Delighted to host a stop on the blog tour for ‘Bound’ by Vanda Symon! I reviewed this excellent crime fiction book a while ago and you can read my review HERE but today I have an extract to share with you. With thanks to Orenda Books and Random Things Tours.
Author : Vanda Symon
Title : Bound
Series : Sam Shephard #4
Pages : 320
Publisher : Orenda Books
Publication date : March 18, 2021
| ABOUT THE BOOK |
When the official investigation into the murder of a respectable local businessman fails to add up, and personal problems start to play havoc with her state of mind, New Zealand’s favourite young detective Sam Shephard turns vigilante.
| EXTRACT |
Tears started to overflow and trickle from the corners of his eyes. He leaned back against the wall and looked up at the ceiling. ‘The only way I knew for sure it was him was from his clothes, it was that bad. I ran to find Mum, and she was on the floor. I thought at first they’d killed her too, because she had blood coming out of her head, but then she moaned. They’d tied her to a chair but it was on its back so I suppose she must have accidentally tipped it over. When I ripped the tape off her mouth she gasped like she could finally breathe properly, like they had just about suffocated her. What if she’d died too?’ He paused before asking me, in a quiet and tremulous voice, ‘I didn’t do that to her shoulder when I was trying to free her, did I? I tried to get her from the chair but it seemed to take forever and I had to tip it on the side to undo her.’ His face was crumpled with anguish.
‘No, you don’t need to worry about that. It most likely happened when the chair tipped back.’ He didn’t look that relieved. ‘Did you ring the police straight away?’ I asked.
‘No, I rang the ambulance, as soon as I realised Mum was alive. I guess they sent the police.’ ‘And when you were driving home from practice in town, you came back via State Highway One and turned off at Warrington?’ He nodded. ‘Did you notice any other vehicles travelling on the back road?’
‘There probably were some, I couldn’t say.’
I could see he was exhausted. There was no point in pressing him further tonight. He’d had enough to deal with.
‘In the morning I’ll need to go over everything with you again in order to make a statement, but for now, we need to find you somewhere to stay tonight and to contact your relatives. Who will be the best person to get in touch with first?’
‘Grandad. He lives in Dunedin.’
‘Is that your mum’s or your dad’s dad?’
‘Mum’s. Dad’s parents died when I was a little kid.’
I felt a twitch of relief. I wouldn’t be informing a man of his son’s death, but it would still be one of those phone calls we all dreaded.
‘Do you have his number?’ The question seemed to flick a switch on his face, and he looked at me first with a hint of excitement, then almost horror.
‘What is it?’ I asked. He reached into the back pocket of his jeans and pulled out his cellphone. It looked very high end and probably cost more than my car. He handed it over to me like it was tainted with some disease.
‘I, um, when I got home and saw what happened, I put it on video, in case it could help the police.’ I looked at the boy in amazement, that he could be composed enough to think of it, but then his was the cellphone generation; they were born with them practically grafted to their hands. I could also understand his distaste at the burden the phone carried, a cinematographic record of the destruction of his family.
‘Thank you, Declan, that was very clever thinking. I’ll need to hold on to it for a while, if you don’t mind. We’ll get the numbers of your relatives off this too. I’ll go and ring your grandad now.’
I went to stand, but he pulled my arm, making me sit back down. He leaned his head back against the wall, and when he turned back towards me, I could see the tears tracking down his cheeks again and the pain etched in his face.
‘I was late,’ he said, his voice hoarse and laden.
‘What do you mean?’
‘My curfew was ten, I was supposed to be home by ten, but we lost track of the time and I didn’t get in until half past. If I hadn’t been late, I might have been able to stop it, or save him, or something. It’s all my fault.’
I looked at his young, tortured face, and my heart ached for the undeserved burden he would carry, regardless of anything I said to try and persuade him otherwise. Jesus, poor kid. I reached out and held his hand.
‘It’s all my fault,’ he sobbed.
If you want to find out what, if anything, is Declan’s fault, you know what to do!
| ABOUT THE AUTHOR |
Vanda Symon is a crime writer, TV presenter and radio host from Dunedin, New Zealand, and the chair of the Otago Southland branch of the New Zealand Society of Authors. The Sam Shephard series has climbed to number one on the New Zealand bestseller list, and has also been shortlisted for the Ngaio Marsh Award for Best Crime Novel and for the CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger. She currently lives in Dunedin, with her husband and two sons.