Sunday, 3 February 2019

Book review : A Friend In Deed - G.D. Harper

The opening page of A Friend In Deed tells us that the story is set in London, a few years from now. This immediately had me feeling nervous, as I was expecting the impromptu appearance of power-crazed robot leaders or hordes of marauding werewolves or zombies, but my unease turned out to be unfounded - the only difference between now and then is that a new populist political party, Act Now!, has taken power in Britain. 

Duncan Jones, a political journalist and blogger, finds himself pushed out of his job at a national newspaper and turns to investigative reporting instead. On one of his regular visits to an art gallery, Duncan bumps into a beautiful, young Ukrainian woman called Tanya and a friendship develops. Still working as a freelance, he links up with a hacker to uncover some big stories that he can sell to the papers, and Tanya ends up helping him out, unwittingly giving him a lead for his first story, then helping with translating. As he follows the story through, uncovering that Act Now! has been funded by the Russians, he comes into contact with various sources in Russia, taking a particularly nerve-wracking trip there to uncover some new leads. He soon discovers that nothing is as he first thought.

It's a tense read, with the reader never really knowing what will happen to Duncan if he uncovers too many uncomfortable truths. The world of politics seems to have gone crazy lately, with Trump and Brexit throwing up so many notions of impending world doom and uncertainty that secret political unions and betrayal seem quite possible, if not probable. The scary stories going on on Russian soil in the book seemed overly dramatic - I found it hard to believe that such things still go on in this day and age - but maybe that's just wishful thinking ! The characters are quite complex and imperfectly perfect, which helps make it all quite believable.

This is the second book in a trilogy, with the first part - Love's Long Road - set in the 1970's and telling the story of Duncan's friend, Bobby. Bobby does put in a few appearances in this novel and there are a few references to past events, which were presumably the content of that first novel. However, the book can be enjoyed as a standalone novel too. The third part of the story, Silent Money, will pick up on another character who puts in an appearance at the end of the book (and, presumably, in the first novel too) and will focus on life as a crime lord in 1970's Britain.

It's an original and enjoyable book series, that will appeal to fans of crime fiction, political thrillers and a damn good read !

star rating : 4/5

RRP : £9.99

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Troubador Publishing (18 Oct. 2018)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1789016800
  • ISBN-13: 978-1789016802

Disclosure : I received a review copy of the book.


  1. Sounds good

  2. I don't know how you find the time to read and review so many books, Cheryl! Thanks for this one. Sounds accessible for me.


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