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Blood Ties

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Two missing children. Only Pohl can save the third. Two young children have been violently abducted in broad daylight, with nothing connecting them but their disappearance. Detective Nik Pohl knows there must be a missing link, but every time he gets close to the answer people show up hurt, or worse…The kidnappings must be connected. Could it be the recent property scan Two missing children. Only Pohl can save the third. Two young children have been violently abducted in broad daylight, with nothing connecting them but their disappearance. Detective Nik Pohl knows there must be a missing link, but every time he gets close to the answer people show up hurt, or worse…The kidnappings must be connected. Could it be the recent property scandal that one young girl’s father is embroiled in, or something even bigger? Desperate to find the children and fearing there may be more victims, Pohl throws himself into the world of Munich’s grimy organised crime scene.Drug lords, money launderers and criminals stand in the way of the truth, but Pohl knows his way around, and he’s determined not to let another child disappear on his watch. Can he make the connection and identify the final target—and stop the killer—before it’s too late?


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Two missing children. Only Pohl can save the third. Two young children have been violently abducted in broad daylight, with nothing connecting them but their disappearance. Detective Nik Pohl knows there must be a missing link, but every time he gets close to the answer people show up hurt, or worse…The kidnappings must be connected. Could it be the recent property scan Two missing children. Only Pohl can save the third. Two young children have been violently abducted in broad daylight, with nothing connecting them but their disappearance. Detective Nik Pohl knows there must be a missing link, but every time he gets close to the answer people show up hurt, or worse…The kidnappings must be connected. Could it be the recent property scandal that one young girl’s father is embroiled in, or something even bigger? Desperate to find the children and fearing there may be more victims, Pohl throws himself into the world of Munich’s grimy organised crime scene.Drug lords, money launderers and criminals stand in the way of the truth, but Pohl knows his way around, and he’s determined not to let another child disappear on his watch. Can he make the connection and identify the final target—and stop the killer—before it’s too late?

30 review for Blood Ties

  1. 5 out of 5

    Lou

    Blood Ties is the second book in the Detective Nik Pohl Thriller series, set in Munich, Germany, but it is not necessary to have read the preceding novel before this one as their stories are pretty self-contained. Nik Pohl and his crime-fighting colleagues genius hacker, Jon, and pathologist, Balthasar, are investigating the disturbing case of two abducted children. However, there doesn't appear to be any rhyme or reason the team can find for them having being snatched and a motive is usually wh Blood Ties is the second book in the Detective Nik Pohl Thriller series, set in Munich, Germany, but it is not necessary to have read the preceding novel before this one as their stories are pretty self-contained. Nik Pohl and his crime-fighting colleagues genius hacker, Jon, and pathologist, Balthasar, are investigating the disturbing case of two abducted children. However, there doesn't appear to be any rhyme or reason the team can find for them having being snatched and a motive is usually what they need to help them bring resolution to a case so they are stumped. With the three protagonists' expertise, they must unearth the reasons behind the kidnappings in order to identify and locate the culprit before they take another child from their heartbroken family. The three men investigative team couldn't be more different than one another but the dynamic works surprisingly well. This is an absorbing, gritty read and once I began there was no stopping me. I felt the author did a masterful job of concealing the perpetrator's identity until the closing chapter; I read a lot of crime fiction and this is indeed a rarity. As someone who is in love with Germany, I enjoyed the Munich metropolis setting and the mention of Oktoberfest brought so many memories back to me as it is such a huge festival full of alternative people and artists. I can't think of a single other crime tale that is set within Germany. Much like all cities beneath the bright neon lights is a criminal underworld full of nefarious characters out to get what they can. It's an intriguing and engaging case moving at a swift pace and featuring an interesting and varied cast and is action-packed with humour interspersed throughout to lighten the dark topic. Many thanks to Amazon Publishing UK for an ARC.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Linda Strong

    A young girl on her way to ballet class .... her driver is shot and killed and the girl is taken. A young autistic boy walking with his mother ..... she is assaulted and the boy is taken. Yet a third boy has been missing .... no one even seems to be looking for him. Nik Pohl, once a detective, now a private investigator, is looking for a missing link that connects these children. Unfortunately, every time he gets close to the answer, someone dies. Drug lords, money launderers and criminals stand i A young girl on her way to ballet class .... her driver is shot and killed and the girl is taken. A young autistic boy walking with his mother ..... she is assaulted and the boy is taken. Yet a third boy has been missing .... no one even seems to be looking for him. Nik Pohl, once a detective, now a private investigator, is looking for a missing link that connects these children. Unfortunately, every time he gets close to the answer, someone dies. Drug lords, money launderers and criminals stand in the way of the truth, but Pohl knows his way around, and he’s determined not to let another child disappear on his watch. BLOOD TIES is filled with page turning action. Although second in the series, I would highly recommend reading them in order. This does well as a stand alone, but I would have appreciated knowing more about Nik's background ... and his close friends. It's suspenseful from the start and nicely paced until the very last page. Many thanks to the author / Amazon Publishing UK / Netgalley for the digital copy of this crime fiction. Read and reviewed voluntarily, opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own.

