It’s my turn today to host a stop on the blog tour for Red is the Colour by Mark L. Fowler. Many thanks to Sarah and Bloodhound Books for the opportunity!
Author : Mark L. Fowler
Title : Red is the Colour
Series : DCI Tyler & DC Mills #1
Pages : 293
Publisher : Bloodhound Books
Publication date : July 25, 2017
It is the summer of 2002. The corpse of a 15 year old boy, missing for thirty years, is discovered in Stoke-on-Trent. The city is on the cusp of change and Chief Superintendent Berkins wants the case solved quickly.
DCI Jim Tyler has arrived from London under a cloud, moving to Staffordshire to escape his past. He is teamed up with DS Danny Mills to investigate the case, but there is tension between the detectives.
When the dead boy’s sister comes forward, describing a bright, solitary child, she points a finger at the school bullies. Important careers may be at stake.
Then one of the bullies is found brutally murdered.
As Tyler and Mills dig deeper they start to suspect a cover-up. What is the connection between the death of a schoolboy in 1972 and this latest killing? With the pressure building, and the past catching up with DCI Tyler, will he and DS Mills be able to put aside their differences in order to catch a cold-blooded killer?
DCI Tyler left his previous job under a cloud and now finds himself in Staffordshire. There’s no time to adjust to his new surroundings or circumstances as he’s thrown into a murder investigation right away when the body of a fifteen year old boy, who went missing thirty years ago, is found by a kid walking his dog. It soon turns out the victim, Alan Dale, was bullied horrendously at school. When one of the alleged bullies turns up dead, the case takes a sinister turn. Are these events connected? Were the bullies responsible for Alan’s death? Is there a major cover up going on? DCI Tyler and his new colleague, DC Mills, have their work cut out for them.
Red is the Colour is the first instalment in the DCI Tyler and DC Mills series. It is quite slow and not at all action packed but in all honesty, I thoroughly enjoyed this change of pace. It took me a while to get settled in and get used to the writing style but the case the team is investigating really held my interest throughout.
I felt the story had a bit of an old school vibe to it. No quick fixes by doing internet searches or trawling through various databases but good old fashioned pounding the pavement investigating, interviewing people and trying to figure them and their involvement out. You could almost hear the cogs of the detectives’ brain turning. I think it proved to be a real character study which rather fascinated me. Not only the potential suspects but also in the case of DCI Tyler himself, who’s struggling with his own demons.
As for the murder that’s being investigated, there aren’t necessarily massive twists and turns or red herrings but just like DCI Tyler, I was trying to fit the pieces of the puzzle together and coming up with nothing. That was me, not DCI Tyler, in case you wondered. Deep down, I never really expected a positive outcome as Alan’s story and ultimate death is quite a heartbreaking one, highlighting the devastating consequences of bullying when those with the power to make a change turn a blind eye. To that end, I think the author brought the storyline to a satisfying conclusion and maybe one of the characters might make a return appearance and still get their comeuppance in future books in this series.
Many thanks to Sarah and Bloodhound Books for the opportunity to join the tour and for the advanced copy!
Red is the Colour was published on July 25th.
Mark L. Fowler is the author of the novels Coffin Maker, The Man Upstairs, Silver, and Red Is The Colour, and more than a hundred short stories. His particular interests are in crime and mystery, psychological thrillers and gothic/horror fiction.
A graduate in philosophy from Leicester University, Mark lives in Staffordshire, and is currently writing a follow up to Red Is The Colour. When he isn’t writing he enjoys time with family and friends, watching TV and films, playing guitar/piano and going for long walks.