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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just superb!
It always helps to have a bent copper in your pocket, but one bent copper is never enough as David Blake finds as he tries to run his north-eastern empire of crime while anonymous enemies are out to kill him and cut in on his turf. Blake has already made himself number one in Newcastle and then relocated to a distant headquarters in Thailand for his health's sake, but as...
Published on 2 May 2012 by Mr. Michael Stotter

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I read it all, but not my cup of tea
I seem to buy an awful lot of books at 99p. The reason is that Kindle only gives me a 'read' of a book. I cannot pass it on and it is difficult to leaf backwards to find bits which I might wish to refer to again. This obsession with 99p books is why I found myself reading The Damage. It is well enough written, but I found the self centred main character extremely...
Published 13 months ago by para3drop


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5.0 out of 5 stars Assured crime thriller that cries out for a television adaptation, 28 Jun 2012
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A. D. A. Davis "lodge41" (London, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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It's a measure of Howard Linskey's compelling writing style that I found myself setting aside the DVD of The Killing to read The Damage.

Linskey picks up where he left off in The Drop once again exposing us to the toxic, cruel, oppressive world of organised crime on the Tyne, as seen through the eyes of our ambivalent protagonist David Blake. As before, the writing style is taut, pacy and assured with a succession of interwoven plots and sub-plots that keep us guessing right to the last page. Simply put, this is a fantastic read!

It will be interesting how they adapt both books to television which they surely must.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great read!, 15 Jun 2012
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This review is from: The Damage (David Blake Book 2) (Kindle Edition)
I read 'The Drop' on a recomendation from a collegue and found it difficult to put down. Receiving a Kindle as a gift the first book purchase was 'The Damage' and again a really good read. More please Howard!
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5.0 out of 5 stars How English gangland noir should be written, 11 Jun 2012
This review is from: The Damage (David Blake Book 2) (Kindle Edition)
It's fair to say, in terms of writing, I've got some pretty staid opinions. I can't abide adverbs, adjectives, exclamation marks, or prologues. Thankfully, The Damage is brilliantly written, so the first three were thankfully absent. As were the exclamation marks. But there was a prologue. I bristled, but knowing Howard to be an excellent writer, I read on. I read on and on, and I didn't stop till the final chapter brought me to the thrilling end.

You see, with the best of writers, and Howard Linskey has proved to me with THE DAMAGE he is among them, they teach us other writers stuff. And the use of the prologue for me was a big lesson. That displacement in time and location that is sometimes necessary to set the story up - something to sow a seed in the mind of the reader, that when returned to later in the book, pulls a whole lot of threads tight together. And I must say, this prologue ends with one of the most devestatitng scenes I've had the pleasure to read. I knew from just these few pages, this was going to be quite a read.

As the pages went by, and I entered the world of David Blake, running his gangland empire from his Thailand compound, returning to the Newcastle underworld to sort out a thing or two, it occurred to me, although I was enjoying the book immensely, it was not my normal kind of reading. I'm very much a noir fan, and my reading, and my writing, tends to lead me in the direction of broken people making their way through the shadows of their broken lives. Don't get me wrong, THE DAMAGE is full of broken people - but it's slick read, a class act. If I had to put my finger on it, I'd say it was almost a thriller. And saying THE DAMAGE is more a thriller than a noir book is not to say the characters are shallow. They're not. Not by a long way.

David Blake is a complex individual. Despite being the head of a drug empire employing some of the nastiest scrotes this side of the Scottish border, he is vulnerable and he is thoughtful. At one point in the book, he is openly frightened. Okay, so he has the propensity for extreme violence as well, but as a reader I liked him. I also liked his two right-hand men - Kinane and Palmer. Thoughtful, yet capable of the most extreme violence, both.

But Linskey's characters are never as clear cut as even that. There are no Martina Cole cardboard cut-outs at the end of this man's pen.

There is a scene almost painful in it's telling where one of the henchmen decries the actions of his boss in the rubbing out of a rival. So well written was it, I found myself wincing at every word, slowing down as I read, feeling the henchman's confusion and angst.

