A KILLING WINTER by Tom Callaghan
since Arkady Renko investigated the three corpses found in Gorky Park
has a story of life in the former Soviet Union captivated me as much as A KILLING WINTER
by Tom Callaghan
Akyl Borubaev, a seasoned cop who is a member of the murder squad,
Kyrgyzstan’s homicide division, investigates the ritualistic murder of a
young woman whose mutilated body is found lying in the freshly fallen
snow. Borubaev soon discovers that the body is the daughter of the
Minister of State Security, who pressures Borubaev to solve the case
quickly, by any means possible, and to deliver the offender to him.
a former part of the Soviet Union until their independence in 1991, is
revealed as a culture filled with abject poverty, cheap drugs, and
political corruption, with most people living on the dark fringes of
society. Kyrgyzstan is a largely unknown location, and A KILLING WINTER
follows in the tradition of those thrillers set in Russia by Martin
Cruz Smith and Tom Rob Smith. Much of the story takes place in Bishkek,
the Kyrgyz capital. Callaghan skillfully creates an image of the city
that is dark, cold and depressing, adding context and depth to this
incredible debut novel.
With the help of his late wife’s uncle,
who has ties to the underworld, Borubaev’s investigation leads him
across the frozen landscape, in search of a serial killer whose violence
grows with each new victim.
Tom Callaghan delivers an often
disturbing view of life in Kyrgyzstan, and a story filled with
compelling intrigue and fascinating suspense. The story is graphic at
times, with visual detail that will transport you to the scene of the
I highly recommend A KILLING WINTER by Tom Callaghan, and
patiently await the announced sequel, A SPRING BETRAYAL, scheduled for
release later this year.
“As the ice melts, winters crimes are laid bare.”