I’m loving this Eddie Flynn series by Irish author Steve Cavanagh. The legal procedurals offer a great balance of courtroom drama, twisty plots and a really likeable and engaging cast of characters. Here in particular, amidst the legalese and police investigation, Cavanagh’s inserted the FBI. Or more aptly, an FBI-reject who I found to be fascinating. There’s reference, for example, to the much-lauded FBI’s Behavioural Analysis Unit (BAU) having very poor solve-rates and a flawed profiling methodology. *Googles to check*
I’ve only read a couple of Steve Cavanagh’s Eddie Flynn novels in the past and always reflect on how I miss the golden days of the legal procedural.
Cavanagh manages to easily traverse the balance between the mystery / crime solving element and showcasing the (both) boring and enterprising foibles of the justice system. He’s also created very likeable characters in the ensemble cast supporting Eddie and – in some ways – I find myself drawn as much to them as I do to the former con-man turned-lawyer.
I read (and enjoyed) Elle Croft’s The Guilty Wife (in early 2018) and actually have her 2019 novel The Other Sister sitting in my to-be-read pile… something I hadn’t realised before picking up her latest release.
I came across Irish author Steve Cavanagh’s name last year when his 2019 novel Thirteen won Crime Novel of the Year at Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival (which – incidentally – I’ve fantasised about attending someday). He was also touring with a number of other authors I knew so I kept seeing him on social media again and again.
It wasn’t until later I realised I’d actually read one of his books – The Liar in 2017 – which I really enjoyed. And of course I heard (only) fabulous things about Thirteen, and though I’ve not read it I really must. More so now I’ve read the fifth in the series featuring Eddie Flynn, Fifty Fifty.
I mention in my review of The Liar that it’s only when I read a legal procedural that I’m reminded how much I enjoy them. I’m also reminded that though once they were a dime a dozen and they’re now as rare as hen’s teeth. (Apologies for the idioms but you get what I mean….)
It’s increasingly common for books to reflect popular culture – true crime podcasts and the like. I’ve now read a few novels that have pursued a story either via the podcast or for the purposes of one. (As an aside, Sadie by Courtney Summers, which does exactly that was one of my favourite books for the first half of 2019.)
This is a little different in that it’s mostly about the investigation which may (or may not) result in a podcast. But I guess this book by AL Gaylin also takes the opportunity to consider 21st century journalism, news and our consumption of information. In some ways it’s a peripheral issue, but in others a reminder of how different today’s world is from that of 40yrs ago.
As I started this book I was reminded of Margaret Atwood’s Alias Grace (similarly centred around a patient and therapist). Although I read that book a long time ago, I recently watched the adaptation on Netflix, so I was a tad nervous one of our lead characters here, Theo, didn’t suffer a similar fate to Grace Marks’ therapist in Atwood’s book.
I requested Louis and Louise based on my enjoyment of Together (a life story told in reverse) but wasn’t sure what to expect from the backcover blurb.
Linwood Barclay is one of my go-to authors, so I’ll snap up any book he releases. Recently I’ve been enjoying his Promise Falls series, but this is a standalone and – though elements are kinda ‘guessable’ – it’s still twisty and most definitely a great read.
I’ve read a few books lately about those wrongly accused (or at least claiming to be) but thankfully they’re all quite different so it’s not like I’m going into them assuming someone’s guilt OR innocence.
Interestingly I have 50,000 words of a novel I started years ago which starts a little similarly to this and I was worried my book – if I ever progress it – would be redundant if this went in a similar direction. It doesn’t, so everyone can breathe a sigh of relief that my masterpiece needn’t be shelved. (Well, more than the 6yrs it’s languished in my online drafts folder anyway!)