- Paperback: 416 pages
- Publisher: Sphere (16 Jan. 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0751549460
- ISBN-13: 978-0751549461
- Product Dimensions: 13 x 2.8 x 19.5 cm
- Average Customer Review: 100 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 266,764 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Next to Die (Joe & Sam Parker 1) Paperback – 16 Jan 2014
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Down and dirty authenticity reeks from every page - the smell of the cells, the artificiality of court appearances, the intensity of the investigation - all helping to make this hypnotic, troubling crime writing with a superb villain and a distinctive atmosphere. (Daily Mail)
Pacey and packed with atmosphere thanks to author Neil White's day job as a practicing criminal lawyer. (Irish Independent)
Compulsive but disturbing...it's the first in a new series and we can't wait for the next instalment. (Bella Magazine)
No.1 bestselling Kindle author Neil White makes his Sphere debut with an unforgettable thriller that pits good against evil and brother against brother.See all Product description
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The two brothers who are on the opposite side of the fence, one is a policeman, trying to lock up the baddies, and the other brother a defence lawyer, who gets them off!!! What a mix.
However, the ending was well written and it all came to a climax, with a hint that business still may not be finished.
Im going to read the other two in the series and I'll keep you posted.
The books centres on Ronnie Bagley, a suspect accused of murdering his wife and child. A suspect that lands in the lap of Joe and has Sam shaking his head at his actions. Also, running alongside is the backstory of Ellie, the boys' sister who had been brutally murdered some years previously. A murder that has left deep and long lasting repercussions on the whole family, as one would expect. What plays out is a thrilling tale of cat and mouse as the body count mounts up. I should note that the author, Neil While, is a criminal lawyer himself and it is obvious throughout that little details that come to the fore are of someone who knows the 'business'. The books is well written with good descriptiveness of what Lancashire has to offer, be it weather, the rolling moors or the two up two down housing on narrow cobbled streets. It's all there in stark reality but not depressingly so.
It all rolls along at a good pace and though admittedly I did see who was behind the murders, it didn't detract from the breathless, speedy, completely thrilling end that I raced to.
This is a good read told in more than a good way. So much so, I went straight onto the next one, The Death Collector.
When Ronnie Bagley requests Joe Parker defend him against charges of murdering his wife and baby, Joe comes running. He likes a challenge, and winning murder cases brings a lawyer notoriety. Elsewhere Sam is asked by the powers that be to spy on his brother, to try and find out anything that can ensure Ronnie’s conviction. Add to that a string of seemingly linked murders throughout Manchester and the Parker brothers have got their hands very much full.
Author, Neil White is a lawyer by day, crime fiction writer by night. He knows exactly what he’s writing about and his experience comes through in every chapter. But this isn't a novel of tedious legal jargon which requires a reader wade through it. It’s small, beautifully observed details which paint legal scenes so brilliantly; outside of court lawyers are wearing smart, tailored suits, but defendants are dressed in cheap suits a couple of sizes too big for them.
There is another layer to proceedings as well: Ellie Parker. Joe and Sam’s younger sister raped and murdered on her way back from school fifteen years ago. Her brothers still feel immense guilt at not being able to save their little sister, and her memory taints everything. It’s this aspect of the book which supplies the emotional grunt, and the murder mystery which provides the addictiveness. Superb stuff.
Plotwise this is a busy book with lots going on and I felt that Mr White cast his net too wide and it resulted in a lack of depth. This is equally apparent in the characterisation - I didn't feel I got to know Sam and Joe so it was difficult to get immersed in the book and live it with them. This is not a bad book it just didn't hold my attention particularly well.
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