The Book Post #8: Rush of Blood

Rush of Blood, Mark Billingham

With my latest read, I tried something a little bit different and opted for a crime fiction book from Mark Billingham. Rush of Blood tells the story of three couples that met while on holiday in Florida. The night before they flew home, a young girl is abducted from the resort and as the couples adjust to life back in England and partake in a series of reunion dinners, the mystery of what happened to the girl begins to unfold. It is probably no surprise that throughout the book every member of the couples is a suspect, and Billingham really does keep you guessing until the very end about just what happened on that last night.

Through his inspection of the couples lives and relationships, Billingham also really neatly uncovers the frustrations and tensions that live in the shadows of everybody’s lives. By keeping you in the dark about who is to blame for the disappearance of the girl, he blurs the line between who has got a bit of a short temper due to their latest silly row with their partner and who is hiding a much darker secret. 

Not one of the couples is likeable, and this heightens the mystery around who is responsible because as a reader you don’t rule anyone out as a result of your own personal preference. At times the writing feels almost tacky, but I grew to like that, because it was in line with the persona of the characters and the stereotypical nature of the British ‘post holiday meet up’ (which lets be honest is a bit cheesy at best!).

One thing that I also really liked was the way that Billingham teased out the secrets that each couple were hiding behind the scenes and then contrasted that by showing how they would put on a performance to hide their secrets at each dinner.

The book was a definite page turner – I haven’t read any real suspense filled novels in ages and it was nice to sit up in bed reading chapter after chapter because I couldn’t put it down. I definitely think I will be adding some more thriller type books into my Goodreads pile so any suggestions are very welcome!

Have you read anything a bit out of your comfort zone lately?

Charlotte x