Wednesday 14 March 2012

Book review : Snapshot - Craig Robertson

Two years ago, I read Craig Robertson's debut novel, Random, and found some of it so graphic and gleefully violent that it made me - a hardened crime fiction reader - feel uncomfortable. I was therefore slightly wary when I plucked his latest novel, Snapshot, off my to-be-reviewed shelf and settled down to read it.

Well, I was pleasantly surprised, not to mention glued to the page, trying to make no noise at all as I turned the pages so I wouldn't wake up my slumbering hubby as I read way past my bedtime night after night ! Luckily it was the holidays !

The style of writing is classic Craig Robertson and I'd have recognised it as his work straight away. There's more blood than you'd find at a vampire convention and the body count rises more quickly than the donations total on Children in Need night, but this time it stays just the right side of my gore limit. Once again, we find a cleverly woven plot which keeps the reader guessing right up to the last minute. The boundaries between the good guys and the bad guys is again slightly blurred (Dexter Morgan has a lot to answer for !) which is one of the reasons it is so hard to guess the outcome. The influence of the press, who name the new serial killer the Dark Angel, is again evoked.

The plot follows DS Rachel Narey, who we discovered in Random, now having a secret fling with police photographer Tony Winter, a man who seems to get too great a kick out of taking photo of brutal murders. While Tony follows the serial killer, Rachel is on the case of a murdered prostitute, but their destinies will intertwine and roles will be weirdly inversed - the hunter becomes the hunted, the photographer becomes the criminal investigator, the bad guy becomes the public hero ...

Craig Robertson has a real gift for unearthing the hidden, darker side of Glasgow, figuratively - in the drug dealers, dirty cops and perverts hanging out in the red light district - but also literally, revealing a secret part of Glasgow that I'm sure many people are unaware of. (I certainly was !) 

Despite the horrors going on, the book also offers lots of dark humour, particularly in the banter between the different investigators, which acts as a pressure valve for the reader. I really enjoyed Snapshot so, if you were put off by the extreme violence of Random, give it a go. This novel left me convinced that Craig Robertson is a rising talent in the crime fiction genre who surely has many more cracking novels to be born from that deliciously twisted mind of his !

star rating : 4.5/5

RRP : £6.99

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Ltd (17 Feb 2011)
  • Language English
  • ISBN-10: 1847398812
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847398819

Other reviews you may be interested in :


1 comment:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...