So, I was reading a thriller. And loving it. What struck me most was how the intricate plot never once seemed out of the control of the writer. Reading THE DAMAGE is to read a writer in full control of his pen. And that, that to me is worth the admission money alone.

The world of David Blake is violent and complex, a man trying to keep his empire from collapsing inwards. We hear his plans, his regrets, his fears, and his justifications. The chapters are short and punchy, and they fly by. And then, about half way through the book, another narrator takes over - just for one, tiny chapter. For just a few pages, we see the world through the eyes of one of Blake's crew. It's a risk. And, for me, it shows what a class writer Howard Linskey is. Just that one chapter elevates this book into the clear blue sky. Like I said, when you are as much in control of your pen as Howard Linskey is, you can do what you want.

From Thailand to Newcastle, the bodycount rises, from Newcastle to Thailand, it rises again, and as we hurtle towards the end, I feared for David Blake. That's right. I feared for a man who had committed, and sanctioned, the killing of his rivals almost without a thought. A man that had brutally murdered his dear lady's dad, The fact I feared for him - me, a born and bred lifelong pacifist - is the biggest testament to the writing ability of Howard Linskey.

Brilliant stuff.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Drop it and be Damaged, 27 May 2012
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This review is from: The Damage (David Blake Book 2) (Kindle Edition)
The Drop was a master class in crime fiction, set amidst the gang culture prevalent in many actual UK cities. The Damage continues where the Drop left off; yet if David (now top dog) thinks things are on the up, he is sadly mistaken. For what is blindingly obvious to the reader is that this man, who likes to live on the edge of gang life, is now so up to his neck in it, emotionally and 'politically', that he is about to be damaged. A brilliant and biting second novel from a man whose life script suggests there is far more to come. If you are reading this without having read the Drop or the Damage, do yourself a favour and read them both. I admit to being a fan of this very good north-east English writer who is at the near-top of his game just now. I say near-top, as I haven't yet read the third in the series...can't wait.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Score 100% 2 out of 2 so far, 15 May 2012
By 
Kenneth Taylor (Essex, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Damage (David Blake Book 2) (Kindle Edition)
I read the first Howard Linskey book without any thought as to it's quality.
I read "A LOT" and it was just another read. I was gripped forom the first chapter.
This second book continues from the first and the characterisations still stand out as real people. The storyline is strong and the plot held me from start to finish.
I would strongly recommend reading both the Drop and The Damage.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 24 July 2014
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This review is from: The Damage (David Blake Book 2) (Kindle Edition)
I really like the idea behind the plot and enjoyed this and the previous novel.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Intelligent Gangster Action, 25 Oct 2013
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This review is from: The Damage (David Blake Book 2) (Kindle Edition)
I found The Damage to be a thoroughly entertaining novel. The author could have chosen to bring wall-to-wall violence to this gangster tale and it wouldn't have been out of place, he didn't and the story was richer for the suggestion of it. Don't get me wrong, there is violent action but the most chilling scene in this book had no violence whatsoever. David Blake uses his brain to achieve his goals and was quite a sympathetic character, for a gangster. Howard Linskey has created a three dimensional character in Blake, a solid character who, if he doesn't meet a bloody end, I will enjoy following.

The Damage is quite a convoluted novel with a lot of detail and plenty of character names to follow, but like all good novels, it flows nicely and each revelation leaves you hungry for the next. Linskey concludes his plotlines intelligently and you never feel cheated by a short cut. A great read that has left me hooked and yearning for more of Linskey's realistic and gritty fiction.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars local hero, 17 July 2013
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This review is from: The Damage (David Blake Book 2) (Kindle Edition)
very good read with a believable story line. plus I like to read a story set in an area I recognise.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 2 Aug 2014
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good read, well written and set near where I live
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 9 Nov 2014
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This review is from: The Damage (David Blake Book 2) (Kindle Edition)
Kindle download.
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The Damage (David Blake Book 2)
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