welcome to our book reviews and news page
recent publications and classic reads revisited
covering a wide range of genre, taste and style
please join in the discussion
Monday, 14 December 2009
by Zoe Sharp
First Drop is the first book in the thriller series featuring the heroine Charlie Fox, an ex-army sharp-shooter turned private bodyguard. The story follows her first assignment as a close protection specialist for the teenage son of a wealthy American businessman. Needless to say, things start to go wrong very quickly...
After meeting the author at the Writers' Holiday at Caerleon, and listening to her give a very interesting talk about her life as a novelist, I was a little disappointed with this book.
Don't get me wrong, it's certainly a good thriller and has plenty of action and pace. The style was interesting too, a kind of sardonic "gum-shoe" dry humour. I liked this at first but it did get a little bit tired towards the end. The clipped, minimalist rendition of speech and thoughts began to grate and make me work harder to read it.
I had no difficulty with the plot, which rarely strayed from the linear. This was probably a result of the book being written in the first-person voice of Charlie, which gives the story a good flow but denies it any real complexity. I did not see all the plot twists coming but those that I did spot were telegraphed well in advance. In the end it did not matter too much because most of the other characters were vaguely "bad guys" anyway, even the ones who were not the ultimate criminals.
First Drop is available from St. Martin's Paperbacks, ISBN 978-0-312-93704-1.
Reviewed by Captain Black