  3. 4 out of 5

    peggy

    Another new author for me and what a read. Two children have been kidnapped. There is no ransom so why? It is upto Nik Kohl, a very clever hacker and a ver eccentric pathologist. Between them they have to find the children and the reason they were kidnapped. This book was a joy. Plenty of action, lots of humour and a really evil head honcho. This book had me laughing, got my heart racing and just had to keep on reading, I had to know the truth. When all was revealed I was shocked. A really good Another new author for me and what a read. Two children have been kidnapped. There is no ransom so why? It is upto Nik Kohl, a very clever hacker and a ver eccentric pathologist. Between them they have to find the children and the reason they were kidnapped. This book was a joy. Plenty of action, lots of humour and a really evil head honcho. This book had me laughing, got my heart racing and just had to keep on reading, I had to know the truth. When all was revealed I was shocked. A really good read and almost five stars. I am now busy searching for more of this series. I would like to thank the author, publisher and Netgalley for the ARC in return for giving an honest review.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Xavier Hugonet

    Alexander Hartung’s Blood Ties is the author’s second book in the Nik Pohl series. However, it can be enjoyed without having read the first. Following events from the first book, Detective Nik Pohl now works privately, joined by two acolytes : Jon, an efficient hacker, and Balthasar, a pathologist (& his pet parrot). A lot of the humor all along the book stems from their interactions (let’s not forget the mandatory funny informer). A welcomed reprieve from the darkness of the main story. A teena Alexander Hartung’s Blood Ties is the author’s second book in the Nik Pohl series. However, it can be enjoyed without having read the first. Following events from the first book, Detective Nik Pohl now works privately, joined by two acolytes : Jon, an efficient hacker, and Balthasar, a pathologist (& his pet parrot). A lot of the humor all along the book stems from their interactions (let’s not forget the mandatory funny informer). A welcomed reprieve from the darkness of the main story. A teenage girl, from a wealthy family, has been abducted, while being driven to her ballet lessons. The driver is dead. No usable clues. Later on, a ransom demand appears, but Nik Pohl doubt the case is this simple. After investigating all avenues available, he and his partners conclude that as much as four parties might have been involved in this abduction. That’s when we realize we’re heading down a complex investigation, and that it is not your random Tatort episode. And all of this just before our protagonists happen unto a second kidnapping. Blood Ties is a fast paced mystery thriller with well-fleshed, and interesting characters. Dialogue flows naturally, and never feel forced nor wrong. Jon’s hacking is plausible. No Deus Ex Machinas there. This book seems to set up Nik and his friends as the Munich answer to Edward Woodward’s The Equalizer. I’ll be there to see where it goes next. Thanks to Amazon Publishing UK, Amazon Crossing, and Netgalley for a review copy of the book in exchange for an unbiased review.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Angie F

    Not having read any German fiction in the past I was unsure what to expect from this book. I was really impressed. The plot was good and until the last chapter I had no idea why the teenagers were being abducted. I loved the investigative team consisting of violent former police detective Nik, super-hacker Jon and Abba loving pathologist Balthasar. It would be hard to find a more mismatched group of men but somehow they seem to make it work. I will be purchasing more of this great author's work. Not having read any German fiction in the past I was unsure what to expect from this book. I was really impressed. The plot was good and until the last chapter I had no idea why the teenagers were being abducted. I loved the investigative team consisting of violent former police detective Nik, super-hacker Jon and Abba loving pathologist Balthasar. It would be hard to find a more mismatched group of men but somehow they seem to make it work. I will be purchasing more of this great author's work. Review posted on Goodreads and Amazon

