Ten Seconds by Robert Gold #review

Book cover of Ten Seconds by Robert Gold

Title: Ten Seconds
Series: Ben Harper #3
Robert Gold
Publisher: Sphere


After a tense birthday celebration in Haddley, journalist Ben Harper watches his boss, Madeline, get into the car that has come to collect her. He walks home, never imagining that by the next morning, Madeline will be missing.

To find Madeline, Ben will have to return to the now infamous murder case that made her journalism career over a decade ago. A case which, Ben quickly discovers, was never as simple as it seemed.

But time is of the essence, and soon it’s not just Madeline’s life on the line…

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My review:

I hugely enjoyed the first two novels in this series, so had high hopes for the third – Ten Seconds. We’re back with Ben Harper, a great lead character, and while the book starts off a bit slower than the other two did, I enjoyed the slightly calmer start – and it soon transforms into the twisty, suspenseful ride we’ve come to expect from this series!

At the beginning of the novel, we delve into the personal lives of Ben, Dani, their colleagues and families, and there’s a bit of romance in there too. We know there are a lot of unsettling feelings around someone breaking into houses in the area, but this feels very much in the background of the novel. Of course, it’s all setting up for what is to come, and Robert Gold cleverly weaves these character-building threads into the larger tapestry of the plot.

Then Madeline goes missing, and as soon as Ben realises this, the book really ramps up a gear. The investigation takes us back to a past case that made Madeline’s career – a case riddled with secrets and unexpected connections – and her father Sam turns sort-of-Detective along with Ben, as they try to track her down. These two characters bounce off each other brilliantly.

I also really like that some of the characters we meet in this book are brilliantly flawed. They’re not good or bad; rather we see into their lives and what has made them behave the way they do, and this adds so much more richness to the book.

Also interspersed throughout the narrative are snippets from an unknown character. Their story is tragic, and makes you wonder about the impact of nature versus nurture. Did their past shape their actions? The answer is cleverly left for you to decide.

There are dramatic moments in this novel but it never feels over the top. Various elements of the narrative which at first seem separate come together (a type of plot I always enjoy) to create an engaging, addictive novel. Ten Seconds could be read as a standalone but I’d really recommend you read the first two to get the most out of it!

Many thanks to the publisher, Sphere, for providing a copy of this book on which I chose to write an honest review.


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