My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This story moves along at a nice pace that hooked me from the start. The characters are very well introduced and developed throughout the book In fact, they are still being developed towards the conclusion, which sets up Dr Hannah Nightingale and her fellow protagonists for the sequel.
There is the classic line that the seasoned police officers are very skeptical, at first, about the introduction of a psychological profiler, but gradually become convinced of her value to their investigations. By the end, of course, she proves to be absolutely vital. That storyline is hardly original, but the author manages to make it convincing.
The pace is maintained by good, strong dialogue and the dilemmas that face at least two of the main characters.
There are a few twists and turns and surprises throughout, although the main surprise was not a shock to me, even though it seemed to leap out of the blue at the two detectives and the profiler. I was expecting one major twist at the end that didn’t actually happen, so I lost my personal bet with myself.
The tension in the end play was expertly managed and I was swept along by it. A very good conclusion.
The only element that grated slightly with me was the infusion of Americanisms. Most of the narrative is in British English, and there is even a “Glossary of English Slang for US Readers” at the end of the book to help our trans-Atlantic friends. If I were American, I would have preferred this to be at the front of the book so that I could become aware of it before I started reading the first chapter.
I thoroughly recommend The Toy Breaker to any fans of the psychological thriller.