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Sampson, Kevin - 'The Killing Pool'
Hardback: 320 pages (Mar. 2013) Publisher: Jonathan Cape ISBN: 0224073052

A headless corpse is discovered by Detective Chief Inspector Billy McCartney in scrubland close to Liverpool docks with the body looking like a gangland hit. A mile away, a dazed and confused girl staggers into a run-down bar where the owner, a career criminal called Shakespeare, cannot get a word out of her.

The body was that of Kalan Rozaki, youngest brother of a notorious crime family but he was the white sheep in the family. For almost a year his brothers have been under full-time Drug Squad surveillance as DCI McCartney slowly closed the net on their heroin trafficking - his chief informant was someone who had insider knowledge of the Rozaki clan's operation ... their newly deceased baby brother, Kalan.

His investigation starts to solve not only this crime but another unsolved drug crime of nearly 30 years ago.

I have to admit that I found this one a struggle to get through. There is a very competent police procedural hidden within here but the structure of multiple viewpoints which you shift from sometimes on a pagely basis in the initial pages makes it very difficult to keep track of the narrative unless you are really concentrating - it is not a commute read. Nonetheless I might be tempted by the next one, as this is described as the first in a series, though I would like to read a few reviews first.

Mark Bailey, Northern Ireland
July 2013

More European crime fiction reviews can be found on the Reviews page.

last updated 27/07/2013 19:10