day a body is found in the boot of a car so DI Carmichael and his team begin their investigation into these strange circumstances. With more bodies found DI Carmichael feels the pressure to solve this murder case before the killer can strike again. There are plenty of twists and turns during their investigation as they piece this case together to find the culprit.

An excellent plot, I absolutely loved the short chapters including little snippets of each character, I was soon racing through them.

A captivating read with a great ending, I look forward to reading more of this series.

Ginger Book Geek (Guest Review) - 11 Apr, 2021

‘Blood On His Hands’ is very well written. The author certainly knows how to grab your attention from the start and draw you into the story without you realising. The author has one of those writing styles that is easy to get along with and easy to get used to. I was so convinced by his vivid and realistic descriptions that I did feel as though I was part of the story myself. I felt like another member of Carmichael’s team. I found that I became far too involved with the story in that I tried to interact with the book and ‘talk’ to the characters as if they could hear me. Yes I know, this is a work of fiction and therefore not real but I find that if I enjoy a book as much as I enjoyed this one, then I tend to ‘live’ the story as if it were real.

The Photographer's Way (Guest Review) - 11 Apr, 2021

The narrative moves quickly, split into short chapters and easy to digest sections within each of these. I find this sort of presentation excellent as it keeps the separate elements of narrative flowing smoothly, while gradually pulling information together from across the separate threads. I was drawn in from the beginning; who wouldn’t be intrigued by a man entering a church claiming to have committed murder? Whether out on the road with the police officers, or in the station briefing room, I felt part of the story. Although there were a few clues throughout the book, I was still guessing as to perpetrator and motive as the end approached.

If you enjoy crime drama, and whether or not you have read the first books in the series, I recommend this one to you. Although they will be out of synch with the eighth book, I will find copies of the others in this series to read from the beginning.

Ready Writes (Guest Review) - 11 Apr, 2021

All in all, this isn’t a thriller-crime, or horror-crime, but it’s mysterious, and impeccably thought out. McFadyen doesn’t need to gruesomely murder someone in front of us for us to be stunned. This isn’t a novel I’d give to kids, but it’s quietly confident in its ability to be great without resorting to tactics. If you enjoy crime that’s investigative, fascinating, and unpredictable, without brutal killings or scare mongering, this is something to check out. This isn’t necessarily a novel for lovers of intense characterisation, where you’ll find someone to fall for, and root for (I’m sure if you’re like me, you will anyway. Watson is my bae and I will fight you for him) but if a stunning plot with enough character growth to keep you satiated is good, add this to your TBR.

I loved this novel, is that obvious?

Berty Boy (Guest Review) - 11 Apr, 2021

Though this was book eight I read this as a stand-alone and this in no way spoiled my enjoyment of the book. The back story was explained enough to let the reader carry on reading.

This was a slow burn of a book but the quality and the storyline made me eager to keep reading and I will be eager to read more in this series! As I said slow to start but once it gets moving and the body count starts to rise the reader is gripped.

The quality of the writing is of an excellent standard and the characters are all well rounded and essential to the plot. What is unusual in this type of book is that DI. Carmichael works with a small team, but they seem to get the work done. Carmichael himself comes across as a superior and all-knowing boss. A throwback to an earlier time.

An excellent read that has me eager to read more of this series. Give it a go!

What Rebecca's Read (Guest Review) - 11 Apr, 2021

This is a really gripping murder mystery and one with a lot more details than I have ever read before. My usual crime fiction reads are a little shorter than this, but author Ian McFadyen has told this story in full with loads of description. I did like this, as the story felt very realistic and the reader is almost a fly on the wall, but at times it felt a little repetitive as the detectives repeated what they had learned and the clues they had so far. Of course, this is what real detective work must actually be like, and there must have been a great deal of research into the process involved, so this is a criticism only down to my personal taste.

“Blood on His Hands” is a well detailed, gripping piece of crime fiction. I was kept guessing who was responsible for the increasing body count right up until the end. It’s 4 stars from me!

The Book DRealms (Guest Review) - 11 Apr, 2021

The pacing was just right keeping me on my toes, trying to figure out what was going to happen next. There wasn’t even a second to get bored and in spite of being a new author to me, I felt very comfortable with his writing style. I did get a hint of the way the tale was plotted halfway through the book. But the real deal was the manner the thread was detangled to get to the culprit at the end. I, for one, was surprised by the killer’s identity.