  6. 5 out of 5

    Stefan

    After reading Broken Glass, I wanted to track down a copy of this, the second book in the Nik Pohl series and read it while the other one was still fresh in my mind. This book picks up a little while after the first book ends, with Nik, Balthasar, and Jon now working together as a team. Nik is no longer a member of the Munich CID and has warmed up to his new role as private investigator (with vigilante tendencies). Less restrictions on what he can and cannot do, which he is definitely liking. Our After reading Broken Glass, I wanted to track down a copy of this, the second book in the Nik Pohl series and read it while the other one was still fresh in my mind. This book picks up a little while after the first book ends, with Nik, Balthasar, and Jon now working together as a team. Nik is no longer a member of the Munich CID and has warmed up to his new role as private investigator (with vigilante tendencies). Less restrictions on what he can and cannot do, which he is definitely liking. Our story begins with the brutal kidnapping of a young girl from an affluent family. She is snatched in the driveway of her own home while her driver takes on her to a ballet lesson. After looking at the few details that are known, something does not sit right with Nik. The ransom demands that eventually come in just do not add up. So, the team starts digging, and find another missing child that is around the same age, and then a third. Now the fun (and not so fun) begins for the team as they attempt to figure out the who (is doing this), the why (are they doing this) and the how (are they not leaving much of a trace). If the Munich CID cannot find and catch the kidnappers, can Nik and his team find them? I am hoping that Alexander Hartung (with the help of Fiona Beaton), continue to pump out more books in this series. I also would not mind a new book or two from his Jan Tommen series either.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Cerisaye

    I read the first in the Nik Pohl series a while ago and picked up the second book from the Amazon library because it was free on Prime. I enjoyed the earlier book enough to carry on so that says something, though to be honest they're not outstanding in any way. Stock characters with some annoying stereotypes, a convoluted plot that hangs together if you don't think about it too much and relies on the amazing skills of Nik and his team, Jon the talented hacker, Balthasar the pathologist. Nik has I read the first in the Nik Pohl series a while ago and picked up the second book from the Amazon library because it was free on Prime. I enjoyed the earlier book enough to carry on so that says something, though to be honest they're not outstanding in any way. Stock characters with some annoying stereotypes, a convoluted plot that hangs together if you don't think about it too much and relies on the amazing skills of Nik and his team, Jon the talented hacker, Balthasar the pathologist. Nik has turned private investigator after leaving Munich CID, though he retains contact with sympathetic former colleagues. A missing girl and a stalled official investigation draws Nik to see what he can do to help the distraught family. I'm interested in Nik and his redemption arc, though he's not a sympathetic character- his judgemental dismissal of women due to physical attributes is not endearing. His friendships with Jon and Balthasar add humour and amusing dialogue. I was kept guessing to the end, there's well developed tension and more than enough action. I enjoy the Munich setting, too. The books would make a great TV series. Enjoyable but somehow lacking that essential something to lift out of the ordinary, in a crowded field. However, I will read the next one.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Stacey B. Plotts

    It's All Relative . . . Another Nik Pohl thriller, er mystery? Thrillerey? Whatever you call it I found it entertaining. Emotions ranging from disgust to raucous laughter crossed my mind at various points while reading about Herr Kohl's adventures while he tried to suss out what was happening with some teens. I'm never one to delve into the details of a novel I'm reviewing and I won't start now. Suffice to say if you enjoy mysteries and\or thrillers involving police and private investigators, I be It's All Relative . . . Another Nik Pohl thriller, er mystery? Thrillerey? Whatever you call it I found it entertaining. Emotions ranging from disgust to raucous laughter crossed my mind at various points while reading about Herr Kohl's adventures while he tried to suss out what was happening with some teens. I'm never one to delve into the details of a novel I'm reviewing and I won't start now. Suffice to say if you enjoy mysteries and\or thrillers involving police and private investigators, I believe you will enjoy this one. I know I did!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Taryn

    There’s just not much to these books. I’m not sensing any depth. I would absolutely watch this as a movie, but I wasn’t feeling it as a book. Three stars because I didn’t enjoy the premise of the story. I just felt the details were lacking.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Mary Lou

    Another thriller to read by Hartung Interesting plot with Nik Pohl in another chance to chase the “ bad guys.” It is surprising that with his books being translated from German they are so fascinating and readable.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Backyard Majority

    Way too long and drawn out. Reading this book was like watching a long line of dominos tumble. The plot and ending were pretty weak.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Chris McMahon

    Good page-turner. Reading it, I was as frustrated as the character Nik Pohl trying to figure out what was going on. Thorough enjoyed reading it

  13. 4 out of 5

    Carole

    Good read.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Myra Upton

    Blood ties Nik Phol is my hero. Loved this 2nd book in the series even more than the first. Thank you Alexander 💖.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Paul Ernest Denzler

    Extremely satisfying Krimi Nik is the quintessential detective. Tough, smart, principled, and a somewhat tragic character. A fun read that makes me look forward to the next book.

