Blog Tour: Dead End

So today is a super exciting day. I am, as you probably know if you hang round these parts on a regular basis, a lover of a good thriller and a lover of a good police procedural and a lover of a good story. I have a lot of love. With all that in mind, it took me approx.. 0.25 seconds to say that YES, I absolutely did want to share an extract of Rachel Lynch’s new novel Dead End with you all.

Dead End is the third of Rachel’s books to feature Kelly Porter, but trust me when I say you don’t have to have read the other two to enjoy this; it works perfectly well as a standalone. I hadn’t read either of the other two and I still loved this. I loved it in part because it’s set in The Lake District which is sort of local to me and a place I love a lot and also because it ticked all the above boxes – it’s twisty and turny with a story that really hooks you from the get go and characters you find yourself drawn to, there’s a bit of a romance which I’m always a sucker for – it’s nice here because it’s nice to see Kelly outside of the investigation; I really loved the stuff with her family, and Johnny – the guy she’s seeing and the whole things moves forward at a satisfying pace doing the thing thrillers do when their done well  - sending you in one direction only to laugh in your face when you get there and send you somewhere else.

ANYHOW. This is not supposed to be a review, it’s supposed to be the sharing of an extract so you can see for yourself, so here, have some Kelly/Johnny goodness and then go and buy a copy of this book for yourself.



Chapter 2

Kelly jumped from the top of Kailpot Crag into the freezing water below and screamed. She didn’t reckon there was anyone else on the planet who would dare push her over the edge, and as she emerged from the lake below, she squealed at Johnny in mock horror. He laughed out loud and jumped in after her, making his body into a bomb. She wasn’t offended when he pretended to be laddish, because she saw straight through it. It was a relief to be with someone who expected nothing from her apart from what they already got.
The water would have stopped the heart of someone from a warmer climate, but for Kelly and Johnny, it was luxuriously refreshing. They were alone, because it was May, and too cold for tourists to venture here. But the cold bothered neither of them because they knew that this was the best time to visit; when they both needed to cool off after equally taxing days.
They swam towards the middle of the lake, and Johnny caught Kelly’s leg. She wriggled and they both went under the surface. The cold stung her eyes as she searched underwater for him. He’d swum beneath her and grabbed her leg once more. They broke the surface and caught their breath. The water was a deep turquoise, and they could see fifteen feet below them. Kelly was a confident swimmer in the Lakes, but not in open water: she hated swimming in the sea. Here, only the odd ugly pike lurked beneath, and the experience didn’t leave a sticky residue of salt and sand.
They swam out further and got used to the temperature. The tensions of the day melted away and Kelly felt free.
‘Race!’ Johnny shouted. She was as competitive as he, and he knew she’d take the bait.
‘Where to?’ she asked, treading water. She was used to the cold now, though she could feel her body was covered in goose bumps.
‘Back to the beach,’ he called. They were about a hundred metres away from the shore, and Kelly wondered if they might spot a steamer puffing around the bend, to the left or right of them. But there was no sound.
‘Go!’ she shouted, and dived beneath the surface. She knew Johnny would grin broadly as he held his breath and took his first stroke. But he’d still win.
He pounded the water back to the shore, coming up only every six strokes for air. Kelly had to take a breath every four. She could feel his body pushing through the water only feet away from her and knew he was overtaking her. She pushed harder. By the time they were in less than three feet of water, he was close enough for her to grab his shorts and pull them down. He stopped and clutched at them, but it was too late; Kelly swam past him and was officially the winner.
She strode out of the water, pulling her hair back and wringing it out over her shoulder. Laughing to herself, she turned round to watch Johnny pulling his pants back up. He grinned and came towards her. She expected a kiss, but at the last moment he slapped her firmly on her backside. Technically that was a victory too; he knew she hated it. Well, she pretended to. The first time he’d done it, on a run around the lake, she’d gone to berate him, delivering the full extent of her indignation, but he’d smiled and defused her mood without saying a single word.
They were both short of breath, and sat down on their towels on the tiny shingle beach. It was the type of place you saw in a magazine, empty, hidden and private; but come summer, it would be rammed, noisy and annoying.
‘So, was it broken?’ Kelly asked as she pulled a sweater over her bikini and lay down on her side, propped up on an elbow. A light breeze began to stir the trees, and they moved from side to side, like elders nodding their consent. Johnny rubbed himself roughly with his towel; goose bumps covered his body. Kelly watched him. Maybe it was time to get dressed after all.
‘Yes, in three places. It was pretty bad,’ Johnny said. He was talking about a woman he’d brought off the mountain this morning, who’d fallen down a gully on St Sunday Crag. Luckily her boyfriend’s mobile phone had a signal, and the helicopter had managed to get Johnny up close enough to reach her within two hours. She was now tucked up in the Penrith and Lakes Hospital, awaiting complicated surgery. ‘It must have hurt like hell,’ he added. For Johnny to say that, it must have been bad.
Kelly’s day hadn’t been anywhere near as exciting, but it had been challenging nonetheless. Her superior at HQ, DCI Eddie Cane, was doing his best to get her to commit to a desk there, pen-pushing reviews and cold cases. Technically it was her next step – a promotion, and an honour indeed, but not one that Kelly wanted bestowed upon her. Reappraising cases and crunching paperwork at HQ had never been her intention; she was an operational officer, made for the outdoors, and she couldn’t desert her team, not now.
And if you wanted a little bit more information about the book, well, HERE IT IS:

Title: Dead End

Author Name: Rachel Lynch

Previous Books (if applicable): Dark Game and Deep Fear

Genre: Crime Fiction, Police Procedural

Release Date: 8th October 2018

Publisher: Canelo

Book Blurb:
When the seventh Earl of Lowesdale is found hanging from the rafters at Wasdale Hall, everyone assumes the aging, hard-partying aristocrat had finally had enough of chasing the glory of his youth. But when the coroner finds signs of foul play, DI Kelly Porter is swept into a luxurious world where secrets and lies dominate.
At the same time, two young hikers go missing and it’s up to Kelly to lead the search. But digging deeper reveals ties to two other unsolved disappearances and Kelly and her team find themselves in a race against time.
Now, as all roads of both investigations and Kelly’s own family secrets lead to Wasdale Hall it becomes more important than ever for Kelly to discover the devious truths hidden behind the walls of the Lake District’s most exclusive estate...
Don't miss this gripping crime thriller featuring an unforgettable detective. Perfect for fans of Angela Marsons, Patricia Gibney and Robert Bryndza.

Links to Book:
Author Bio: Rachel Lynch grew up in Cumbria and the lakes and fells are never far away from her. London pulled her away to teach History and marry an Army Officer, whom she followed around the globe for thirteen years. A change of career after children led to personal training and sports therapy, but writing was always the overwhelming force driving the future. The human capacity for compassion as well as its descent into the brutal and murky world of crime are fundamental to her work.