The Detective Kate Hamblin Mysteries is a contemporary crime series written by David Hodges, a former superintendent of the Thames Valley Police, with thirty years of experience in the force.
His Somerset Murder novel series depicts the investigation of tenacious detective Kate Hamblin and her laid-back partner, Hayden, on the mist-shrouded Somerset Levels in England.
How to read the Detective Kate Hamblin Mystery Series in Order?
The books of this Somerset Murder mystery series are offering self-contained mysteries, but the life and career of Kate Hamblin is evolving from one book to the other.
- Murder on the Levels (aka Firetrap, 2011) – In an effort to apprehend a deranged arsonist, detective Kate Hamblin is conducting surveillance on the Somerset Levels. She exits the van briefly. Then it catches fire, killing her two coworkers.In addition to being cut out of the murder investigation and virtually suspended from duty, Kate is accused of leaving them. To prove herself innocent and catch the murderer, she will stop at nothing. She puts everything at stake by forming an unholy alliance with the main suspect in the murder investigation. In addition to becoming the object of her own DCI’s personal animosity, Kate finds herself being hounded by the assailant she is after.
- Revenge on the Levels (aka Requiem, 2012) – Two years ago, after killing two police detectives with an incendiary device and going on a homicidal spree on the Somerset Levels, schizophrenic undertaker Larry “Twister” Wadman vanished. Most people’s memories have become blunted, but Detective Kate Hamblin, the only survivor of the slaughter, cannot forget. Then a prostitute’s body is discovered in a coffin, disguised as a police officer, in Twister’s abandoned funeral home. Kate is aware that her old nemesis has returned and is trying to harm her.
- Fear on the Levels (aka Strawfoot, 2015) – In the midst of a nearby scarecrow festival, a teenage girl who was last seen leaving a party is discovered murdered and half-naked in her own barn. The horrific crime is an exact replica of Martha Tinney’s murder, which took place 150 years ago and was thought by the superstitious townspeople to have been murdered by a ghostly scarecrow known as Strawfoot. In their desperate attempts to find the copycat murderer, Kate Hamblin and her coworkers learn that he has no intention of ending with just one murder and that he has since grown suspiciously interested in Kate.
- Killer on the Levels (aka Sandman, 2015) – While reporting the greatest flooding the Somerset Levels have ever seen, a news crew discovers missing journalist Ellie Landy in the River Parrett. A book with a mystery inscription stating “Sandman” and a time of day is discovered next to the woman’s bed. Police believe the drowning was unintentional. Kate defies authority and investigates the death because she thinks it wasn’t an accident. Kate Hamblin finds herself being sucked more and deeper into a nightmare of murder, deceit, and depravity when another lady passes away under mysterious circumstances.
- Secrets on the Levels (aka Deadly Secrets, 2017) – When Detective Kate Hamblin finds herself looking at the wrong end of a double-barrelled shotgun on a soggy stretch of Somerset marshes, she thinks her luck is running out. Lenny Stallard, a bad guy who recently escaped from jail, is the target of her investigation. He was incarcerated for the colonel’s elderly wife’s murder during a heist at their country home close to Bridgwater. The deaths of potential trial witnesses are starting to pile up, and it looks like revenge is the motivation. For DS Lewis’s bosses, this is a clear-cut case. But is it?
- Death on the Levels (2019) – A strange letter threatening to harm his aunts is delivered to the police station. The team at Detective Kate Hamblin doesn’t take it seriously. However, a suffocated elderly woman was discovered in her house. In crimson lipstick, “RIP Auntie” is scrawled on the ground. The murder of another elderly woman follows. It soon becomes apparent that they are up against a highly deadly serial killer who is involved in some sort of personal revenge while a significant police manhunt is underway. a rival who won’t let up until he accomplishes what he set out to do.
- Poison on the Levels (2020) – As Tammy Logan leaves the Glastonbury Music Festival, she is kidnapped by an unknown intruder in broad daylight. The attractive young lady vanishes without a trace. At the same time, a vengeful poison pen writer tears apart a quiet village on the Somerset Levels as he joyously sets out to expose an apparently respectable community’s sinister secrets. People are being encouraged to commit suicide by the letter writer. Kate has her hands full trying to solve the two cases.
- Witch Fire on the Levels (2020) – The young woman flees in fear and into Detective Kate’s car’s path. On the foggy marshes, the unnamed woman is running from something really unusual. She goes into a coma. In the meantime, Kate looks into Lilith, a local who resides in a remote old cabin and is accused of being a witch. She is charged with damaging a church. But Lilith is no longer there. Kate finds hemlock and two creepy ragdolls with pin piercings inside her shack. Both resemble clergyman Jacob Truly and police officer Eddie West. The events that follow are terrifying for the neighborhood, but Kate thinks that the culprits are nearby rather than the main suspect Lilith. What actually is happening?
- Stalker on the Levels (2021) – One late night, renowned crime author Tamara Callaghan is relaxing on her terrace when a guy emerges from the woods. Except for the hood covering his head, he is completely nude. Tamara slams the patio door shut as she enters the house again. He is pressed up against the window as she turns to look at him. Then, every copy of Tamara’s new book is shredded at a book signing. Someone is clearly trying to harm her. The investigation is given to Detective Kate Hamblin.
- Venom on the Levels (2022) – In the swampy wilds of the Somerset Levels, Detective Kate is asked to investigate a theft reported at Moat House. The evidence suggests that a passing vagrant randomly broke in, but when Kate investigates the affluent homeowner Professor Dunbar, and his bitter family, she discovers that there is more to this crime than first appears. Arachnologist Professor Dunbar is well-known around the world. The world’s deadliest spider among his sizable collection of live tropical spiders is a Brazilian wandering spider, whose bite is instantaneously lethal. She has the name Martha. Then a family member is discovered in the professor’s lab, writhing in pain and dying.
- Watcher on the Levels (2023) – At a posh resort in Mexico, Detective Kate is lounging on the beach and feels confident enough to take off her bikini top. Then she receives an unknown SMS. Someone enters her hotel room later that evening and searches through her possessions. Additionally, a woman dies after falling from the balcony above. Is everything connected? Being able to escape the unwanted attention and go home makes Kate happy. However, when she returns to Somerset, she digs into her coat pocket and pulls out a note that reads, “See You Soon, Kate.”
- Storm on the Levels (2023) – After a little getaway for two, Detective Kate and her husband Hayden are returning home when a fierce storm sweeps in and their car breaks down. They seek refuge in a neighboring rural hotel after being stranded in the storm on a lonely path. They are not the sole visitors. A weekend-long reunion will bring together six former college classmates. In the hotel lake the next morning, a corpse is discovered. It would seem to be a horrible accident.
If you like our article about the way to read The Kate Hamblin Books in Order, don’t forget to bookmark it! The Kate Hamblin books are recommended for fans of Rachel Abbott, Robert Bryndza, Mel Sherratt, Angela Marsons, Colin Dexter, and Ruth Rendell.