Book review-Good Girl Bad Girl: A Gripping Crime Thriller (Karl and Marty Book 1)

Cover page for the book Good Girl Bad Girl: A Gripping Crime Thriller (Carl and Marty Book 1)

Author:  Ann Girdharry.

She is a British novelist.  Writes crime thrillers and psychological suspense. 

Good Girl Bad Girl is a deep.  black, psychological crime thriller with some hard stuff inside its pages.


Book blurb on

The darkest crimes can't stay hidden forever. 

A young body by the river in London, and a matron murdered at a children's home thousands of miles away... could there be a link?

Only one person wants to find out—Kal. Kal's journalist mother was researching the story, and now she's missing. 

Kal's father was a criminal, which is why she trusts no one and least of all Detective Inspector Spinks.  Kal takes on the investigation herself and discovers a terrible link between her own family and the crimes that are being committed. 

Trafficking deception and dark family secrets - she'll be forced to contact her own worst nightmares, and an alliance with the police, if they're going to nail a twisted killer.

Good Girl Bad Girl is an Eric Hoffer Book Award Finalist.

My Review

At the centre of the story is Karl Medi.  She is twenty-eight and a photojournalist, living for her career and practising martial arts.  She gets to know her mother, a person doing research for a company, is missing.  Against the reader's wish to summon the matter to the police, she gets busy investigating herself.  

She has little trust in the police investigating her missing mother.  She got that mistrust from her father, Medi, a criminal who put little faith in the authorities.  Her father is no longer with whom she had a checkered relationship.  He had taught her one or two life-saving skills.  With all that, she sets out to investigate her missing mother with the help of her trusted friends.

Karl learns that her mother had a boyfriend, Alister Kealy, a wealthy philanthropist and surgeon-doctor.  Alister is a man of polished features whose body language does not make a good impression on her.  He runs a biotech company for charity, which manufactures highly sophisticated artificial limbs for amputee street children in Calcutta, India.

His company runs its sophisticated business in Calcutta, a populated Indian city, and a school of charity for street children, who are the beneficiaries of its charity.  Karl visits the establishment and ensures entry as a volunteer helper.  When she exits the place, she gets plentiful details on its checkered functioning as a cover for Kealy's clandestine deals. 

Kal is back in London, and Girdharry takes us through the one-on-one outside, relaxed, distrusting inside approaches between Kal and Alister.  During that time, we get into Karl's family history and how it connected with Alister's.  Funds were brought into the family on account of the notorious drug deals, followed by bitter confrontations and losses.  While all those are happening, we get a grating concern about Karl's mother and whether her investigation had shifted interest from her missing mother.

Then, there came a scene where Karl showed interest in cooperating with the police for her mother's sake. 

An impressive character building and motivation. 

Girdhary's 'Good Girl Bad Girl' is a fast-paced, deep, dark, psychological thriller that intrigues the reader by creating mystery on every page. 

Karl is the main character in the story.  She is a third-generation Indian living in the UK.  Her action, undertaking the investigation of her missing mother's whereabouts on her own with the assistance of her marshal arts friends, though slightly dampening at the beginning pages on the readers, will justify it as the reason for such gets revealed to them.  

Her relationship with her father has given her a lot of self-doubt, and she is a loner, having not much connection with others and no trust in the authorities.  A lesson for which she got the training from her father, who was a criminal himself. 

The story gives a believable narrative of the school for the street children in Calcutta and of the unsuspecting criminal links living in England doing their clandestine child trafficking. 

During the story, Kal learns about her three-generation family's involvement in the dark business and her father's relationship with her.  Towards the end, Kal transforms to trust the UK police. 


If anything to suggest to improve the story is the initial to-ing and fro-ing that puts the reader in doubt about where the story takes them. 

My rating is 4,5/5

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I got a copy of the book using my Kindle Unlimited membership.

This post is part of the Bookish League blog hop hosted by Bohemian Bibliophile.