The characters were all real, especially Carmichael. He wasn’t made out to be perfect but with flaws which made him interesting and easy to relate to. I found the cast to be intriguing with their interactions and their responses to the situations. All in all, the story made for a delightful and suspenseful read which I would recommend if you are looking for new authors to try out in this genre.

Chez Maximka (Guest Review) - 11 Apr, 2021

This book was my first meeting with DI Carmichael, and I will try to find the previous books in the series.

He is a flawed but likeable character.

There is also a crew of supporting characters, who are convincingly drawn, and some ancillary plotlines, with Carmichael’s daughter and the school bullies who make her life miserable, and background insights into the police team.

Intricate, pacy plotting and a creditable grasp on police procedures are combined to produce a real page-turner.

This gripping tale of revenge feeds on our dark fantasies of what we’d like to do to our bullies. The covert personal vendetta acquires an almost artistic flair, with a taste for dramatic effect.

Fast-moving and compelling, Blood on his hands has twists galore.

Gill Chedgey (Guest Review) - 11 Apr, 2021

Ian McFadyen was an unknown writer to me despite being prolific; this story is apparently the eighth of the Inspector Carmichael mysteries. This was one of those delightful books that initially offered no particular expectations. Indeed, the title suggested a dark, messy thriller but the book turned out to be a gripping paradox of a crime story. Paradox? Well, in spite of the fact that it is set in modern times with mobile phones, internet searches, forensic sophistication, PNC, SOCO, etc., it reads like a detective tale of old. Some solid, almost old-fashioned policing that strikes a balance with the modern methods available. Set in a small village where the police team is tight, loyal, efficient and tenacious, this complex and convoluted crime is policed and investigated systematically and methodically. For the reader that is a boon because it is easy to keep on top of events without having to scratch your head and keep referring back.

The narrative sparkles along, offering clues aplenty, as well as some which are red herrings, which certainly make the reader think. We are led down some garden paths but never allowed to roam lost. And in spite of the number of dead bodies and violence, it never presents as a dark, soulless read. The myriad characters who make their exits and entrances throughout the story bring the narrative to life with their intrigues and personalities.

I can see this book translating well to the little screen as a series like Line of Duty maybe. There’s enough substance in it. And I think that was part of its appeal – there was a familiarity about it. Not in the sense that it was predictable or formulaic but, again paradoxically, given that it is a crime story, there was a subtle and underlying warmth that pervaded the book.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to the library to get my hands (no blood) on some more Inspector Carmichael stories.

Donna's Book Blog (Guest Review) - 11 Apr, 2021

I really enjoyed this story and found it to be well developed and well written and I liked the punchy length of the chapters. It did take me a little while to get into the story but after a few chapters, I found that I was really enjoying it.

I thought that the characters were well developed and they worked well together. The book read fine as a stand-alone to me and I didn’t feel that I had missed out too much by not having read the previous books in the series but I would like to find out more about Carmichael’s history and his back story so I will be looking to check out the other books in the series.

This is the first book that I have read by this author despite it being the eighth book in the series and having read it now, I know it won’t be the last one that I pick up!

K T Robson (Guest Review) - 11 Apr, 2021

I love a good, gritty crime book, and what better way for one to start than for a man covered in blood to come running into a church, confessing to a murder?!

This book’s plot is filled with surprises and unexpected twists, and the blurb is completely right: It did keep me guessing right up until the end! I read a lot of crime books, and love having a guess at ‘whodunnit’ whilst I’m reading, but never before have I changed my mind so many times whilst I read a book! There are so many suspects to look at, so many curveballs thrown into the investigation, it’s impossible to make a guess and stick with it! And with dead bodies turning up left, right and center, it’s down to DI Carmichael and his team to figure it out, and quick.

There’s such a colourful array of characters in this story, all with their own quirks and personal dramas on the go. From the detectives, their families, down to the victims and suspects and their respective families, too. There was a good depth to each of them, no one really felt like a ‘filler’ character. This is book 8 of a series following DI Carmichael, which I can’t believe I have only just discovered! I am now keen to go back to the beginning and read them all. I think Ian McFayden has quickly worked his way onto my list of favourite crime writers!

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