Mark Billingham is considered to be one of the most reliable practitioners of the modern British crime novel ... Tom Thorne [is as] satisfyingly un-PC as ever ... a rich cast of characters and tense situations are marshalled with panache, leading to a final terrifying encounter.
The jokes, and Billingham’s constant references to the modern world, serve to make the police officers feel more human. The strength of the DI Thorne series is that it deals with the real world, and real events ... The Killing Habit really is a crime novel that could not exist in another time. The only question is how well a novel that is so firmly entrenched in its era will age, but rereading Billingham’s earlier Thorne novels shows that this isn’t a concern. Here is an author whose works are consistently good, and each one ages like a decent bottle of wine ... The characters feel real, they laugh and bicker and fret just like real people ... The closing of the novel will please even the most discerning fan of the police procedural.
...[a] popular, award-winning, and well-crafted police procedural series ... The resolution is purr-fect ... Billingham has experience writing for television, and his novels practically cry out for adaptation, to be placed alongside such hit series as Prime Suspect, DCI Banks, Scott and Bailey, and his earlier novels.