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I loved the first book in this series, so decided to pay more than I would normally for a kindle book, to read this one. Unfortunately, it didn't grab me as much as the first, and makes me reticent to buy the third. Graham Hurley is an excellent writer, and some of his books are among my favourite reads. I'm disappointed at the price of this authors downloads tho. For fans of Graham Hurley: try some of his standalone novels. Rules of Engagement is excellent and I have re-read this several times.
To be perfectly honest I would have to re-read this book to review it properly and I don't have time for that. It is years since I bought it having read the other Graham Hurley series of police procedural novels; the ones where the main character topped himself in self pity. Not giving too much away, it was years ago. Anyway, I am sure that I liked it although I haven't read any more since then, if they have been written; I must have another look and see.
I have read most of the previous series of books some years back, so it was great to rediscover Graham Hurley 's Suttle series. He writes well, spins a very good, structured and plotted story with an economy of style and an absence of obvious filler. Convincing dialogue is a bit of a speciality for him. Excellent!
Like just about everybody else, I was very worried by 'Western Approaches' and wondered what Hurley's writing future held. I couldn't just leave him after all these years could I? And thankfully, it's paid off as this shows him totally back on song. Certainly his best for a while, having at last ditched Bazza, Faraday and Portsmouth [well, almost]. Suttle is sorting out his problems and the future of these novels in the west country seems assured. I thought the plot in this one was very topical and dealt with real and serious issues irrespective of the plot itself which was excellent. Great stuff - now I can look forward to the next one.
Jimmy Suttle has clearly moved on to pastures new in the Devon constabulary, but has his wife? As tense and exciting as ever, and leaving plenty of new plot possibilities. I'm so into Jimmy Suttle now that I've forgotten the name of his old boss, you know, the birdwatcher single parent with the deaf son. Full of detective work and fast paced. I even found the romantic bits moving. Should suit Ian Rankin, Mark Billingham, John Harvey et al fans.
After Western Approaches I wondered if the series had lost its way, this definitely brings it back with a bang. The military aspect is really strong, and the murders keep you guessing. A real page turner, I just had to know the next twist.
I did enjoy reading this follow-up, but found it less believable than the first book in the series. Partly I think because I read it in small sections and had some problem remembering who all the characters were. I felt the use of the wife's friend in resolving the detective part of the story was a little contrived. Overall an enjoyable read, with a "must finish" factor.
Disappointingly I found it hard to maintain interest when I began the book because I couldn't warm to any of the early characters. I also found Lizzie's selfish behaviour annoying to start with, and it wasn't until Lenahan was reintroduced to interact with Jimmy that I began to enjoy the story. I soon became engrossed and was satisfied with ending.