Genre: Police Procedural/Crime Fiction
“Police Constable Ernie Shavers is murdered while trying to save the life of a suicidal teenager and everyone wants a piece of the killer. Some are happy to play it by the book, others don’t give a damn whether the rules are smashed to pieces. Whether they’re playing straight or crooked, they may not have long before the killer strikes again. Unfortunately it’s a big city and the current crime wave has thrown them a couple of curve balls to pile on the pressure.
At the zoo, a rhino is killed for its horn. With no evidence trail and a broken heart, DS Sue Nolan turns to an old flame, a man who always has his ear to the ground. Gangland boss, Johnny Yen, is only too happy to help, but only if he can get a little something in return.
In the centre of town, the biggest store in the city is robbed by a mannequin.
It’s the perfect inside job and the owners of the store know exactly which officer they want on the case, only the officer doesn’t feel quite the same way.
If that wasn’t bad enough, record snowfall has created chaos within the police department.
It’s going to be one hell of a Christmas.
As detectives work, they reflect upon their lives. Each of them needs to make
changes. Not all of them know where to begin.”
Nigel Bird is the author of multiple novels, novellas, and short story collections. A native of the UK, he now lives on the Scottish with his wife and three kids.
A police procedural will typically have a member or members of law enforcement, often detectives, as the protagonists and focus on their investigation and actions to solve the crime. Solving the crime might or might not involve figuring out who did it, figuring out how to prove they did it, and/or just finding the right person or persons. As a reader we’re normally like an assistant, looking over the detective’s shoulder, trying to put the clues together too.
Sometimes the reader will be given a glimpse of the suspect that the detective doesn’t get. That was the case in this story. These glimpses were interesting in that they changed what I wanted to have happen. I still wanted the culprit to get caught, but I was hoping for more. I don’t want to say more so as to avoid spoiling the story, but this aspect was a twist I can’t remember feeling in a story like this before.
As for story, it was well told. The characters are interesting and unique. A solid and worthwhile read.
Uses UK spelling conventions and slang.
No significant issues.
Rating: **** Four Stars
Reviewed by: BigAl
Approximate word count: 70-75,000 words