Published - 16/11/2018
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Review - 3.75 stars
A story for those who love police procedural novels, J.F. Burgess has created what feels like a true to life drama. With its local connects part of the appeal, the story follows DI Blake and DS Murphey as they try and solve a local murder as well as staying hot on the trail of a crime gang who are determined to steal the Staffordshire Hoard.
The plotline of this novel was interesting, with multiple threads and characters to hold onto it also requires some concentration. I was immediately rooting for DI Blake and DS Murphy and loved their on-page banter as well as the demonstrable respect that they had for each other as the story progresses. The introduction of all the characters was done incredibly well and held my interest, especially when the first murder occurred. The bad guys were suitably evil, however there was definitely some blurring of the lines which makes the characters multi-dimensional. The characters and their development throughout the novel are a definite highlight for me. As the story progressed, I was more drawn in and intrigued by what was going on. I also enjoyed (perhaps the wrong word) the family drama that was introduced and think that it made the characters more human, I was reading with my heart in my mouth when his daughter was kidnapped.
The ending is impressive and, whilst not obvious it is certainly solvable. I will say, however, that if you have an aversion to swearing then this probably isn’t the book for you. As with many books of this genre, action cannot be happening all the time. J.F. Burgess gives the reader time to calm down from the more active sequences towards the end, just before the big reveal.
I enjoyed this book and was fully immersed the majority of the time. I look forward to more books from Mr Burgess, especially if they are to be set in Stoke on Trent.
Many thanks to J.F. Burgess for sending me a free copy of this book in exchange for a full and unbiased review. All opinions are my own.