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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Her best
I have read and enjoyed all Manda Scott's crime novels but this is by far the best. In fact it is one of the best crime novels I have ever read. Scott's prose style is strong, her characters are all well rounded and fascinating, she has a good sense of location and she is a master of suspense and drama. This is the only crime novel I have read three times (and counting) -...
Published on 4 Jan 2004 by Danielle Hall

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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Probably the worst book I have ever read
I cannot believe the praise for this book, it is absolutely awful. I feel I have to add my review as I would have bought this book myself after reading the below. The book starts OK, although is very confusing and within a chapter or two just becomes ridiculous. I didn't realise under cover police officers would actually become prostitutes and drug addicts in their...
Published on 4 Jun 2008 by Suzy Tops 71


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Her best, 4 Jan 2004
By 
Danielle Hall - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: No Good Deed (Paperback)
I have read and enjoyed all Manda Scott's crime novels but this is by far the best. In fact it is one of the best crime novels I have ever read. Scott's prose style is strong, her characters are all well rounded and fascinating, she has a good sense of location and she is a master of suspense and drama. This is the only crime novel I have read three times (and counting) - even when you know who dunnit it is still well worth reading again.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A well written thriller with twists, 13 May 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: No Good Deed (Hardcover)
A taut well written thriller.
A change from Manda Scott's earlier offerings but if you are a fan of her previous ones, don't let this put you off. From page one you are taken on a journey through the scottish underworld with emotion and skill.
The attention to detail is gratifying and a lot of research has obviously gone into this book. In my opinion, this should be trabslated to TV... but then I like the genre!
I hope there is a sequel.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Gritty and thoughtful, more depth than average, 18 July 2008
This review is from: No Good Deed (Paperback)
This is one of the better crime novels I've read, and the reason for that is that the author has stepped off the beaten track to produce something a little darker, grittier and less black-and-white than normal.
The storyline is relatively simple - a cop in Glasgow is working undercover in a drugs and prostitution racket to try to ensnare the brutal ringleader when her cover is busted. She avoids execution with the help of an emotionally stunted nine year old boy whose addict/prostitute mother has overdosed and subsequently flees to the highlands with him. A game of cat-and-mouse ensues alongside the emotional recovery of the woman and boy.
As another reviewer has said, this is not a comfortable moral tale and you will have to reconcile yourself to the questionnable morals and behaviours, but I think the complex motivations and emotional responses are part of the strength of the book. The author has in my opinion done a marvellous job with the characterisation of the leading two characters, with some other notable cast members in support. It is perhaps (and necessarily) only the villain who is underdone.
So a very respectable effort all round - well written, involving, engaging and with unexpected depth of character.
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5.0 out of 5 stars but so good, 10 Aug 2012
This review is from: No Good Deed (Paperback)
I love Manda Scott's writing style. It is a thread that captivates me through each book, from one book to another. 'No Good Deed' is a stark, gritty and dark drama, that the, almost poetic, writing style softens. Undercover cop stories are not necessarily what I look for, but I was curious. The more I was reading this one, the more intrigued I felt. The characters were the right mix of complex psychology you actually meet in daily life. They were likable, believable, totally imperfect, and can inspire respect.
Orla MacLeod is the central character, who has to make choices of various sorts, while taking on the responsibility of nine-year-old Jamie, a child who has seen more than a child should see and whose life as a consequence is in danger.
I am so glad I gave 'No Good Deed' a second chance (I wasn't into it when it was first published), as this time it gave me food for thought, something I always look for in a book
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4.0 out of 5 stars No Good Deed, 6 Jun 2012
By 
Clare O'Beara - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: No Good Deed (Paperback)
Not a comfortable read, this thriller involves so many suspect practices by Glasgow undercover police, and downright stupid ones occasionally, that it is best to suspend disbelief and read it as complete invention. Once that is done, the gritty unpleasantness of the first crisis-ridden chapter is such that we want to keep reading to see how the characters get out of this situation. Certainly we don't need much more convincing that being a drug-addled prostitute is not a nice way of life. The sheer brutality of the criminals when they capture, torture and kill an undercover officer seems overdone - why would they bother? And the female detective, Orla McLeod, shouldn't need this as an incentive to arrest the drug lords; that is what she is being paid for, after all.
