Now this was dark fun!
Wilbur Cox works in an advertising agency in London. He commutes in every day from north of London. He likes to go for a drink with his colleagues before catching the train home. It’s a bit of a walk to the tube station, but there’s a short cut through a building site which cuts the corner. When he sees a man staggering towards him, he moves out of the way assuming him drunk, but then man moves back to hit shoulders as they pass, and as they separate he says something nasty to Will. Something snaps in Will and he turns and clocks him one on the jaw, and the man goes down, hitting his head.
Yes, Richard King, for that’s the name of the other chap, is dead. Will is of course terribly shocked and panic-stricken, but the alley is empty, there is no CCTV.
We are now in the territory of a ‘Can he get away with it?’ murder mystery.
The novel’s tagline of course tells us that it won’t be that simple… apart from the fact that the police are interviewing everyone in the area that night and Will will be one of them, some one else did see it happen.
Will carries on with his life, even gaining a new girlfriend, Ellie, but life isn’t simple. He’s tense, he’s worried, he can’t sleep or concentrate at work. The police have worked out that he must have missed the assault by a mere minute or so, the pressure is on him to remember anything… they have a suspect in mind, another man who King had had an altercation with, and a nasty piece of work.
Then he’s contacted by Solly and his troubles begin to multiply. Solly lives up in that tower block, and has some hi def cameras – the clip he sends Will shows him clearly.
I’m not going to say much more, but Reeves takes us on a roller-coaster ride. It’s hard not to be on Will’s side, but I can’t say I morally approve! It’s dark, but not without a blokey humour, you can almost feel the cogs whirring in Will’s brain as he struggles to work out what to do about Solly and the police. It’s pacy too, and the pages sped by in this debut novel. I really enjoyed it.
Source: Review copy – thank you. No Exit Press hardback, 329 pages.
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