  16. 4 out of 5

    jon silvestri

    Mysterious! Well written. The story twists and turns. Nick pohl is a badass

  17. 5 out of 5

    Mary Rowe

    Convoluted and sparsely populated with clues, few facts to cobble together they whys and wherefores of the crimes although all becomes clear and there’s possible redemption for the grumbly former cop.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Billie

    Two missing children. Only Pohl can save the third. Two young children have been violently abducted in broad daylight, with nothing connecting them but their disappearance. Detective Nik Pohl knows there must be a missing link, but every time he gets close to the answer people show up hurt, or worse… The kidnappings must be connected. Could it be the recent property scandal that one young girl’s father is embroiled in, or something even bigger? Desperate to find the children and fearing there may Two missing children. Only Pohl can save the third. Two young children have been violently abducted in broad daylight, with nothing connecting them but their disappearance. Detective Nik Pohl knows there must be a missing link, but every time he gets close to the answer people show up hurt, or worse… The kidnappings must be connected. Could it be the recent property scandal that one young girl’s father is embroiled in, or something even bigger? Desperate to find the children and fearing there may be more victims, Pohl throws himself into the world of Munich’s grimy organised crime scene. Drug lords, money launderers and criminals stand in the way of the truth, but Pohl knows his way around, and he’s determined not to let another child disappear on his watch. Can he make the connection and identify the final target—and stop the killer—before it’s too late? This is a brilliant read. Wonderful well written plot and story line that had me engaged from the start. Love the well fleshed out characters and found them believeable. Great suspense and action with wonderful world building that adds so much to the story. Can't wait to read more of these. Recommend reading. I was provided an ARC from NetGalley and the publisher. This is my own honest voluntary review.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Cari

    Loved checking in with Nik Pohl and Loved checking in with Nik Pohl and friends once again - another page-turning adventure that had me on the edge of my seat many times. Excellent writing, & great audio, too. Can't wait for the next one! Loved checking in with Nik Pohl and Loved checking in with Nik Pohl and friends once again - another page-turning adventure that had me on the edge of my seat many times. Excellent writing, & great audio, too. Can't wait for the next one!

  20. 5 out of 5

    John Smyth

    Fast paced thriller with Nik Pohl, the former Munich detective working with his friends the ‘hacker’ and pathologist, on a kidnap case with few leads. A good holiday read but a bit too convoluted and our hero seems to have superhuman abilities to recover from beatings and being shot!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Kaye

    I wish I'd read the first book in the series, Broken Glass, before reading this installment. It might have tipped the scales in my so-so reaction to Blood Ties. First, the positive. The novel's ending provided a tidy resolution to what was a fairly messy plot. The dialogue was crisp and lively. The setting of Munich was nicely rendered. My quibbles: Once again, it seems a writer has fallen into the trap of portraying high drama in a character's life as a stand-in for depth. Nik Pohl's emotions are I wish I'd read the first book in the series, Broken Glass, before reading this installment. It might have tipped the scales in my so-so reaction to Blood Ties. First, the positive. The novel's ending provided a tidy resolution to what was a fairly messy plot. The dialogue was crisp and lively. The setting of Munich was nicely rendered. My quibbles: Once again, it seems a writer has fallen into the trap of portraying high drama in a character's life as a stand-in for depth. Nik Pohl's emotions are all over the place, without any backstory to account for them. (There is a sudden, vivid scene involving suicidal ideation, which came out of nowhere -- until I read the summary of Book 1.) And speaking of backstory, there is nothing to explain Nik's odd relationship to the other primary characters, Jon and Balthasar, and how each of them arrived at the peculiar life stations where we meet them. I was also frustrated at the repetition of Nik's interior monologue (on how deeply he felt for the young kidnap victims, ad infinitum), to the point where I skimmed those passages, muttering, "Show, don't tell." I kept reading because the author had piqued my curiosity, but there were times when it was a hard slog. I think I would have enjoyed it more if there had been a tight edit of the narrative. Thanks to NetGalley for an advance readers copy.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Marsha Owen

