I’m delighted to be joining the blog tour for The Last One To See Her by Mark Tilbury today on my blog.
He says he is innocent…so why did he lie?
Mathew Hillock was the last person to see eleven-year-old Jodie Willis alive. When her dead body turns up four days later in his garden shed, the police think he’s guilty of her murder. So do most people in the town. But there’s no DNA evidence to link him to the crime.
Battling the weight of public opinion and mental illness due to a childhood head trauma, he sinks into a deep depression.
Can Mathew do what the police failed to do and find evidence linking the real killer to the crime?
The Last One To See Her is a terrifying story of what happens when you’re accused of a crime and no one believes you are innocent.
Mark Tilbury writes dark and gritty crime fiction. In his latest book, The Last One To See Her, eleven-year-old Jodie Willis disappears after she visits the local shop. Three people are the last to see her alive, Matthew Hillock, a young man who has suffered a horrific trauma in his past, Jim Bentley, a drug dealer who has been on the police radar for years, and the shop owner. But witness statements quickly complicate the case. Matthew soon finds himself at the centre of the police probe, but even he isn’t confident of his innocence. As the police investigation deepens, Matthew has to consider the unthinkable.
The Last One To See Her was a really gripping read. Like Matthew’s family, I couldn’t believe that he was the one responsible for Jodie’s disappearance, and even as the evidence mounted, I felt sure that someone was setting him up. Matthew has been left with brain damage following a horrific attack on his family several years earlier when his father and sister were killed. It was only by pure chance that Matthew even survived the attack after being saved by his brother. I could easily see how Matthew could be made to be a scapegoat in this case, and you can see how quickly people turn against him, just because he is different, and this made me feel really sorry for him. Mark Tilbury paints a clear picture of just how vulnerable he is.
Jim Bentley is a character who will get under your skin. Violence comes as second nature to him, and from the very first moment when Mark Tilbury introduces him to us, he made me feel uncomfortable. A lot of the time, Jim expresses anger and frustration, and his overriding need for drugs drives this. Jim is also willing to do anything to cover up his crimes. I really hated Jim as I was reading. Making his characters come to life is what Mark Tilbury does really well, and I wanted the police to get to the real truth as I was sure that Matthew wasn’t involved.
Mark Tilbury doesn’t shy away from violence, and there are some quite graphic scenes in this book, so this wouldn’t be for the faint-hearted. The opening chapter is really dramatic as well, which had me hooked very early on. There are some terrifying moments as well which had my eyes glued to the page as I wanted to find out what happened next. Every time I got to the end of a chapter, I had to read on to find out how things were going to pan out.
Throughout the book, I was never certain who was responsible for Jodie’s disappearance. I could also still never entirely be sure about Matthew, and this was what kept me turning the pages, I really wanted him to be innocent, but I also had to know the truth. Mark Tilbury creates nail-biting suspense in the final chapters of this book as the plot unravels.
This is the first book I have read by Mark Tilbury, and I am certain that it won’t be the last book I read by him. The Last One To See Her is a read which you won’t want to put down!
Publisher: Tilbury Publishing
Publication date: 4th June 2020
Print length: 266 pages
The Last One To See Her is available to buy:
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