*I received a free copy of this book with thanks to the author and Rachel Gilbey at Rachel’s Random Resources blog tours. The decision to review and my opinions are my own.*
Blurb: One missing girl and the whole city goes crazy.
It’s been three days, and now everyone in Brighton is looking for her. There is an army of police searching, her picture is on every front page, and the public can’t get enough of it. Gangs of good citizens are going door to door, turning their neighbours’ houses upside down, but still no one can find her.
For Brighton’s No.1 Private Detective, Joe Grabarz, it brings back too many memories of his first case, another missing girl, when he learnt too many lessons the hard way. No one was going door to door then. No one cared. But her mum and dad weren’t nearly as photogenic, nor quite so saintly.
It’s a lesson Joe learnt long ago that has come back to haunt him: choose your parents wisely.
Joe Grabarz is back for this, the second book in the Brighton Detective series, and I am glad to report that he is as snarkily morose as he was in Book 1!
You don’t need to have read the first book to enjoy this one as a stand-alone, as the main plot opens and closes in this novel, however for a full appreciation of the characters (especially Grabarz) and a better understanding of the overarching mystery of ‘M’ I would wholeheartedly recommend that you read in order. If for no other reason that they are fantastic UK crime noir reads.
The parallel storylines of the two missing girls – past and present – worked really well here, even if it meant I occasionally got confused as to which timeline we were following. Contextual clues and references were enough for me to catch up quickly and I was equally gripped by both cases to the point that I couldn’t put the book down.
There are some interesting topical themes raised here about how the media and public treat people from different backgrounds (race, religion, wealth) in the same circumstances, and about the shark frenzy of mob rule when public emotions are whipped up by high-profile cases.
Even whilst exploring serious and upsetting themes though, Tom Trott never loses sight of the entertainment aspect of his writing and the story is tight, pacy and witty throughout.
I highly recommend this series for fans of P.I. crime and the Dresden Files style of noir/humour alike, and personally I cannot wait to see what comes next…but you will have to as I am reviewing Book 3 on 21st February. Watch this space…!
The one who seemed to be the ringleader squared up to me, getting incredibly close and trying to make much more of the extra half-an-inch he had on me.
‘We’re looking for joy. We’re going to search this place.’
I was confused, and I looked it too. ‘You’re looking for joy?’
‘If she’s not here there’ll be no problem.’
A woman. Judging by the look of them, I hoped they didn’t find her. ‘You won’t find any Joy here.’
‘Sorry if I don’t take your word for it,’ he sneered.
– Tom Trott, Choose Your Parents Wisely
Choose Your Parents Wisely is available on Amazon right now.
You can find my thoughts on Book 1 here, and don’t forget to check out the other blog stops on the tour (poster below) for more great content and reviews. Pop back here on 21st February to find out my thoughts on Books 3 in this series!