    Nic Pohl is a great character I really enjoyed the Book and look forward to reading more Nic Pohl adventures. Some of the scenes are a little difficult to quite believe (most amateurs cannot do all of those stunts), but the overall prose satisfies a deep "Aryan" longing in my soul. Nic Pohl is a great character I really enjoyed the Book and look forward to reading more Nic Pohl adventures. Some of the scenes are a little difficult to quite believe (most amateurs cannot do all of those stunts), but the overall prose satisfies a deep "Aryan" longing in my soul.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Martina Kovaříková

    There are times when I wish I could give half start, because I feel like this book is somewhere between 3 and 4 stars for me. It is not completely bad, but I do feel it has some weaker points, such as some characters are bit blend and also not sure how realistic, but at the same time, in this story, it is very hard to distinguest between the good guy and the villain and the story is definitely full of surprises and twists and turns, which you cannot predict. It is also interesting to see the cha There are times when I wish I could give half start, because I feel like this book is somewhere between 3 and 4 stars for me. It is not completely bad, but I do feel it has some weaker points, such as some characters are bit blend and also not sure how realistic, but at the same time, in this story, it is very hard to distinguest between the good guy and the villain and the story is definitely full of surprises and twists and turns, which you cannot predict. It is also interesting to see the characters developing deeper relationship over the course of the second book and the dynamics being established, considering what an unlikely group they were. The story is relatively well written and it has good flow and I definitely like how it is writen from mainly one character point of view, because sometimes when the story is written from several characters point of view, it can get really difficult to follow. Overall, I think if you liked the first book, you will enjoy this one as well.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Cassandra

    I recieved an electronic copy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. The prologue and the beautiful cover grabbed my attention and kept me interested in the whole story. I enjoyed the bantering between the characters, it made them have depth. The last chapter and the epilogue really made the book feel finished.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Trish R.

    Totally lost! I know it was about kids being kidnapped and Nik Pohl being confused as to why BUT there was so many players with so many German names I had no idea who they were talking about. I can’t see myself reading this author again. I could keep up with the story, mostly, but not the people they were talking about. And if you don’t know the people because of their names it’s hard to really enjoy the book. I did like his friends Jon, the hacker, and Balthazar, the pathologist. But Nik, not s Totally lost! I know it was about kids being kidnapped and Nik Pohl being confused as to why BUT there was so many players with so many German names I had no idea who they were talking about. I can’t see myself reading this author again. I could keep up with the story, mostly, but not the people they were talking about. And if you don’t know the people because of their names it’s hard to really enjoy the book. I did like his friends Jon, the hacker, and Balthazar, the pathologist. But Nik, not so much. He was standing on the edge of a rooftop and thinking of jumping and he would get so drunk it was ridiculous. That’s not my kind of hero. Another reason I won’t be reading this author. No romance and the F-bomb was used 32 times. As to the narration: Chris Andrew Ciulla was fabulous! His emotions when he reads is awesome.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Margaret Yelton

    I received Blood Ties by Alexander Hartung from NetGalley and the publisher and this is my fair and honest review. Suspense thrillers are normally one of my favorite genre's, having said that for me this book was very hard to get into. The book was well written, it was just so complicated and jumped from this character to that character i never could connect with any of the main characters in the book. I do want to thank NetGalley for the opportunity to read this book. Others may enjoy this book, I received Blood Ties by Alexander Hartung from NetGalley and the publisher and this is my fair and honest review. Suspense thrillers are normally one of my favorite genre's, having said that for me this book was very hard to get into. The book was well written, it was just so complicated and jumped from this character to that character i never could connect with any of the main characters in the book. I do want to thank NetGalley for the opportunity to read this book. Others may enjoy this book, thats why I always say everyone should make their own opinion and not rely on others thoughts on the book.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Cathlynn S.

    Good read Is Nik available? I couldn’t put the book down, very fast paced. Love the character development seen through the relations between Jon, Nik and Bal. they all have their own talents and personalities. Greed, family and arrogance are often combined to make a villain. Nik is my hero and if he likes older women I am available...

  28. 4 out of 5

    Nancy Pinter

    Should be 4.5 stars Excellent second Nik Pohl book. Lots of action, lots of twists. More character development. Great characters. I read it quickly as it really kept my interest. I would highly recommend this book to mystery readers.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Susan Potucek

    Good story The characters did not immediately appeal to me at first. I had a hard time getting into the storyline and had the answers way to early. Liked the final chapter and epilogue to tie things up.

  30. 5 out of 5

    T Olsen

    This is a well written story with a good pace and great characters, except there are too many of them due to a plot that's both strange and complicated. This is a well written story with a good pace and great characters, except there are too many of them due to a plot that's both strange and complicated.

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