Lightseekers by Femi Kayode

Lightseekers by Femi Kayode


When three young students are brutally murdered in a Nigerian university town, their killings – and their killers – are caught on social media. The world knows who murdered them; what no one knows is why.

As the legal trial begins, investigative psychologist Philip Taiwo is contacted by the father of one of the boys, desperate for some answers to his son’s murder. But Philip is an expert in crowd behaviour and violence, not a detective, and after travelling to the sleepy university town that bore witness to the killings, he soon feels dramatically out of his depth.

Will he finally be able to uncover the truth of what happened to the Okiri Three?

My Review:

The start of a new thriller series that stars investigative psychologist Dr Philip Taiwo. Lightseekers (Raven Books) is the gripping debut novel by Femi Kayode that is set in Nigeria. Dr Taiwo has been living and studying in the United States and has returned to Lagos. His country has changed since the time he has been away and Folake, his wife wanted to return to her home with their children. The United States was not for her. On their return to Lagos, he is asked to investigate the death of a young man, one of three that were brutally murdered by a gang. As Philip Taiwo specialises in mob violence and killings, he accepts the case.

The killings were captured on mobile phones and shared across social media platforms. Seven people are now standing trial for the killings of the three university students. But why where they so brutally killed? Now Philip Taiwo must find the answers and quickly. Taiwo may be back in his home country but things have changed, and he is a stranger. Chika Makuochi has now become his driver and he is wise and Taiwo needs him to guide him around they become quite a partnership as Taiwo seeks answers. The story really shifts at a pace and there are more than a few difficult situations that Philip Taiwo and Chika find themselves in.

There are many in the local community that eye Taiwo with suspicion and seem unwilling to help with answers, danger seems to lurk around every corner. But Taiwo is undaunted and pursues the case. He wants the truth, despite having to deal with some corrupt officials and historical tensions but Taiwo despite the danger is determined to get to the truth.

A brilliant and tension filled thriller, that sees the role of social media in our modern-day world that can sow hatred in a heartbeat. A complex but superb character driven debut novel. I am already looking forward to the next instalment staring investigative psychologist Dr Philip Taiwo.

You can follow Femi Kayode on Twitter: @FemiKayode_Author


432 Pages.

Thank you Laura Meyer and Raven Books for the review copy of  Lightseekers by Femi Kayode.

Lightseekers by Femi Kayode was published by Raven Books published on 4th February 2021 and is available to order through Waterstones, Amazon and through your local independent bookshop or through that supports your local independent bookshop. UK

The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton

The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton


An impossible murder
A remarkable detective duo
A demon who may or may not exist

It’s 1634 and Samuel Pipps, the world’s greatest detective, is being transported from the Dutch East Indies to Amsterdam, where he is facing trial and execution for a crime he may, or may not, have committed. Travelling with him is his loyal bodyguard, Arent Hayes, who is determined to prove his friend innocent, while also on board are Sara Wessel, a noble woman with a secret, and her husband, the governor general of Batavia.

But no sooner is their ship out to sea than devilry begins to blight the voyage. A strange symbol appears on the sail. A dead leper stalks the decks. Livestock are slaughtered in the night. And then the passengers hear a terrible voice whispering to them in the darkness, promising them three unholy miracles. First: an impossible pursuit. Second: an impossible theft. Third: an impossible murder. Could a demon be responsible for their misfortunes?

With Pipps imprisoned, only Arent and Sara can solve a mystery that stretches back into their past and now threatens to sink the ship, killing everybody on board.

My Review:

The Devil and the Dark Water (Raven Books) by Stuart Turton is a fantastic historical adventure on the high seas with so many twists and turns and more than just interesting characters that makes Turton’s second novel one not to miss if you enjoyed his first.

Set in 1634 and the renowned detective Samuel Pipps is on-board a ship that has set sail from the Dutch East Indies but he is not investigating a crime more a case that he himself is under arrest. The ship is bound for Amsterdam where Pipps will stand trial and he may even face execution if found guilty. Determined to prove his innocence is his bodyguard Arent Hayes.

The Saaradam is carrying cargo and also some interesting passengers among them Sara Wessel and her husband who just happens to be the governor general of Batavia from where they are sailing from. But there is another passenger aboard the ship. The gruelling journey will take approximately eight months to reach Amsterdam. Even before the ship has sailed a leper warns the passengers and crew that a demon by the name of Old Tom is already on-board ship and their fate is sealed. The leper then meets a grizzly end.

The ship sets sail and things do not go smoothly as the crew and passengers begin to wonder what is going to happen as murder and fate awaits. There is of course one passenger who may yet be of help but he is locked up in the deep in the ship. As a ferocious storm approaches there is whispers of another ship stalking them in the distance, could this be the ghost ship that was mentioned?

There are supernatural overtones within the plot as well as secrets, intrigue and murder. Turton has weaved together a gripping mystery novel along with many characters on the Saaradam that have no-where to run or escape ‘Old Tom’ but for some only death awaits.

The book runs close to 600 pages so this is heavy book but superbly written with historical references. A rollicking good read, and if you enjoy a mystery novel set on the high seas and will be in many reader’s selections of best fiction of the year.

576 Pages.

The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton is published by Raven Books and was published on 1st October 2020 and is available through Waterstones, Amazon and through your local independent bookshop or through that supports your local independent bookshop. UK