The Last Dance by @markbillingham #review @BooksSphere

Book cover of The Last Dance by Mark Billingham

Title: The Last Dance
Series: Detective Miller #1
Mark Billingham
Publisher: Sphere


Meet Detective Miller: unique, unconventional, and criminally underestimated…

A double murder in a seaside hotel sees grieving Detective Miller return to work to solve what appears to be a case of mistaken identity. Will this eccentric, offbeat sleuth find answers where more traditional police have found only a puzzle?

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My review:

After a long wait of 20 years, Mark Billingham returns with a captivating new book in The Last Dance, marking the beginning of the Detective Miller series. Known for his gripping D.I Tom Thorne series, Billingham proves once again that he delivers an engrossing read!

In The Last Dance we’re introduced to Detective Miller; a sharp, witty investigator who’s also a bit of a wind-up merchant and whose wife was tragically killed just 6 weeks ago. I instantly warmed to him despite the fact he evidently doesn’t know when to stop joking around, which we assume is a way of coping with the grief and trying to process it all. Whilst the Tom Thorne series felt a lot more dark and brooding, The Last Dance has a lighter feel to it with plenty of humour.

When a double murder occurs, Miller is put on the case with DS Sara Xiu, who has been filling in for his role whilst Miller was on compassionate leave. Together they make an entertaining pair, with Miller’s constant wisecracks and Xiu’s deadpan (or perhaps just confused) retorts or stony silences.

The plot is fast-paced and intriguing, without feeling too far-fetched. I enjoyed Miller’s interactions with his colleagues and the people around him, and the way his wife’s death is weaved into the story piqued my interest too. It had a great ending too!

I am very excited to read more from this series and would recommend The Last Dance to anyone looking for a solid, entertaining and funny crime novel.

My rating: 4.5/5


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