I’m delighted to be joining the blog tour for Absent by Emma Salisbury and I have an extract of the book to share with you today.
THE NEW DS COUPLAND NOVEL
The worst things happen in plain sight.
When he stopped a serial killer in his tracks earlier in the year he thought that would be the end of it, but for DS Kevin Coupland his nightmare has just begun.
A child’s body is discovered hidden in a bag, kicking off a major investigation for Salford Precinct’s murder squad. Soon the National Crime Agency roll into town and Coupland is under strict instructions to play nice.
He’s got enough on his plate to worry about politics. A shock discovery in his personal life is starting to take its toll, causing him to make decisions that bring him to the attention of the powers that be for all the wrong reasons.
DS Alex Moreton returns from maternity leave to find her partner deeply troubled, but with a cold case to review she’s in no position to prevent him hitting the self-destruct button.
As he hunts down the child’s killer Coupland is forced to reflect upon his own life and find an answer to the question he’s been avoiding. Is it possible to accept the things you cannot change?
She’d stepped out in front of him from nowhere. Slam! Some daft mare wearing earphones plugged into a smartphone. He’d seen her on the pavement’s edge, hadn’t expected her to step out. He thought that she’d seen him; his brain hadn’t computed the oblivion she was in. Music blaring, head full of last night’s date, she’d turned her face in his direction, locking eyes with him as he gripped onto the steering wheel, a look of surprise on her face, her mouth forming an O shape. He jammed his foot down on the brake. Hard. The car’s tyres squealing as it came to a sudden halt. He swore; the smell of burning rubber enveloped him as he jumped out of the car.
‘I – I’m OK!’ the young woman stuttered, rubbing her hip, the only part that had made contact with his vehicle. Walking wounded. Nothing more than a cold compress and a stiff drink needed to fix her. Thank Christ he hadn’t been breaking the speed limit. ‘I’m sorry,’ she added, ‘for stepping in front of you like that. Got a lot on my mind.’ He stared at her then. Words forming in his head he didn’t want to say out loud. His glare said it all, spoke volumes in fact. Her sheepish smile froze; instead of telling her it was OK, that he was partly to blame so let’s call it quits, he kept on staring. The woman backed away, wondering if the solemn figure was one of those road rage nutters who carried a baseball bat round in the foot well of his car, ready to explode any minute.
‘You OK love?’ someone called out. A crowd had formed, do-gooders and nosey bastards, hard to tell one from the other where he was standing. She moved towards them nodding her head, grateful for the ‘oohs’ and ‘ahhs’, while looking sideways at him all the time. Already someone was ushering her into a café, patting her on the back like an obedient dog. Another tosser had their phone out, taking photos of his registration number. The blare of a car horn reminded him he was holding up the traffic. He turned to the vehicle behind him, raised his middle finger in the driver’s direction, staring until the other fella looked away. He climbed back into his car, put on his hazard lights to let the impatient twat behind him know he wasn’t going anywhere as he reached into his pocket for a cigarette. He lit it, sucked on it greedily, stared into the distance for what seemed like an age before slamming his fist down hard onto the centre of the steering wheel.
Again. And again. And again.
Thank you to Kelly at Love Books Group for inviting me to take part in the tour. And if you would like to purchase Absent you can do so by clicking the link below.
Publisher: Amazon Media
Print length: 254 pages
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