Detective Constable Bailey Morgan is back doing what she does best – working undercover.
This time she has to infiltrate the inner circle of a notorious underworld family. Posing as a fellow villain, she is on a one-woman mission to bring the family to their knees.
But things are never that simple. Bailey finds that she is forced to confront shadowy wraiths from her past and will come face-to-face with a set of devastating revelations that will shatter her world and threaten her very existence.
With only herself to trust, Bailey is on her own and the stakes are higher than ever.
Heart-stopping and gripping. Perfect for the fans of hit TV shows such as Line of Duty and Gangs of London.
Caro Savage is a new writer to me. I had missed her debut, Jailbird published in October 2019, but I liked the sound of her latest effort, Villain.
The fact that she has the best name for a crime writer since Karen Slaughter, only interested me further!
I am happy to report that she lives up to her name: this novel is top notch. Savage manages to sprinkle the consequences of her protagonist’s previous undercover exploits through the novel with a light touch as well create a plucky, highly skilled detective who you want to go on the ride with.
It is not often that we see the far reaching results of exposure to violence and the effect that has on those that undergo it. Here, Bailey is on beta-blockers after a diagnosis of PTSD courtesy of the horrors she has previous undergone.
A bugbear of mine in crime fiction is that convincing, flowing dialogue can often be the casualty of action but Savage manages the trick of making her characters distinct, recognisable and also realistic.
The other thing that Savage manages to do is ramp up the tension. Bailey’s interactions whilst undercover make your palms sweat as the threat of violence and trauma hangs over every encounter and keeps you hooked from first to last.
I have to be honest, the seam of black humour which runs through the novel – a severed arm torn asunder by a car bomb landing with a splat in front of a homeless man in the opening pages is a particular treat – keeps this novel from the potential of all thrillers to topple towards melodrama and is like a palate cleanser from the tension and thrills.
Caro Savage has announced her arrival as a writer to take note of with this thrilling follow up to her debut and I can’t wait to come across Bailey again.
Caro Savage knows all about bestselling thrillers having worked as a Waterstones bookseller for 12 years in a previous life. Now taking up the challenge personally and turning to hard-hitting crime thriller writing, Jailbird was published by Boldwood in October 2019.
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