As a Brightonian and an avid crime reader I was looking forward to reading Peter Guttridge's tale of generations of gangsters on the South Coast.
However I found the first part of the novel taking in Brighton from the early sixties until 1970 to be too heavily reliant on telling us who the notables of the period were and of much written about non fictional events. So we get a bewildering mix of real life pop stars and crime figures mentioned including Duane Eddy, Pink Floyd, Dusty Springfield, Matt Monro. Crimanals of the period including John McVicar, The Krays and the Great Train Robbers. Mentions of Brighton Rock, The Trunk Murders, films of the period set in Brighton including Oh What a Lovely War and On a Clear Day You Can See Forever and so on.
The use of real people and events is popular in current crime fiction, Jake Arnott is another exponent, however it can be overused as in the first of of this novel.
The second half of Last King of Brighton is much more interesting, focusing on the contempory crime scene in Brighton and in particular the rise of criminal gangs in the UK eminating from the Balkans. This battle between the old guard Kings of Brighton criminal fraternity and the frighteningly violent Eastern European invaders is well choreographed and is the novels best feature.