Hey everyone…I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and are looking forward now to a great New Year! I was spoiled rotten! Santa brought me lots of wonderful bookish goodies, I got to spend time with loved ones, I ate far far too much and I even got some time to sit and read, one of my favourite things to do! What did I read you ask? The Sacrifice a debut novel by Alec Caruso, the pen name of the very talented writing team Rachel Mehal and Keith Bruton. To find out more about them, and purchase your own copy, head to Amazon and their website.
So what is the book about?
London, England. Dr Ted Conway has committed suicide. A case that should be easily closed.
After a forced break, Detective Inspector Reo Yoshima is thrust back into work, overseeing the the suicide of Dr Ted Conway, only to discover that things with this case is not what it seems to be. Trying to determine the unforeseeable truths from hidden lies, clues start finding their way together. As the case begins to unravel, it forces Yoshima into a whirlwind of discoveries, sending her to Cologne, Germany.
At first, I found the book slightly disjointed. It cuts between the aforementioned Detective Rei Yoshima in London, to detectives in Germany, a couple with fertility troubles in London and news bulletins about the Syrian refugee crisis with no apparent connection or Segway. There is also the fact that the reader’s perspective shifts between so many characters, in London and Cologne, that sometimes it can get confusing. However, slowly, the seemingly disconnected chapters link in to each other, and all of the pieces come together to form one big picture.
This is also when the book begins to pick up pace as well as increase in action and excitement. It was definitely worth reading through to this stage, and the final chapters certainly tick all of the necessary boxes you want from a crime thriller…Guns? Check. Fight scenes? Check. Murder and kidnap? Check and check. It will certainly satisfy even the most fussy of thriller fans.
It also likes to keep you on your toes, and have you guessing at who is involved in the overarching conspiracy. I don’t like to write a review with spoilers but I will say that, whilst I guessed who was good and who was bad early on, I was unaware of their motivations until the big finale and I always love a twist I didn’t see coming, so points for that.
The lead character is very real, strong but fragile, broken but trying to mend, she is likeable and believable, and more importantly she is badass. I hate weak and wobbly female leads, and Rei Yoshima could never be accused of either of those flaws. However, I was frustrated with a lack of revelations about her past. Although certain small titbits were revealed, it’s very sketchy, and although I understand this is the first in a series and the reader is meant to wait until the proceeding books to find it out, I still would have liked more.
The one negative I have to raise, and I am very aware of my own issues in this area, is the grammatical errors throughout the book. I am not the best speller, but even I spotted these glaring mistakes. At one point an entire paragraph is repeated, accidentally printed twice. A minor thing really, but it bugged me a bit. Saying that, if in a review, the only big criticism you have is with the spelling, then it must be a pretty good book!
Overall, I think it’s a very entertaining crime novel, which would be a great holiday read or something to pick up for a long journey or on the commute to work, perfect for any crime fiction fan. So give it a read, and let me know what you think!