Dead in the Water (Stonebridge #2) by Chris McDonald

The Stonebridge Regatta is looming. The town’s annual face-off against neighbouring Meadowfield is usually a weekend filled with sunshine, laughter and camaraderie. 

This year is different.

A week before the race, the body of Stonebridge team captain Matthew Henderson is found dead in the water. The police file his passing as a tragic accident however, his grieving widow disagrees and suspects foul play is involved. She enlists the help of Adam and Colin, the town’s amateur (self-proclaimed) private detectives to unearth the truth.

Did Matthew simply slip and fall into the water, or is there more to his death below the surface?

My Review

With huge thanks to Red Dog Press for inviting me to join this amazing blog tour and for providing an e-book copy to review.

I’m already a fan of Chris’ work and was very much looking forward to the mix of this author’s writing with some local cosy crime mysteries!

The story itself is only 100 pages long, however do not be fooled into thinking it would not be worth reading, as you would be completely wrong! The story overall is set at a good pace for the reader, along with plenty to enjoy along the way. There is also a full on ending filling in the spaces or questions that you may have, to be honest it was quite a surprise to find out!

The two private detectives – Colin and Adam, already have a reputation for solving mysteries within Stonebridge, where they live. Their reputation draws them into the mysterious death of Matthew Henderson. Matthew’s widow wants Colin and Adam to look into her husbands death, as she believes there is more to it and not an accident.

From start to finish I enjoyed the conversations and banter between the two main characters, what they do for a living, their lifestyle choices along with future plans. You get to know the characters really well, what they will do to even get results, regardless of the possible risks.

I believe this is quite an amazing writing skill, to include detailed information about characters while including an engaging, thrilling storyline to keep you hooked, in only 100 pages!

The stories of rival teams, the lengths they will go to to intimidate them, together with seedy little secrets, brings life to this mystery.

With this type of story the characters are relatable, you read about the methods they use to get the information they need, to piece together the clues, using their own lives to make it more believable. One of my favourite parts was the eureka moment, when all the clues came together, breaking through the ‘clue fog’ – as I call it! A race against time to save someone and get those final questions answered.

The ending was the perfect cosy mystery, classic village event, bringing together all the characters within the book, with a little clue to what might be next in Colin and Adam’s journey.

Publication date: 27 March 2021

Buy Links: 


The Red Dog Shop

About the Author

Originally hailing from the north coast of Northern Ireland and now residing in South Manchester, Chris McDonald has always been a reader. At primary school, The Hardy Boys inspired his love of adventure before his reading world was opened up by Chuck Palahniuk and the gritty world of crime. A Wash of Black is his first attempt at writing a book. He came up with the initial idea whilst feeding his baby in the middle of the night, which may not be the best thing to admit, considering the content. He is a fan of 5-a-side football, heavy metal and dogs. Whispers in the Dark is the second installment in the DI Erika Piper series, and Chris is currently working on his latest series, The Stonebridge Mysteries, published by Red Dog Press in 2021. 

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