I greatly enjoyed Louise Welsh's previous novels. Unfortunately, this most recent one is not as good as the others.
Some aspects of "Naming the Bones" are reminiscent of The Cutting Room
and The Bullet Trick
. Slightly desperate, seedy characters have various sordid encounters. The familiar gritty tone is there throughout, and there is a very strong sense of place.
However, the plotting in "Naming the Bones" is weak. Characters are intimately connected to the action in one chapter, then forgotten about in the next, only to make a "surprise" appearance at the climax. The pacing is uneven, with too much squeezed into the final chapters.
From another author this would have been a good read, but measured against Welsh's usual standards it is disappointing.