The saving of the whole story is the silent nine-year-old boy Jamie rescued from the criminals' flat by Orla - once he has rescued her. Jamie can't trust anyone but gradually begins to trust the crew of detectives who look after him (not Social Services?) and goes into hiding in the snowy Highlands where he learns to talk a little and absorbs lessons about stalking and tracking. The complete contrast with his early life makes him a very sympathetic character as he begins to blossom.
A tangent involving faking computer records and a master criminal's seizing a hacker and forcing her to hack for him is much less convincing and comes across as padding the story. Perhaps the author couldn't think of another way that the detectives and Jamie would be found.
Some of the writing is excellent and brings scenes and people vividly to life. This book is often compared to Ian Rankin's Rebus series and is a good fit for grittiness but Rankin is a whole lot more realistic about policing.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Another brilliant read, 8 Sep 2014
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This review is from: No Good Deed (Kindle Edition)
Excellent read. Manda Scott writes so well - really feel you know the characters. She draws you into the story and keeps your attention right to the end. So sorry when it was finished.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars As good as rankin, 21 Feb 2002
By 
P. Dale (Upminster Essex) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: No Good Deed (Paperback)
After reading all of Ian Rankins books i have found someone else who matches up to his savage and detailed look into the scottish underworld. Manda Scott takes you from the Glasgow slums to the highlands with breathtaking ease. This book kept me up for three nights i just had to keep reading the next chapter.
I hope her next book will be another Orla Mcleod stunner.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars HOW FAR IS TOO FAR TO KEEP A PROMISE??, 14 Jan 2002
This review is from: No Good Deed (Paperback)
Not having read MANDA SCOTT before - or RANKIN, to whom she has been likened - I was uncertain what to expect.
However, my trepidation was without foundation. From the confusing, hectic and gruesome opening, in a Glasgow tenement, via the idyllic beauty of the Scottish Highlands, Scott has constructed a taut, nerve-jangling tour de force. Whether describing lowlifes in Glasgow's worst slum areas - notably the Mick Belker-like Andy, who is so far undercover as to be positively subterranean - or the sweeping grandeur of the equally brutal Highlands, Scott takes us on a journey of discovery. Via the noble savage, Murdo, and the unreadable Strang, we are drawn inevitably to the enigmatic Orla, ostensible heroine of the book. When her righteous quest for justice begins to encompass the very crimes she set out to avenge, she must question her motives. And whether the promise she made a nine-year-old boy is worth betraying the ghosts of her violent past.
A wee gem, and no mistake. I anticipate Scott's next with bated breath.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absolutely gripping story, 15 Jun 2001
This review is from: No Good Deed (Hardcover)
Although it is a break from her usual style, I think this book surpasses the promise of her earlier work. It is extremely well thought out, the characters are believable, the surroundings can be "seen" from the descriptions, the plot is just complicated enough without being so convoluted that you lose track. It is really difficult to put the book down between chapters.......always a sign of a good read!
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Probably the worst book I have ever read, 4 Jun 2008
This review is from: No Good Deed (Paperback)
I cannot believe the praise for this book, it is absolutely awful. I feel I have to add my review as I would have bought this book myself after reading the below. The book starts OK, although is very confusing and within a chapter or two just becomes ridiculous. I didn't realise under cover police officers would actually become prostitutes and drug addicts in their quest to bring down a crime lord, ludicrous! I could be wrong but when an operation goes drastically wrong shouldn't all agents be pulled out, not left to carry on selling themselves on street corners to then be slaughtered? The writers' prose is laughable, I've never heard a dogs tail described as 'a tapping extension of his spine'. I felt like I was reading the most pretentious load of nonsense from someone who obviously tried to balance the 'beauty' of her words with the grit of the storyline, she failed dismally. There is also a mute child in the book, who is called the 'youth' throughout, his name is Jamie, whom Orla and Murdo(?) kidnap and change the national databases to avoid detection, as I didn't finish the book I have no idea where this story line was going.

Although I bought this book from a charity shop for £1, I still feel robbed. I had to throw this book in the bin, such was my utter disgust.
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No Good Deed by Manda Scott
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