Tuesday, 17 May 2016

I still don't know why 'We are the Hanged Man'

The Hanged Man is coming, and there's nothing you can do to stop him ...

Durrant was the most brutal, psychotic killer the Met had ever come across. Captured in the early '80s, he should have been in prison for the rest of his life. Someone had other ideas.

Thirty years later, DCI Jericho, the man who put Durrant away, is working in quiet anonymity in the West Country, living with the guilt of the one case he never solved:  the disappearance of his own wife.

The Hanged Man tarot card that arrives in the mail seems like a trivial joke, but it's only the beginning.  Soon people are disappearing, and Durrarnt is back to his old ways.

Suddenly Jericho is being thrown to the wolves.  The noose tightens, the body count rises, and events spin helplessly towards a shocking and bloody climax.

This is a police procedural novel set in the West Country of the UK.  Although it is well plotted and makes you want to continue reading it is written in a gloomy ploddy fashion, much like the protagonist of the novel. 

DCI Jericho is rather an unlikeable gloomy, damaged (aren’t they all?) do with only one real companion in the Somerset and Wells Police force.  He is even disliked by his Chief Superintendent (the reason for which is divulged later in the novel).  He does not suffer fools gladly and despises a lot of things especially cheap ‘popular’ television and yet he is assigned to be the Police representative for a reality TV show. 

So whilst he is not participating in the reality show is also has to try and sole a crime or two.  This character did not really come off the page for me.  I think he was too much inside his own head.

I did not really get into this novel despite it being well written and with an intriguing plot.  Don’t get me wrong I love mystery thriller novels and the creepier and gorier the better but this one was so bland.  There were humorous light touches thanks to the DCI’s only ‘friend’ and partner DS Haynes; but other than that there was very little to bring this novel out of the doldrums.

Like the rest of the novel the ending felt flat too.  Too little action rather too late with very little explanation and too many things were left open ended – a perfect set up for book 2 (which I was going to read next but needed something lighter before getting to it).

I am not really into satirical books and perhaps for this reason this novel didn’t grab me.  If this genre of book is your bag then this is probably the book for you.

Thank you Netgalley for allowing me to read this book for an honest review.  

Netgalley 3 stars; Goodreads 2 stars; Amazon 3 stars.

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