Bitter Edge

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 25 Feb 2019

Member Reviews

When a local girl jumps to her death from a cliff, everyone is convinced that it is a tragic and horrific suicide. But when the investigation leads back to the girl’s school, it becomes clear that all is not well in the picturesque, rural community. Accusations have been made about a popular teacher, there is a pattern of troubled teens, and within days a schoolgirl has gone missing. With unsavoury characters lurking in the background, it is clear that there is a dark reality behind the quiet cosiness of life in the Lakes…
I was delighted to get to grips with another DI Kelly Porter novel, having previously reviewed the first – Dark Game – and third – Dead End (I somehow managed to miss the second novel, Deep Fear). Kelly Porter is my kind of lead character; she is headstrong, determined and relentless in her pursuit of the truth and of justice. She is hard-working and effective, and at this stage, she feels more like a friend than a character! I highly enjoy the way Rachel Lynch writes these books, as the detail of the procedural part of police work is something that fascinates me. Seeing the steps a detective would take to solve numerous cases at once is very engaging and kept me willing Kelly on.
Rachel Lynch’s talent has never been in doubt, but for me, this is the best book of hers that I have read. It deals with some very difficult topics, including suicide, drug abuse and child abduction, but never strays into being gratuitous or goes too far. I’ve mentioned it before while reviewing her novels, but her ability to weave together seemingly separate plotlines into a satisfying, believable narrative is incredible. As the majority of central characters are exposed fairly early on in her books, I’m always trying to fit events together to get ‘the answer’, but her writing keeps me on the edge of my seat continuously (also I’m always wrong). This book also felt like it had a few more twists than the previous two I’d read, which I really enjoyed. While this is a standalone novel, I would recommend starting with at least the first book, Dark Game, in order to fully understand some of the characters and their motives in Bitter Edge.
It felt almost reassuring to settle back into the Cumbrian surroundings. Rachel Lynch is clearly very familiar with the place, and the way she describes the location is inviting and appealing. This choice of charming, pleasant scenery makes the perfect juxtaposition to the brutality and harshness of the crimes that take place there. It is much more shocking to read about such events in such a beautiful location, which is a fantastic USP for this series. 
This book is oftentimes bleak and full of despair, but it balances out the heaviness of some of the topics with the inclusion of plotlines around Kelly’s personal relationships. Kelly’s relationship with her parents is a central point in this book, alongside her relationship with her partner Johnny and his daughter Josie. I really loved this – it brought levity to the novel and allowed me to catch my breath a bit, as well as explaining a huge amount of what has shaped Kelly’s character. The only thing I missed was that her sister, Nikki, who had been such a central inclusion in previous novels, was barely mentioned in this one. I’m hoping there is more to come between these siblings, particularly in light of the shape of their family by the end of the book.
Overall, I loved Bitter Edge. It is sometimes bleak in topics covered, but it is highly engaging, completely gripping, very well written and exciting to read. This is a tangle of plotlines you’ll be delighted to get lost in!
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The first time I have come across this detective series -  I will definitely be looking out for the earlier ones. I really enjoyed this, despite its bleak look at the downside of being a teenager. It's very believable and up to date as far as that element is concerned, while the mystery element was full of enough hooks and twist and turns to keep me reading!
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Another cracking read from Rachel Lynch. I enjoyed the personal aspects to Kelly alongside the case. The case itself was gripping, per usual, and I couldn't stop reading. I actually devoured this one in an evening as I was so drawn in. Can't wait for the next one!
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Bitter Edge is the 4th installment in the Kelly Porter series, set in Lake District, UK. The main plot is quite dark, with themes of adolescent drug use, bullying and sexual assault taking the centre stage. Running parallel to this is also Kelly’s personal narrative, which brings some very needed cheer.

A clever mystery with several twists and turns. I found the novel initially difficult to grab hold of as it is all over the place. Slow start but clever intertwining of threads in the end.
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Another terrific Lynch novel. DI Kelly Porter is certainly a crime fic fan favourite!

