I am thrilled to be taking part in this blog tour and reviewing this first in this series by Graham Brack. My post may be up a day late but don’t let that give you the wrong impression, this book is definitely worth the wait!
Blurb: What do you do when the poison comes from within…?
The body of a young woman is found strangled by the side of the road. There are no obvious clues to what happened, apart from the discovery of a large amount of cash concealed on her person.
Lieutenant Josef Slonský is put in charge of the case. With a wry sense of humour, a strong stubborn streak and a penchant for pastries, Slonský is not overly popular with the rest of the police force. But he is paired with the freshly-graduated, overly-eager Navrátil, whom he immediately takes under his wing.
When fingers start to point inwards to someone familiar with police operations, Slonský and Navrátil are put in a difficult position.
If what they suspect is true, how deep does the corruption run? Are they willing to risk their careers in their pursuit of the truth?
Anyone could be lying – and others may be in danger of dying.
My Review: I’ve always been a fan of police procedurals but equally I am trying to expand my reading and that includes reading books set in different countries. This book, therefore, having been set in Prague fits the bill perfectly.
I’ve had trouble with my review of this book. It’s not the book’s fault, it’s trying to do it justice that is the problem. I loved the blurb, it sounded like a solid police procedural with a quirky lead character in Slonsky and that’s exactly what it is. However, there is so much more to it. There is a lot of depth to the characters, even the ones who are only in the book for a page or two. The writing brings the story and the characters to life so well that they leap off the page. The story is clearly a serious one, murder is never anything else, but there is a lot of humour is the story which had me laughing away, something that rarely happens when I’m reading, even with the supposedly hilarious stories.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book, so much so that before I was half way through it I wanted to get hold of the next in the series. Being a blogger I read a lot of books and hear about so many more but rarely do I ever want to read the rest of a series before I’ve finished the first book. Slonsky and Navratil make a perfect team and I can’t wait to see where their work takes them next!
About the author:
Graham Brack hails from Sunderland and met his wife Gillian in Aberdeen where they were both studying pharmacy. After their degrees Gillian returned to Cornwall and Graham followed. This is now called stalking but in 1978 it was termed “romantic”. They have two children, Andrew and Hannah, and two grandchildren, Miranda and Sophie.
Graham’s foray into crime writing began in 2010 when he entered the Crime Writers’ Association’s Debut Dagger competition and was highly commended for The Outrageous Behaviour of Left-Handed Dwarves (reissued as Lying and Dying), in which the world was introduced to Lt Josef Slonský of the Czech police. The Book of Slaughter and Forgetting (reissued as Slaughter and Forgetting) followed and Sapere Books have published book three, Death On Duty,
In 2014 and 2016 Graham was shortlisted for the Debut Dagger again. The earlier novel, The Allegory of Art and Science, is set in 17th century Delft and features the philosophy lecturer and reluctant detective Master Mercurius. Sapere Books will publish it as Death in Delft in 2018.