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D.I. Tom Mariner Books In Order

Publication Order of D.I. Tom Mariner Books

The Worm in the Bud / Deadly Lies (2004) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Blood of the Innocents / Innocent Lies (2005) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Written in Blood / Killer Lies (2006) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Blood Money / Baby Lies (2007) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Stalked by Shadows / Married Lies (2009) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Blood and Stone / Buried Lies (2013) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Dead of Night / Missing Lies (2014) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Good Death (2016) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

D.I. Tom Mariner is the primary protagonist of a series of police procedurals named after him. The books follow Mariner around as he strives to overcome the challenges of doing his job and pursuing a healthy personal life.

+The Story
The D.I. Tom Mariner series takes place in Birmingham. The Birmingham that the author, Chris Collett, describes is a rich setting with a complicated history and an even more convoluted cultural landscape.

But Collett does not restrict the action of this series to the industrial center of Birmingham. She also throws the spotlight on Worcestershire and Warwickshire, the beautiful countryside that borders Birmingham.

Tom Mariner is a Detective Inspector that doesn’t really stand out when you first meet him. His actions in the field typically set him apart as an old-school sort of cop. He does what he can to stay within the confines of the law but Mariner will also bend and even break the rules if it means getting justice.

Readers first meet him in ‘Deadly Lies’, the first novel in the D.I. Tom Mariner series. A man, Eddie Barham, is found dead in his home. The journalist left a note by his side which has the police suspecting that he might have committed suicide.

But Mariner isn’t so certain. He saw Eddie before the tragic incident that took his life and he did not look like a man that wanted to abandon his mortal coil. Mariner has to take some unconventional steps to get to the bottom of the mystery.

The D.I. Tom Mariner novels are relatively conventional police procedurals. Each novel begins with a mystery of some sort, a murder that has been committed; a crime that has been perpetrated.

Mariner is called upon to make things right. He does this by collecting clues, interviewing witnesses, talking to experts, essentially taking steps that any other police detective in his shoes would take.

There is nothing extraordinary about Mariner’s investigative processes. While he definitely pays closer attention to detail, showing a noteworthy ability to put the pieces of complexes puzzles together, Mariner’s investigative gifts are not so extraordinary as to set him so far apart from his colleagues.

That being said, the personality that Chris Collett builds around her hero is a curious one. Mariner is a simple man. He saw a few difficult things as a younger man that skewed his perception of the world at large.

But for the most part, on the surface, Mariner is an average policeman. He owes his success as a detective to his dedication. Like most of his counterparts in the police procedural genre, Mariner doesn’t know how to let things go.

Once the detective catches the scent of a mystery, he won’t stop investigating it until he finds a satisfactory resolution. Even though his work presents many challenges, there is nothing in life that Tom Mariner would rather be doing.

He has a clear sense of right and wrong that directs every decision he makes in the field. On the personal front, Mariner isn’t complicated. He has no need for materialistic things, an attitude that has allowed him to steer clear of the corrupt tendencies that sometimes mire the police service.

Mariner’s modest outlook on life can be seen in the cottage that he calls his home. The detective drives a very old car and he is happiest when he is alone, drinking his beer, though he has shown an affinity for the game of dominoes.

That solitary aspect of his personality is a little off-putting to some readers who feel like they cannot truly warm up to him; Mariner isn’t necessarily friendless. He simply picks his company very carefully.

He also loves to wander in nature. Whenever a case begins to overwhelm him, Tom Mariner will go walking in the countryside. Sometimes he will walk for miles in terrible weather, armed with little more than a map and a compass, allowing the isolation and the silence to help him make sense of his problems.

+The Author
Chris Collett studied and graduated in Liverpool. A native of a Norfolk seaside town, she spent some time teaching children and adults with learning disabilities before landing a position as a lecturer in a University and eventually settling down to write her fiction.

Collett’s work with the disabled inspired her idea for the D.I. Tom Mariner series. Having worked with autistic individuals whose ailments varied considerably, she remembers wondering what would happen if a crime was committed and the only witness was a man with such acute autism that he couldn’t communicate.

That concept became ‘Deadly Lies’, the first D.I. Tom Mariner novel. In the beginning, all Collett had was a scene. And after she tried and failed to banish it, the author finally decided to write it down if only to exorcize it from her mind. Eventually, she found that she had even more scenes to add to that first one and, before long, a full-length novel took shape.

+Deadly Lies
Eddie Barham is dead. Everyone believes that the note he left behind proves that he killed himself. And D.I. Tom Mariner was ready to accept that conclusion. But then evidence emerged to disprove the theory.

Mariner had seen Eddie at a bar. At the time, he was soliciting the services of a prostitute. And to Mariner, Eddie hadn’t looked like a man who was ready to kill himself. The murder case is made more complicated when Eddie’s younger brother is found hiding in the house where Eddie died.

Jamie clearly saw the murder but he is autistic and can barely communicate. If Mariner wants to unravel the secrets Eddie was hiding, he must find a way to reach Jamie.

+Innocent Lies
Two teenagers have disappeared but the police only care about one. When a troubled boy goes missing, his mother reaches out to Mariner. Ricky had run away before but his mother believes that there is more to his disappearance this time than meets the eye.

But the police want Mariner to focus on Yasmin, a talented school girl from a family of devout Muslims. The police think that Yasmin might have been the victim of a hate crime.

However, Mariner knows that his superiors only care about the impact Yasmin’s case will have on their image. They have no interest in Ricky. Mariner must find a way to resolve Yasmin’s increasingly complicated case without abandoning Ricky.

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