DI Kelly Porter is back, but so is an old foe and this time he won’t back down...
When a teenage girl flings herself off a cliff in pursuit of a gruesome death, DI Kelly Porter is left asking why. Ruled a suicide, there’s no official reason for Kelly to chase answers, but as several of her team’s cases converge on the girl’s school, a new, darker story emerges. One which will bring Kelly face-to-face with an old foe determined to take back what is rightfully his – no matter the cost.

Mired in her pursuit of justice for the growing list of victims, Kelly finds security in Johnny, h
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I found this book very slow going and hard to pick up. In fact I’m afraid to say I didn’t finish it. This is the first book this year that I haven’t finished but I just couldn’t struggle through it anymore. It was overly descriptive and just too slow.
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This is the fourth title in a series of novels centred on DI Kelly Porter and based in the Lake District, the northern lakes in particular. Bitter Edge begins with the traumatic death of a young girl and Kelly Porter's team is responsible for discovering just what happened to her. When a young girl from the same school goes missing the team must try and find her before it’s too late. Are  these two cases connected? Is there any connection to two previous suicides at the school? And how is this all connected to a case from Kelly’s past? The plot is well paced and hooks the reader in as the different strands are twisted together and the story moves towards a satisfying conclusion. Having not read any of the previous books this did not spoil the plot as a standalone story although the reader would obviously benefit from having read the previous books in order to get the most out of the developing personal elements. I would definitely recommend Bitter Edge to anyone who enjoys crime fiction.
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This book caught me by complete surprise. This is a crime thriller novel that starts off with a punch. You witness a young girl killing herself by running off a cliff deliberately. From there, you jump around perspectives to police and other characters as you get thrust into a confusing narrative. I continually found myself questioning what on earth is going on and also how can this all possibly be linked?

I found the multiple perspectives incredibly confusing. I've been known to knock stars off ratings of books for this in the past, except this book does an incredible job of suddenly making all the different plot threads fit. Suddenly I understood who everyone was, and how things may start linking together. I was blown away with how intricately this was all achieved.

I loved that the crime novel wasn't just heavy on the procedural side of things. The reader also gets in incite into Kelly Porters life, which is what helped get this book to five stars for me. I loved how her life was intertwined with the story, and that I actually cared just as much about her personal life as I did with solving the crimes. This is particularly impressive because this is the first book I've read from the series, and this is the fourth one. I have every intention of trying to read the rest of the series ASAP, as if all the other books are even half as good as this one ending up being, then I am in for a treat.

I highly recommend this book for anyone who loves thrillers, and those who will dabble in crime books, but which enjoy a good side plot.
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Thanks to Canelo and NetGalley for an ARC in return for an unbiased review.
First things, first, I'm a big fan of Ms Lynch and the character she has created in these publications.
Now onto the fourth in the series of books, there is no sign of any let up in terms of quality.
Every one as good as the previous and looking forward to book five.
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This book is full of mystery and is a whodunit from the beginning.  It kept me hooked and turning the pages.  The characters are believable and we'll written.  I had not read the previous books but still enjoyed this book in its own right.
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Book number 4 in the DI Kelly Porter series.  If you’ve read the previous books you’ll love this.  I would recommend reading them in order to fully understand them although they can be read as standalone. I love the beautiful setting of the series, Rachel’s description of the lakes and mountains makes me want to travel there.  I don’t want to give anything away but this one is a litter darker than the others but definitely didn’t put me off.  Great stuff as usual.
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absolutely loved this book. I love how all the side stories and characters tied into it.

not only did you have a case to investigate but Kelly was also showing us her personal worries and family problems and it was wonderful to read.

author has hooked me on these books
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Set in my favourite place- the Lake District- with a strong female detective and a bunch of deaths and inter relationships this ticks all the boxes. It doesn't fail to thrill. Got to read the rest now!
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Although this has a lot of characters which at times made the story difficult to follow, it slowly pulled me in and by the end I did not want it to finish.
All the characters were so well developed and the background of the Lake District made it refreshingly different.
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Bitter Edge is the 4th book featuring DI Kelly Porter and while i was a bit apprehensive to start reading so far into an established series I really needn't have been.


