24 of 31 people found the following review helpful
Glad to breathe (clean air) by the end,
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This review is from: The Unquiet Heart (Danny McRae Series Book 2) (Kindle Edition)
This novel by Gordon Ferris seems to tick all the right boxes in the crime/thriller/espionage genres. I really enjoyed "The Hanging Shed", followed it with "Truth Dare Kill" and this one, hoping that he would stay as good or better.
It has some good ingredients: the hero is a private detective working in London at the end of the Second World War (in spite of being brain damaged by enemy troops before being held in Dachau concentration camp and having occasional serious memory lapses because of this). One would imagine that his ability to function would be impaired but, rather incredibly, it doesn't seem to hold him back from solving crimes for friends and doing some serious gang busting in London.
Unfortunately, it would appear that, on every second page of "The Unquiet Heart", the author feels obliged to diverge from the story to tell us about somebody somewhere lighting a cigarette. If they don't actually light one for themselves, they light it for someone else, like the hero of the story lighting a fag for the lady he's got his eye on.
If there's not a "lighting-up" scene, there's a description of smoke-filled rooms in its place so that, by the time I'd got to the end of the story, I was really glad to get some `virtual' fresh air in my lungs because I felt that I'd read the book inside a chimney and was really choked by the amount of waffle about smoking that was being used to pad-out a good enough story. One star off there.
The constant smoking was just an annoyance; perhaps the author is addicted and imagines that everyone else is too. However, I know enough about serious brain damage of the kind ascribed to the lead character to know that he wouldn't be capable of being a one-man crime fighting machine. He is much more likely to be epileptic (and this is hinted at by his frequent consultations with his neurologist). Another star dropped because of this, since it's just too big an issue to be overlooked and makes him less believable.
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Initial post: 8 May 2016, 18:00:10 BST
I agree with you about the constant "lighting up" passages in the book. I had a virtual sore throat breathing in the virtual smoke from countless cigarettes by the end!
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