Friday 5 February 2016

Review ~ In the Cold Dark Ground by Stuart MacBride

Harper Collins
January 2016

Logan McRae, the troubled Scottish sergeant who seems to attract trouble like a moth to a flame, returns in this tense and gritty novel which focuses on a dark and dirty criminal underworld.

When Logan and his team are called upon to investigate a missing person, the disturbing nature of the enquiry leads Logan in a direction he would rather not travel, but as with all complex cases, what he discovers during the investigation, will reveal more questions than it does answers. It’s difficult to say more about the plot without giving away vital pieces of information which will act as huge spoilers, so it’s really for the best if you read of the challenges that Logan faces, both in his personal and professional life, without any preconceptions.

Without doubt the story is action packed and full of gritty realism which had me on the edge of my seat, but, I think because this was the first time I had read any of the books in this series, I puzzled about certain aspects of Logan’s character and couldn’t quite make up my mind about whether he was one of the good guys.. or not. I realise that he’s a superbly flawed individual, which I why, I guess this series has run and run, and that part of his special appeal is no doubt due to his somewhat maverick approach to policing, which often gets unexpectedly good results.

Coming into a series so far down the line, really does makes a difference to the overall enjoyment. I missed lots of points of reference and I couldn’t always fathom Logan’s relationship issues, or his somewhat cavalier approach to professional standards. But putting that on one side, I am sure that fans of the series will be delighted with the story, which is well written and complex, the dirty dealings of the criminal underworld are scarily real, and Logan’s part in it, is both exciting and complex.

So, all in all, well worth a read if you like gritty crime and, of course it's a sure fire read if you've followed Logan's story from the offset.

Best read with…giddying amounts of whisky and several sausage butties, heavy on the red sauce…

Thanks to Jaime Frost at Harper Collins for my review copy of this book


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