Dead Secret by Noelle Holten #BookReview #BlogTour


Psychopaths can take root in the unlikeliest soil…
DC Maggie Jamieson crosses paths once again with Probation Officer Lucy Sherwood when a domestic violence survivor stumbles into her new refuge, unable to speak, desperate for help.

Then another case hits Maggie’s desk. A young man has been murdered, and a curious constellation of black dots has been inked onto his cheek.

That’s when DCI Hastings goes missing and Maggie uncovers a shocking connection that turns the case on its head.

Every family may hide secrets, but not every family buries them…

I am delighted to be hosting the blog tour for Dead Secret today. Many thanks to Noelle Holten, One More Chapter and Sarah Hardy from BOTBS Publicity for inviting me and for my advance digital copy of the novel, received through Netgalley.

Dead Secret is the fourth book in Noelle Holten's D.C. Maggie Jamieson series and although each can easily be enjoyed as a standalone, it has become such a treat to follow the ongoing development of the recurring characters. Following hot on the heels of the emotionally exhausting case in Dead Perfect, Maggie and her colleagues have no time to rest before another body is discovered and it soon becomes another intensely draining investigation, with the whole team affected by the implications of  the disappearance of D.C.I. Hastings and his family.
Meanwhile, Lucy Sherwood's refuge for survivors of domestic violence isn't even open before an injured young woman arrives needing her help. Lucy featured prominently in the first book in the series, Dead Inside and I loved seeing the change in her since then. She is a strong, courageous woman but her traumatic past is never ignored and I applauded the scenes where she is clearly affected by her memories of the abuse she suffered at the hands of her ex. Noelle Holten always imbues her novels with authenticity but they are invariably empathetic too; it's patently obvious that she cares for her characters - and for the real-life victims of similar crimes.
Maggie's personal life undergoes some intriguing changes here too but although I enjoyed seeing her potentially take the first tentative steps towards risking opening up to somebody, I thought her moments of burgeoning self-awareness were even more interesting. As much as I enjoy following each new investigation, it's discovering more about the characters - particularly the complex Maggie - which has really hooked me.
As the narrative switches between Maggie and Lucy's storylines, there is so much to admire about this intricately plotted thriller. The disturbing actions of the killer opens up a thought-provoking discussion about psychopathic and sociopathic behaviour while the responses of the police officers to one of their own being involved, and how they are forced to confront their growing doubts and fears is compelling throughout. I must admit to figuring out a key part of the plot but this didn't impact my enjoyment of the book; I was fascinated to find out if my theories would be proved right and to discover how and when the revelations would occur. I certainly wasn't disappointed! I might have guessed the who but there were still plenty of twists and turns which kept me absolutely riveted to this top-notch police procedural. 
As always the book ends with an enticing glimpse into what the next instalment has in store for us, and it looks to be heartbreaking -  I can't wait to read it! Dead Secret is a dark and disturbing thriller but it is deeply compassionate too; D.C. Maggie Jamieson is rapidly becoming one of my favourite fictional detectives and this series just keeps getting better.

Dead Secret is published by One More Chapter, an imprint of Harper Collins UK. Publishing links can be found here.

Don't miss the rest of the blog tour, details are below.

About the Author
Noelle Holten is an award-winning blogger at She is the PR & Social Media Manager for Bookouture, a leading digital publisher in the UK, and worked as a Senior Probation Officer for eighteen years, covering a variety of risk cases as well as working in a multi agency setting. She has three Hons BA’s – Philosophy, Sociology (Crime & Deviance) and Community Justice – and a Masters in Criminology. Noelle’s hobbies include reading, attending as many book festivals as she can afford and sharing the booklove via her blog. Dead Inside – her debut novel with One More Chapter/Harper Collins UK is an international kindle bestseller and the start of a new series featuring DC Maggie Jamieson.


  1. Thank you so much for being part of the blog tour today Karen x


Post a Comment