Book Review: Cold Blood by Robert Bryndza (Detective Erika Foster #5)

Cold Blood - Robert Bryndza

I’m a huge fan of the Detective Erika Foster series so needless to say, I jumped at the opportunity to read book 5 – Cold Blood.

Book Description:

She fell in love with a killer, now she’s one too.
The suitcase was badly rusted, and took Erika several attempts, but it yielded and sagged open as she unzipped it. Nothing could prepare her for what she would find inside…

When a battered suitcase containing the dismembered body of a young man washes up on the shore of the river Thames, Detective Erika Foster is shocked. She’s worked on some terrifying cases but never seen anything like this before.

As Erika and her team set to work, she makes the link with another victim – the body of a young woman dumped in an identical suitcase two weeks ago.

Erika quickly realises she’s on the trail of a serial killer who’s already made their next move. Yet just as Erika starts to make headway with the investigation, she is the victim of a brutal attack.

But nothing will stop Erika. As the body count rises, the twin daughters of her colleague Commander Marsh are abducted, and the stakes are higher than ever before. Can Erika save the lives of two innocent children before it’s too late? She’s running out of time and about to make a disturbing discovery…there’s more than one killer.

My Thoughts:

Cold Blood is book 5 in the Detective Erika Foster series, you can read any book as a standalone, but for maximum enjoyable I highly recommend you read this series in order. Erika has a great backstory and you’ll be missing out if you don’t start with book one – ‘The Girl in the Ice.’

Erika is one of my favourite fictional detectives, I’ve loved her ever since meeting her in book one, she’s fierce, flawed and one hell of a determined “copper.” I also love reading about her personal life, and the person lives of her colleagues – Moss, Peterson and the rest of the team. So, I love that these characters return in Cold Blood, and you’re hit with that instant familiarity. So herein lies the first reason I didn’t love this book as much as I did with the others, and this is based on person preference, there wasn’t much of a backstory here for these characters. Instead the backstory was that of the killers, mainly in flashbacks, a year before the murders started. This kind of made it seem like it was their story and Erika and her colleagues were just featuring in it.

We do see small developments in the backstory of ‘Erika and Peterson’ and ‘Erika and Marsh’, which I really enjoyed, even if they’re not going the way I hope – I mean that in a good way, I only want the best for Erika!

One of the things I love about Bryndza is he knows how to create thrilling cases, the murders are always brutal and chilling. The murders in Cold Blood are both of those things but I felt the additional information about the killers, added nothing to the ‘thrill factor.’ Knowing who the killers were from early on didn’t detract from my enjoyment, more I felt the killers backstory just wasn’t exciting and this made this plot harder to get into than in previous books.

Don’t get me wrong, I did enjoy this book, but the elements I disliked come across strongly because I am huge fan of this series and, based on the previous books, I was expecting to love everything about this book. I may have set my expectations too high but that’s only because I think Bryndza has created something special with this series. The parts of this novel dedicated to the case itself were a real joy to read and I enjoy the familiarity I experience when I read a book in this series. I just felt it was overshadowed by so much of the story being dedicated to the killers.

Bryndza does continue to have the ability to shock me, for instance the circumstances surrounding Erika’s attack were brilliant. And the tension at the end of this novel was immense. I remain a huge fan of this series and I am looking forward to reading book 6. I really want to stress that this isn’t a bad book and the Detective Erika Foster series remains one of my favourite crime series. And if you’re not following the trials of Erika and her team and the chilling cases they investigate, I highly recommend you do.

This book is available to buy from: Amazon UK

*My thanks to the publisher (Bookouture) for granting me access to a digital copy of this book via Netgalley*


The Detective Erika Foster series in order:

#1 The Girl in the Ice

#2 The Night Stalker

#3 Dark Water

#4 Last Breath

#5 Cold Blood

9 thoughts on “Book Review: Cold Blood by Robert Bryndza (Detective Erika Foster #5)

  1. Just scanning your review here. I’ll have to come back later and read it all the way through. I love going into books as naive as possible. I just started Last Breath and I think I’ll jump right into Cold Blood afterwards 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. In a series it’s always best to skim read future books because sometimes the blurb/review contains a spoiler for previous books. (Although I don’t think mine does lol). We’ll reconvene when you post your review lol

      Liked by 1 person

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