Title: Divine Poison by AB Morgan
Publisher: Bloodhound Books
Date Published: 4th January 2018
For a community psychiatric nurse, Monica Morris has an unhealthy interest in poison, and when, on impulse, she buys an antique Ship’s Doctor’s Cabinet with a set of leather bound journals she becomes fascinated by the content.
A few days later, she discovers the body of her patient, Jan Collins, and although police assume suicide by overdose, Monica is not convinced.
When more unexplained deaths involving poisoning occur, Monica realises they are linked and so does DS Adams who is investigating. But how are they connected? And why?
When it becomes obvious that she’s unwittingly stepped into a trap set for someone else, Monica’s career, her own sanity and her life are placed at risk. But where can she turn to for help?
I want to thank Bloodhound Books for the ARC copy of this book and Sarah Hardy for organising the blog tour.
The story opens with Monica Morris, a community nurse finding one of her patients dead from apparent suicide. She suspecting it could be poisoning, she has an obsession with poisons and poisoners, but can’t prove it. She finds herself drawn into a deadly mystery, putting her life on the line to solve it.
I haven’t read the first book A Justifiable Madness featuring Monica Morris but I don’t think it really matters as this works well as a standalone.
This story was full of intrigue and mystery that kept me turning page after page.
I really liked the character of Monica, with her poorly timed jokes and the fact if she’s talking to someone with an accent she tends to try and speak in that accent (we’ve all done it I’m sure!), made her very likeable. The only thing that annoyed me about her was her attitude towards counselling as ‘rubbish’, which for a mental health nurse I found a little strange.
But goodness me this book had me a little emotional at times! Especially hearing the account from one her patients, Ben. Abused as a child by a Catholic priest, his parents didn’t believe him, which made him depressed, paranoid and turning to alcohol. It’s a shame this is probably quite an accurate tale.
I did feel however that the plot got a little sloppy in the middle, and I lost track of it a bit. Also I found it hard to keep up with the medicines/medical jargon.
But overall a good mystery with plenty of murder and mayhem.
Alison Morgan started writing a couple of years ago to address that niggling question: could she write a book? The answer was a simple yes. She’s had to retire from the NHS a little earlier than planned, but has discovered a new passion. Writing. Her debut novel, A Justifiable Madness, was published by Bloodhound Books in September 2017 attracting great reviews for its refreshing premise and dark humour. With two further novels being published at the beginning of 2018, it seems Alison has a promising future as an author. Divine Poison is the second novel to feature Monica Morris, a mental health nurse, as the main protagonist in this crime mystery, but there are no plans for a series. Alison’s third suspense novel, The Camera Lies, steps away from the field of nursing and into the world of real crime documentary films.
Alison lives with her husband Andy and their dog Sadie, in a small village north of Bedford. She’s not the type to let life get in the way of adventure and so, always up for the next challenge, she decided to have a proper midlife crisis and learn to ride a motorbike. In August she passed, first time. Her husband was impressed until she swung her leg over his prized Triumph and roared off with a big grin on her face. ‘Research for the next book,’ she cried. The fourth book is under construction and does indeed feature motorbikes.
Alison Morgan: writes under the name AB Morgan