Henley's identity certainly isn't the focus of The Jigsaw Man, but it permeates the novel...It adds an additional layer of complexity to an already well-written and engaging novel ... I was invested in Anjelica's story from the very beginning ... almost painfully real, as you get a peek at Henley's raw, unfiltered thoughts and emotions, and it made me empathize with her almost immediately...Her past trauma comes roaring to the surface in an excellent examination of PTSD, which is such a presence it almost functions as an entirely separate character in this thoughtful novel ... Matheson writes a tense, fast-paced narrative in The Jigsaw Mann, and I enjoyed every second I spent with it. I'm finding it increasingly difficult to sit and concentrate on books these days, but I read this one in a single sitting — the twists and turns are excellent, and the author ratchets up the suspense with every chapter. She also writes a fascinating and complex villain ... One aspect of the novel that really jumped out at me was the way that Matheson develops her secondary characters. They're not all necessarily likeable, and they certainly aren't perfect, but even people who are only on the page for a few scenes come to life in a really stellar way. The author makes this kind of character development seem easy and effortless, no small feat given the number of characters and the fact that it's her debut. I really enjoyed getting to know these people, in particular Henley's new partner, Salim Ramouter, and look forward to revisiting them in future installments ... This novel certainly has a gritty feel, but it never exploits darkness or despair for thrills. Instead, even in its most gruesome moments, it has a very real quality to it. Matheson has a fresh voice and perspective, and I'm incredibly excited to see where she takes these characters in future novels — you can bet I'll be reading every book she writes for the foreseeable future.
When I finished reading Matheson's The Jigsaw Man (in one sitting), I was gobsmacked to note that this nerve-racking, jaw-dropping, grisly, accomplished police procedural was Matheson's debut. Not only is the serial killer a fully fleshed out character (sorry, not sorry), but Detective Inspector Anjelica Henley is as worthy an opponent for a serial killer as Clarice or Tony Hill. Except Henley is a Black detective, complex, complicated, in charge, and fighting hard to stay a step ahead of the hacked-off body parts surfacing on the streets of London like puzzle pieces.
... Matheson explodes onto the packed serial-killer thriller scene with a dynamite novel that grabs you from the first page. The Jigsaw Man involves an intricate pair of plots and a brilliant killer who has produced a copycat who is terrorizing London ... As a criminal defense attorney in London, Matheson is knowledgeable about this subject matter and understands the inner workings of the criminal justice system ... Matheson is a brilliant new voice in a crowded genre. She has created such complex and multilayered characters on both sides of the law that I sincerely hope she plans to continue this series in new cases. The Jigsaw Man most assuredly will be one of the most talked-about debuts of 2021, and thriller fans should not miss it.