As you’ll know from previous reviews on Steven Suttie’s novel’s, I’m a big fan. I’ve not absolutely loved every book in the series (One Man Crusade remains my favourite and I think it always will) but I’ve always enjoyed reading them. They speak to the part of me that wants to shout at the television every time the government announces more austerity cuts or fails to respond appropriately to a national crisis.
The DCI Miller novels never fail to highlight a political hot potato and show how it affects normal people in society. In this case, it’s the effect of gambling addiction on today’s society and the lack of appetite by the government to put things in place to protect people from getting themselves into a financial mess, largely due to the revenue that they would lose.
As always, Suttie shows how the government will always choose financial gain over public interest, in a way that engages the reader and informs them on political issues that they may not have been fully aware of.
The great thing about this series is that alongside the familiar SCIU team, headed by DCI Andy Miller, there are always characters that are victims of social injustices that tug at the heart-strings. He also shows the effect of the media on public and police opinion, adding to the journalistic feel to the structure of the novel.
Ever present in a Suttie novel is the portrayal of how the reduction in police numbers across the country has affected crime levels and the failure of police officers to respond to reports of crimes in a timely enough manner to catch the perpetrators or even link crimes to one another until it is too late. Suttie is well informed and knows just how to generate a feeling of anger in the reader at the dangerous effects of this government’s austerity cuts.
If you’re a die-hard Tory supporter, this book isn’t for you (although it may give you some food for thought), but it’s a great addition to a fantastic series of novels and I look forward to the next one.