There were mentions of previous storylines but they didn't seem to overwhelm the current story and they were vague enough to still leave me wanting to catch up on previous books without having the whole storylines completely spoiled.


This story centres around a series of teenage suicides which seem to have been written off by local police. The storyline is at times heart breaking and that is down to Abbott's great characterisation throughout the book. The central character of DI Porter is extremely likeable, even though she isn't a people pleaser, and you can't help but find yourself rooting for her to find peace and happiness in her private life.


The descriptions of the Lake District were brilliant, and brought the place vividly to life. I am delighted to have discovered this series and I look forward to catching up with previous DI kelly Porter storylines.


Thank you Netgalley for sending me a copy of this book to review.
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The fourth DI Kelly Porter novel and another fantastic story. 
When a teenage athlete commits suicide, DI Porter has to solve the case of why a popular girl kills herself for no apparent reason. But when another teenage girl goes missing, and she discovers 2 recent suicides of other students, it become clear someone is lying. 
Kelly soon discovers a web of drug taking and bullying, with the relationships and misplaced loyalty wrecking havoc on the school.
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I haven't read the previous books in this series but this one is a police  procedural, crime thriller. A D.Is' instincts has her being suspicious of the supposed suicide of a teenager.  There are lots of themes in the story which is a challenging read.
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A shocking tale of suicide, drugs and very unsavoury characters.   It is all the more shocking given the beauty of the location, the Lake District is somewhere I have always thought of as peaceful but there is even danger in the landscape.  DI Kelly Porter previously worked for the Met and is well equipped for the task of unraveling the various crimes that have surfaced in her new domain.  A thought provoking book.
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My first book by this author and I really enjoyed it  A  crime novel with lots of interesting characters Set in the lake district a perfect winter setting for this interesting and page turning book loved it
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Rachel Lynch is slowly working her way up my list of favorite authors. This is the 4th book in the Kelly Porter series, the 4th one I've read, and the 4th one I've reviewed! I'll link to the others either during or after my review.

Once again, several seemingly separate strands are woven together, forming one fantastically written story. Bitter Edge opens with Kelly living in her new home, her relationship with Johnny from Mountain rescue progressing well (even with the addition of his teenage daughter), her sister has taken a back seat despite all her issues, and Kelly's mother is desperately ill but doing her best to hide it. Certain revelations were made at the end of the last book, Dead End, which Kelly is still unsure how to deal with. As it involves someone she works with she's finding it harder than usual to keep her personal and work relationships separate.

The story starts with a teenage runner committing suicide, Kelly is not convinced and wants it to be murder but the postmortem conclusively proves it was suicide. There's also a situation with a teacher at the dead girl's former school, another missing pupil whose friends may or may not be more involved than they're willing to admit to, and the unwelcome reappearance of a character from a previous story.

As always, the spectre of the Lakes is always hanging over everything and everyone, it may be a delightful place in summer and a fabulous place to visit, but it has its dark side as Kelly and her team know all too well. The fact that it's Christmas and it's snowing adds to the urgency to find the missing girl, time is really running short and it's up to the team at Eden House to solve the all the strands of this once simple case. Thanks to DI Porter's tenacity she doesn't give up on the fact there were also two other suicides at the Derwent Academy and pushes hard to uncover just exactly is going on with the teenagers involved in the case of missing Faith, the connection to the teacher currently suspended and under investigation for child pornography, the kidnapping of a toddler, and the return of a very unpleasant chap who everyone thought had disappeared for good.

Bitter Edge makes excellent use of the very current cyber-bullying of young people and the pressure to conform thanks to sites like Snapchat, Instagram and Facebook. It's more hard-hitting than the previous books but no less readable. In fact, it was harder to put down than my previous favorite in the series, Deep End, and I was absorbed from start to finish. I had no clue how things tied together until an extremely large hint was dropped and from then on it was so easy to see how it worked. Well done to Rachel for writing another fabulous page-turner and I'm now sitting here (im)patiently waiting for the next installment!!!
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