Detective Inspector Sean Corrigan is not like other detectives. An unthinkable childhood left him with a fierce determination to protect the innocent. But it also marked him with an ability to identify the darkness in others - a darkness he recognizes still exists deep within himself.
When a young man is found brutally murdered, Corrigan, responsible for South London's Murder Investigation Team, takes the case. But what first appears to be a straightforward domestic murder very quickly leads Corrigan to several other victims and the most dangerous killer he's ever encountered.
The perpetrator changes his modus operandi with each crime and leaves behind not a shred of usable forensic evidence. Still, Corrigan knows beyond a doubt that the same man is behind each of these deaths, and he soon finds himself in a lethal game of cat and mouse with a killer who strikes far too close to home.
©2013 Luke Delaney (P)2013 HarperCollinsPublishers
There is no fact just fat imagination to pin a suspect from the start of the story (I thought I was reading some psychic stuff even though the leading man said he's no psychic explicitly). What if the guessing was wrong? Is this how police normally ruin people's lives when they guess wrong? I have deep problem with the protagonist that he relies on his own sense of violence so arrogantly and his sense is set to be accurate simply because the author did so. I hope the police will have special insight based on something much more concrete than DI Sean Corrigan's psychical vision.
Also I find it rather ridiculous about the idea that people recognize their own kind, because really, nobody knows nobody. AND a policeman is NOT the same kind as a killer regardless they may share the same background. Simply because policemen do not murder innocent people as murderers do!
The murders and murderer is somehow OK set up, the supporting characters are also lovable. I like the police work that has been described in the book (except DI Corrigan's "I know it's him" part). But this is not a acceptable story for me even as a debut.
The narrator is good and it is part of the things that let me finishing the book.
To get a better idea of my background. I am a working class white male in my forties. I love good fiction, and I love smart books. I have drifted towards a lot of European writers like Reginald Hill, Val McDermid.,Etc....
Steve West in my opinion did a great job. I loved the dialects. He may have put the book at a 4 star rating for me. The book was o.k.... The inspector Sean Corrigan did seem to leap to conclusions that no one else would have. I get the idea of why he is supposed to be able to do that, but he could have done it with a little bit better detective work instead of what some would call unbelievable guess work. It does have a pretty good story line overall. It can be extreme for the light hearted.
It takes a lot to rock my world anymore. Set your sights at Medium for this one, and maybe it will surprise you.
critic at large
The writing is actually quite good in this debut. I'm not a fan of murder mysteries that spend an inordinate amount of time in serial killers heads but I could have forgiven that. What I can't forgive is advancing the plot by having the detective make "intuitive leaps" based on nothing. If I hadn't been listening to this on my iPod, I would have thrown it against the wall.
Too many things are wrong with this book and they would all have to be changed:
- policeman protagonist uses "intuition" to identify the killer.
- police plant evidence in order to aid conviction - this makes the case absurd "We follow the evidence" they say, but in fact they do not
- evidence requirements seem to range from non-existent to ridiculously stringent
I kept listening - I probably would have tossed the book down if I was reading it.
The general plot and the twist were interesting. They were just not enough to outweigh the absurd bits.
If cops identify suspects by imagination then they aren't using evidence. This undercuts the whole procedural story and makes it boring.
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