Indiscretions by Barbara WinkesIndiscretions by Barbara Winkes is the first in the Carpenter/Harding police procedural series.

Ellie Harding is a police officer with her heart set on becoming a detective. When she is brutally attacked on her way home from after work drinks one night, her life changes and suddenly Ellie decides to take from life as much as she can.

Jordan Carpenter is a Detective engrossed in a serial killer case, with a long term relationship dying faster than the next victim. Ellie Harding has caught Jordan’s eye on more than one occasion, and when she requests Harding be added to the Taskforce for her latest case, Jordan knows she is flirting with disaster. And with Ellie.

As things between Ellie and Jordan heat up, so does the investigation, and the killer is closer than either of them think. Can the two of them put their budding relationship aside long enough to capture the killer and save the latest victim, or perhaps their feelings for each other help solve the case?

The Characters

I loved both of the main characters so much. Both are complex and flawed, and from the start I rooted for them both, professionally and personally. Ellie is sweet and determined, and caught in the rapturous throes of the initial obsession a new relationship can bring. She is smart, and almost immediately in tune with Jordan, I got the sense that Ellie loves unabashedly and with the same fervor she applies to the rest of her life.

Jordan is really complex, and it is clear that Barbara Winkes has written this book with a series in mind. Small glimpses of Jordan’s history just add to her mysterious persona, and I cannot wait to read more so I can learn more about her. I felt a kind of sympathy for Jordan, who I felt was more vulnerable than her professional standing would let on, and who is clearly caught in a long term relationship where love and respect are badly eroded.

The Writing Style

This is the first book I have read in a long time where I could actually feel myself sitting up straighter, holding my breath, and my pulse quicken, and I loved it. The suspense (even though I had a pretty good idea who the killer was, and what the end result was likely to be) was out of control and I genuinely couldn’t put this book down. At 3.47am, I finished what I had started a mere 5 hours before, and I have no regrets. Great pacing, great characters, great suspense. An all-round terrific book.

The Pros

The chemistry between the two leads was electric. The way that Winkes made me forget some of the things that would usually turn me off this story line was masterful, and I thoroughly enjoyed both the romantic and the suspense aspects of this book.

The Cons

So this book is another one about violence against women, with the addition of a cheating story line and a dab of hate crime in there. But, as someone who doesn’t do cheating story lines, I have to say this is one that didn’t actually bother me. If that is not something you usually read, I challenge you to read the first few chapters of this book and see what you think. Like me, you might be surprised by how little that part of the story actually matters in the end.

erins favourite booksThe Conclusion

As a new reader of Barbara Winkes work, I wonder to myself “How on earth did I not know these books existed?!” The main characters are deliciously complicated, yet likeable, and the way the story is written around them is truly special. Indiscretions is the kind of book that makes you want to leave a light on in the hallway when you go to bed, and Winkes has started something special with Harding and Carpenter. I highly recommend this book, and will be off to purchase the next in the series as soon as I recover from my late night reading this one!

Excerpt from Indiscretions by Barbara Winkes

“Officer Harding.”

She spun around to see Detective Carpenter had walked up behind her, ready to leave as well. “Detective,” she murmured, not in the mood for small talk after today’s disappointment.

“How was your first day back?”

Ellie was pretty sure making conversation wasn’t the plan here. She was conflicted. Part of her wanted to make sure both Carpenter and Bristol knew she didn’t consider their decision as fair. Another part remembered how Jordan had shown interest back then, at the bar. Ellie needed something flattering, something to tell her life would go on, but the question was, should she take it from someone who was in a committed relationship, more or less? Ellie didn’t know if it was more or less, but she had heard talk about the detective.

She shrugged. “Same old. I’d been hoping for something different to brush up my resume, but obviously, it didn’t happen.”

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Series

Carpenter/Harding series 

Indiscretions

Insinuations

Incisions

Intrusions

Initiations

Intentions

Barbara Winkes Online

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A Matter of Blood by Catherine Maoirisi

 

 

 

 

 

 

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