The Girls on Chalk Hill by Alison Belsham

The Girls on Chalk Hill

Posted on June 30, 2023 by Nadene @ Totally Addicted to Reading in Reviews / 6 Comments

The Girls on Chalk Hill is the first book in the Detective Lexi Bennett series. It’s also my first time reading the author’s work. Intrigued by the blurb, I quickly signed up for a review copy. Suspense and a well-executed mystery await readers of police procedurals. 

 

The Girls on Chalk Hill by Alison BelshamTitle: The Girls on Chalk Hill
Author(s): Alison Belsham
Series: Detective Lexi Bennett #1
Also in this series: The Girl’s Last Cry , The Innocent Angels
Published by Bookouture on June 26, 2023
Pages: 419
Genre(s): Mystery, Suspense
Source: Publisher
Format: eArc
Goodreads
Purchase: Amazon
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star
Series Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

They lie on the hillside, wearing matching white dresses, tiaras in their blonde hair. Each of them clutches a red rose. They could be sleeping, but frost shines on the lashes of their wide blue eyes, frozen open forever…
Detective Lexi Bennett is devastated when she finds the two teenagers lying side by side on the quiet green hillside, their throats cut. Convinced this is no ordinary killer, she vows to draw on all her profiling experience to find justice for these beautiful girls who will never have the chance to grow up.
But when the victims are identified as Lucy and Eden Carter, Lexi’s blood turns cold. The sisters were triplets – and the third girl, Paige , is missing. The case suddenly feels frighteningly personal. Lexi was a triplet too, and she and her sisters were abducted as teens. Two of them escaped but Lexi’s dreams are still haunted by memories of the faceless man who took them, and her sister Rose , who she never saw again.
Her boss thinks she’s too close to the case, but Lexi is sure the monster who took her is back with a message. She throws herself into the investigation, hunting down every clue, certain that time is running out to save Paige.
Then she returns home to find the back door open and Rose’s diary on the kitchen table. As she traces her beloved sister’s handwriting, her heart breaking, Lexi swears she will not rest until this brutal monster is caught. Will the diary help her find him before Paige is killed? Or is she walking into a trap designed just for her?

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

This post contains affiliate links you can use to purchase the book. If you buy the book using that link, I will receive a small commission from the sale.

 

The story focuses on Detective Inspector Lexie Bennett and her quest to stop a deranged killer. After her time working with the FBI, Lexie returns home to take up the post as head of Canterbury’s Major Investigation Team. Imagine taking an early morning run and stumbling on the bodies of two teenaged girls with their throats cut. That’s Lexie’s experience on the morning of her first day working with the task force. Further investigation revealed they were two sisters of a set of triplets and the third sister was missing.

This revelation stirred up painful memories for Lexie as she, too, was one part of a set of triplets. Seventeen years ago, she and her sisters were abducted, but only two survived the ordeal. That experience, along with not knowing what happened to her other sister, haunted her, and she blocked everything from that painful time. Now with her past crashing into her present she has no choice but to relive that terrible night if she hopes to find Paige, the missing sister, before it’s too late….and get justice not only for her sister, Rose but also for the girls found on Chalk Hill. 

I thought this was a great start to the series. From the first page, I was completely hooked. Now this investigation would take everything out of Lexie because of her personal connection to the case. So much so she made a few unwise decisions. Her determination combined with her desire for the truth made an excellent detective. However, there were moments when her actions rubbed me the wrong way.

Many suspects came on the team’s radar, which made their job a challenge, especially giving the limited time frame they were working with. I loved the villain’s POV. With his POV, readers are aware of his motives and know his moves. Knowledge of his identity, however, remained a mystery to almost the end of the story. This is one of those mysteries where readers and the detective discover the truth at the same time. It would seem he was always one step ahead. He was definitely playing a game of cat and mouse with the police.

The tension intensified with each page turn. It kept me on edge as I wondered and hope Lexie will Paige before it’s too late. This addictive and captivating story will have readers turning the pages to learn what happens.

Overall, The Girls on Chalk Hill delivered an interesting story which fans of police procedurals will want to add to their reading list.

 

Story Evaluation
Plot
4
Characters
4.5
World Building
4.5
Writing Style
4
Pacing
4
Cover
3
Enjoyment
4
Ending
4
Overall: One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

 

 

 

About Alison Belsham

In 2016, I entered and won Bloody Scotland’s Pitch Perfect competition. This secured me an agent and a three-book publishing deal with Orion for my police procedural series set in the world of tattoos and tattooing. My first novel, The Tattoo Thief, was translated into 15 languages, was a No 1 bestseller in Italy and is the first instalment of the internationally acclaimed Tattoo Thief trilogy. I also write in collaboration with my brother Nick Higgins – Canelo has published our action thriller series set in Afghanistan, Death In Kabul and Death in Helmand. Now I’m embarking on a fresh crime series with Bookouture. It’s set in Canterbury, featuring DI Lexi Bennett, newly appointed to lead the Major Incident Team after a spell working with the FBI’s specialist serial killer unit. I divide my time between London and Edinburgh, where I am a co-founder of the Edinburgh Writers’ Forum, providing professional development and networking for writers.

 

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6 responses to “The Girls on Chalk Hill by Alison Belsham

  1. I like these kinds of books that hunt for some sort of killer be it serial killers, psychotic killer, psychological killer. This sounds like a good one, thanks for letting us know about it.

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  2. This does sound like a good one! I love a good suspense/mystery and Lexi sounds like a character I would really like. Here’s hoping my library orders a copy. 😀

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