Can you win an election and cover up murder at the same time? When Inspector John Carlyle finds a body in a luxury London hotel room he begins a journey through the murky world of the British ruling classes which leads all the way to the top. In the middle of a General Election, a murderer is stalking the man poised to be the next Prime Minister.
With power almost in his grasp, Edgar Carlton will not stand idly by while his birthright is threatened. Operating in a world where right and wrong don't exist and the pursuit of power is everything, Carlyle has to find the killer before Carlton takes the law into his own hands.
©2011 James Craig (P)2013 Audible Ltd
"In this hard-bitten political thriller, the author skillfully portrays Carlyle as a good cop who genuinely struggles with the problems of his job and his lifestyle. Mr. Craig, a former journalist, writes with brutal candor about crimes as vicious as crimes can get.... It says something about the author's capacity for the darkest of humor when his description of a corpse superglued to a car can evoke a chuckle from the reader as police try to detach the body." (Washington Times)
"As the title of James Craig's London Calling suggests, The Clash should be the soundtrack for this close to pitch-perfect debut introducing Inspector John Carlyle." (Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel)
"Craig lards his familiar tale of revenge served cold with enough expository detail for a primer on politics and enough personal background about his hero to insure that his debut mystery won't be his last." (Kirkus Reviews)
"London Calling" has attracted more than its share of negative Audible reviews, as opposed to positive Amazon reviews, or even reviews in newspapers, such as a strongly favorable one in the Washington Post. Usually when this happens, it's because a poor narrator ruined a good story, but the narrator here is wonderful.
Yes, it's violent, but far less so than more police thrillers, where the victims are nearly always women who are prey to terrible men. Here, the "victims" deserve some kind of punishment, exposure for their deeds at the least.
I didn't find this story offensive. By my lights, it's very well written, with a great central character and a fast-moving plot. I enjoyed it thoroughly and look forward to other titles in the series.
"I couldn't finish it."
This audiobook was very dark and the violence graphic - not my cup of tea and not easily skimmed over as each victims murder was treated to a gratuitous blow by blow description. The storyline hops between time periods as the author attempts to put flesh on his character, thus creating a detective who is unappealing and in need to a good shake. I was left with a storyline I had no desire to see resolved and a main character I had no interest in.
The narration was unimaginative and at times, stilted. I found it an uncomfortable listen from the first.
London Calling is definitely NOT your run of the mill crime novel, Inspector Carlyle is a plodder, a square peg in a round hole, he's not very nice, complacent and impotent to the powers that be who surround him.
I found his inner monologues and observations wry, crude, witty, strangely insightful and honest, also very cynical. This point of view was refreshing and the rude tongue in cheek dark humour had me chuckling.
It does meander and jumps between every mundane thought he thinks to titbits of of London historical facts that entertained.
The politics and very real social hard truths are inescapable and strips bare the nastier side and selfishness of human nature, it kind of left me rather depressed, but still morbidly fascinated as sadly even though amplified in the novel is sad but true.
Some might be uncomfortable with our murderers point of view as they are graphic and I could not help but grimace and twinge in sympathy.
What was new for me is that I could empathise with the murderer I wanted the protagonists all to suffer, just maybe not in the way the murderer wanted.
I'm in two minds about this début that even though I found the subject matter distasteful it will stay with me for a long time,..
"Drivel, poorly read and dreadfully constructed"
The novel claims to give an account of class in modern England but fails to notice that class is no longer an issue but for a few alienated journos. The failure to notice that gentlemens' clubs all now admit women is but a small sample of how poorly it was researched.
Detective fiction has become the de rigeur form of the modern novel. If handled well it can do a lot. If handled with all the aplomb of a comic for eleven year old boys it cannot and can never please.
The narrator did his best to make the novel sound like a boys' own comic but his failure to check out how to pronounce words like Pakenham made his reading sound even more trivial than the book itself.
Why do you publish so poor a writer?
I look forward to coming across a new author and enjoy political crime, but this one did not make it. Carlyle himself comes over quite well as do some of the Cambridge educated politicians, but the violence was too graphic and the sex was there to shock but just became repetitive. Seemed like a copy and paste job after a while.
His method of showing why Carlyle is isolated as a detective by time-hopping, worked well, but I don't think I will be following this series
"Please don't bother, awful."
Did not get past the first hour of this terrible book. I am a big crime thriller fan, this book brings the genre into disrepute. The quality of writing is pretty dire, some of the characterisation is just stereotypical and totally unbelievable. The violence and graphic sex scenes are so poorly written that I began to think the book was a very poor dark comedy.
The narrator would be fine narrating a children's book, but not a gritty thriller. There are so many fine crime thrillers available on Audible, I beg you not to consider this terrible offering.
just could not follow this. too disjointed gave up at chapter 5 .maybe I am too used to the likes of Mo Hayder and TF Muir
"Really not worth reading unless you like porn!"
I have 27 books from audible and this is the first book that I find myself embarrassed when reading - the description of sex scenes / gay sex exploits is really unacceptable
Cut out the sex and focused on the story!
Can I get my credit back for this?
No to author. Yes to narrater
Upset at wasting my time and money
"Rather two dimensional and stereotypical"
Although I quite enjoyed the book and liked the character of the policeman, I really felt that the posh, privileged, boys from a private school and university who had their circle of underlings beholden to them - enough to do whatever is asked, even when they are all adults, a bit hackneyed.
It was an OK read and I enjoyed it and would recommend as a light, holiday-type read.
Yes, the reading was good, his accent, tone and intonation really matched each character and mad when come alive
Yes, I can, but it would be like so many others...... I haven't bothered to cast it In my mind, which I usually do with most books.
"A detective story set in the world of politics"
I like the protagonist and the setting of the story. Some of the portrayals of crimes were rather off putting, particularly the rape scene.
I had guessed the ending quite early.
The scenes depicting Carlyle at his work, which is most of the book.
London Calling is a solid detective story with a likeable protagonist and interesting plot twists.
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