“Country of the Blind” is the first novel of Christopher Brookmyre’s that I have read and I can say with a great degree of certainty that after thoroughly enjoying this pacey and exciting thriller that I will be coming back for more. The book features the exploits of maverick journalist Jack Parlabane and apparently this likeable figure first appeared in one of Brookmyre’s earlier books “Quite Ugly one Morning” however for those like myself who haven’t (yet) read this earlier book this later book is perfectly enjoyable in its own right. Set against the mounting dissatisfaction at the ineffective and over self-indulgent Tory government of John Major all hell breaks loose when Dutch media mogul Roland Voss is found murdered in a rambling country house in Scotland. Next to Voss’s body is that of his murdered wife and their two slain bodyguards lay outside their room. Almost immediately four likely lads are arrested for the crime including former burglar Thomas McInnes, his son Paul and a very strange guy who likes to be known as Spammy. The one sensible thing Thomas has done is lodged a letter with a lawyer before the crime has taken place. When this lawyer, Nicole Carrow, turns up at the Police station demanding to see her client the last thing she probably expected would be to have an attempt made on her life within hours. As I say the book has a fantastic and intriguing storyline with lots of plots and sub-plots but for all this it never gets bogged down in detail or gets too clever for its own good. The writing is exciting and keeps the action bowling along at a cracking pace. The only fault I can pick with it is that Brookmyre does at points “write in Scottish” and I’d much rather imagine these accents than try to figure out what the characters are actually saying. The characters are great fun and the writing is extremely humorous at times. There’s also a goodly portion of political commentary along the way which probably won’t agree with all readers but certainly for those of a left of centre persuasion it will be both poignant and amusing. I can only really really recommend this book and I will definitely be trying one of his other books very soon.