Joy Ellis' first Nikki Galena book was published in 2010, and NetGalley has been releasing them for the last year here in the States. This series has become one of my favorites, and with each NetGalley release, I have indulged in the world Ellis has created in the fens and in the characters of Nikki and her faithful team, reading and reviewing with genuine pleasure.
Stalker in the Fens, the fifth book in the series, continues the crime-fighting adventures of DI Nikki Galena and DS Joseph Easter. Each book works as a stand-alone, so don't worry if you don't begin with the first book. It is nice to see the development from book to book, but Ellis is skillful at developing each plot and set of characters--although there are occasional references to previous characters and events, each plot is self-contained.
Nikki's friend Helen is severely injured in a dreadful accident. While she is trapped in a cellar and in and out of consciousness, someone speaks to her. A man is also trapped and injured. At first, his voice is comforting, but then he says something that shocks her.
When Helen is discovered and rescued, her injuries are such that she remembers very little about her experience. A year later, however, she begins having flashbacks; she remembers the man and what he told her. The thing is--there was no one else in the cellar when Helen was found.
About the same time that Helen has begun remembering some of the events surrounding her injury, she feels she is being watched.
Nikki and Joseph take her fear seriously, but are not certain whether her flashbacks and feeling of being stalked are real or part of post-traumatic stress.
Another complex plot with well-developed characters. Ellis can't write fast enough for me--I want the next one.
Crime/Police Procedural. Oct. 18, 2016. Print length: 311 pages.