“Investigating a severed hand found on the 3rd green of a Cumbrian golf course was not how Detective Inspector Avison Fluke had planned to spend his Saturday. So when a secretive unit from London swoop in quoting national security, he’s secretly pleased.
But trouble is never far away. A young woman arrives at his lakeside cabin with a cryptic message: a code known to only a handful of people and it forces Fluke back into the investigation he’s just been barred from.
In a case that will change his life forever, Fluke immerses himself in a world of new age travellers, corrupt cops and domestic extremists. Before long he’s alienated his entire team, made a pact with the devil and been arrested under the terrorism act.
But Fluke is only getting started. A voice has called out to him from beyond the grave and he has no intention of ignoring it.”
Oh. My. Gosh. I was really not expecting this! Body Breaker is the second book in the DI Avison Fluke series but do not let that put you off if you like me also have not read the first in the series as Body Breaker can work perfectly as a standalone. As the book opens we meet Fluke on a Saturday afternoon having a well deserved break, but not for long though, as trouble is never far behind. A severed hand on a Cumbrian Golf Course sees Fluke more hand the case over to a specialist and secretive unit from London, which he is more than happy to do. Fluke isn’t rid of the case long though, as links to his past and further developments sees it hurtling back like a boomerang. With a vested interest in the case, Fluke is determined to find the truth, no matter what he has to do.
Apart from the en pointe police procedural, this book for me is all about the characters. I clicked with Fluke almost immediately and could not get enough of the dark humour and his relationship with DS Towler (who is also Fluke’s best friend). There were times when I was laughing out loud my partner had to ask me what was so funny. This style of writing just spoke to my personality and engaged wholly with my black sense of humour. This was one of those books I did not want to end and not just because of the solid plot, but for the banter and camaraderie that I felt I had somehow became part of.
Clear your diary, switch your phone off and get the kettle on before you start reading as Body Breaker is one of those indulgent books that once you sink into it you won’t want to stop until the finish. I think I’ve just found myself a new writer.
Thanks to Mike Craven, Caffeine Nights and Noelle Holten for the advanced reader copy and chance to be part of the blog tour.
About the Author
Although he was born in Cumbria, Mike Craven grew up in the North East before running away to join the army as soon as he was sixteen. After training as an armourer for two and a half years (that’s an army gunsmith to you and I), he spent the next ten travelling the world having fun. In 1995 he left the army, and after a brief flirtation with close protection and bodyguarding, decided on a degree in social work with specialisms in criminology and substance misuse. In 1999 he joined Cumbria Probation Service as a probation officer, working his way up to chief officer grade. Sixteen years later, he took the plunge and accepted redundancy to concentrate on writing full-time, and now has entirely different motivations for trying to get inside the minds of criminals.
Mike’s first DI Avison Fluke novel, Born in a Burial Gown, was shortlisted for the Crime Writers’ Association Debut Dagger Award and was published on 11th June 2015 by Caffeine Nights. Also available is his award winning collection of short stories featuring Fluke and his colleagues from the Cumbrian Force Major Incident Team, Assume Nothing, Believe Nobody, Challenge Everything. Body Breaker, the hotly anticipated follow up to Born in a Burial Gown, is out on May 25th.
In March 2017, Mike signed a two book contract with the Little, Brown imprint, Constable, for his new series starring the National Crime Agency’s Washington Poe, an expert in serial killers and seemingly motiveless crimes. The first Poe book – as yet untitled – will be published in hardback in spring 2018.
Between leaving the army and securing his first publishing deal, Mike found time to keep a pet crocodile, breed snakes, get married, and buy a springer spaniel named Bracken. He lives in Carlisle with his wife, Joanne, where he tries to leave the house as little as possible. Mike is also one third of Crime Ink-Corporated, a trio of northern writers who take writing out for the community and host events such as England’s first Noir at the Bar.
Mike’s first DI Avison Fluke novel, Born in a Burial Gown, was shortlisted for the Crime Writers’ Association Debut Dagger Award. He is a member of both the Crime Writers’ Association and the International Thriller Writers’ Association.