Title: Perfect Remains (Luc Callanach #1)
Author: Helen Fields
Narrator: Robert Laing
Length: 12 hrs and 33 mins
Date of publication: 2019
Format: Unabridged audiobook
Favourite audiobook alert! 5 ⭐️
On a remote Highland mountain, the body of Elaine Buxton is burning. All that will be left to identify the respected lawyer are her teeth and a fragment of clothing.
In the concealed back room of a house in Edinburgh, the real Elaine Buxton screams into the darkness….
Detective Inspector Luc Callanach has barely set foot in his new office when Elaine’s missing persons case is escalated to a murder investigation. Having left behind a promising career at Interpol, he’s eager to prove himself to his new team. But Edinburgh, he discovers, is a long way from Lyon, and Elaine’s killer has covered his tracks with meticulous care.
It’s not long before another successful woman is abducted from her doorstep, and Callanach finds himself in a race against the clock. Or so he believes.… The real fate of the women will prove more twisted than he could have ever imagined.
Nothing says ‘Welcome to Scotland’ better than the Perfect series by Helen Fields. In fact, it is also the darkest door to your nightmares!
I have been a huge fan of the series for some time now, catching up with the books so quickly I needed a fix. This is why I said ‘I do!’ when I was asked if I would
marry Helen Fields listen to the re-recorded version of Perfect Remains.
I remember reading the series stirred in me so many emotions.
- Repulsion. You will not be investigating people dying of old age here. The killers are nasty, they have intent, they have means, they have blood on their hands. You will hardly find more captivating bad guys.
- Curiosity. Why? How? WHY??? HOW??? Here, the plots are never far-fetched. They stretch the possibilities so most regular brains have a difficult time to process the horrors laid at their feet. The reality that someone could actually do this is horrendous. But the truth is here, and used with brio to give the monsters under the bed a face.
- Fondness. The main characters, Luc Callanach and Ava Turner, make this series special in many ways. I can’t tell you anything here as I am trying to be as vague as possible, but let’s say they make a good team, despite their flaws, past, and personalities!
- Addiction. Helen Fields turns words into a drug I can’t get enough of. Every single time.
Talking about words being addictive… What about this audiobook! Meggy, you are supposed to review the audiobook!!!
Alright! Perfect Remains. Doesn’t this title give you goose bumps? No rip-off here, the author clearly states you’re going to find body parts!!! And Perfect? Oh, chilling!
If the words on paper had such an impact on me that I had to rush to get all the available books, this recorded version punched me in the stomach. In a good way. If there is a good way to be punched there. Or anywhere.
Oh my goodness! What did I just listen to???
A respected and intelligent woman’s remains are found, with barely enough to identify her. But hey, don’t we live in a world of forensics and such? Except the awfulness lies in the fact said woman, Elaine Buxton, is actually alive somewhere, at the hands of one of my favourite monsters. I loved to hate him. I believe my urge to get him behind bars, or killed, was as strong as his demoniac behaviour. Robin Laing, who narrates this book, has done a fantastic job. I was stuck with Elaine. I was living this night terror by her side. I heard her scream! And if you think it ends here, you are wrong! Brace yourself for a treacherous ride with many protagonists to root for, some to roll your eyes at, and so much action and psychology you won’t be able to do the dishes while listening to the book!!!! I recall some particularly grisly scenes listened to in the Tube, and I see myself looking at people around with a grimace on my face, ready to jump out of the coach and throw up! You need a good stomach to handle whatever Helen Fields throws your way.
Meeting the characters, well not in the flesh, but in the voice, was a weird experience for me. You see, in my head, they have faces, voices, the whole set. So, when I heard Luc’s French accent, I laughed really hard. Not because the narrator was overdoing it. He actually did a good job with all the Frenchness. No, I was laughing because the imagine and sounds of my imagination clashed with what I was hearing. Yet, it only took a couple of minutes for me to whisk and stir and mix everything so I could reunite all the elements to get my full picture of the characters again.
Perfect Remains is my favourite crime fiction audiobook. I knew the story. I knew the people living it. But my ears went through everything as if it was the first time. I felt I was enjoying a new book, within the comforting settings of Helen Fields brilliant creations. Listening to this first book in the Callanach series made me fall in love all over again. I embraced the darkness, the humour, the big plots, the subplots, the details.
Thank you to Robin Laing for giving me the priceless experience of rediscovering my favourite Scottish crime fiction series.
Find the audiobook here
Read what others have to say about the book!
My biggest thanks to Sanjana at Avon for letting me be part of this amazing tour and for providing me with an audio copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.
What to know more about the Perfect series? Check out my posts!
As you can see, I was lucky to meet the wonderful Helen last year during Bloody Scotland (thank you, Kelly!) I thought it’s been nice to use this fabulous picture and memory with the author’s bio!
Helen Fields studied law at the University of East Anglia, then went on to the Inns of Court School of Law in London. After completing her pupillage, she joined chambers in Middle Temple where she practised criminal and family law for thirteen years.
After her second child was born, Helen left the Bar. Together with her husband David, she runs a film production company, acting as script writer and producer. Perfect Remains is set in Scotland, where Helen feels most at one with the world. Helen and her husband now commute between Hampshire and California with their three children and two dogs.