THE SITE FOR DIE HARD CRIME & THRILLER FANS
iBookKindlePrintReviews

Shatter The Bones

2 Mins read

Written by Stuart MacBride – With the seventh book in the Logan McRae series, Stuart MacBride delivers another unrelenting, incredibly bleak read, whilst also being spell-bindingly brilliant!

The story centres on the kidnapping of singing sensations from the reality TV show Britain’s Next Big Star, Alison Gregory and her six-year-old daughter Jenny. McRae investigates but runs into problems when no evidence of any kind is available, other than a ransom note explaining that the two will be killed unless money is raised within 14 days. Donations pour in from concerned viewers and fans, but it’s not until something more unusual arrives in the post that the investigation ramps up. With massive media and public interest, and increasing pressure from them, the race is on to find the kidnappers before it’s too late. Alongside this, Logan McRae must deal with a drug deal gone wrong, which has personal ramifications.

MacBride is on form here, even if the book is slower paced than usual. Having only read one McRae novel previously, I was a little worried I’d be behind the story in places, however the author seems to approach each book with this in mind, meaning I wasn’t lost reading this one. Some backstory was missing, but this didn’t detract from overall plot of the book. Having read MacBride’s other standalones, I was familiar with his style of writing, and Shatter The Bones doesn’t disappoint.

Shatter The Bones is not a novel for the faint hearted though. It’s very dark in places, unafraid of taking the reader into the depths of despairing situations. Moving at a slower pace has allowed MacBride to bring to life the city of Aberdeen in a way that is on a par with Rankin’s Edinburgh, or Billingham‘s London series.

Another facet is his use of humour. Deliciously dark one-liners are peppered throughout, without detracting from the story. The characters are all multi-layered, believable (if perhaps in some unbelievable situations) and beautifully flawed. MacBride is incredibly adept at slowly ramping up the tension, with a great twist towards the end.

Overall, an excellent read. I’d highly recommend any of MacBride’s books to anyone interested in something towards the darker end of the crime fiction spectrum. Shatter The Bones – and that title is pertinent – is not easy to stomach in some places; it’s violent and unyielding, yet it’s fantastic writing. MacBride is becoming one of the great British crime writers.

HarperCollins
Print/Kindle/iBook
£4.79

CFL Rating: 5 Stars


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related posts
Features

Watch Dark Travellers – Publishing Scotland's film about Tartan noir

Crime Fiction Lover is pleased to bring you Dark Travellers, a 22-minute film that’s perfect if you love your Scottish crime fiction. It’s been a huge year for crime writing in Scotland, thanks in no small part to the publication of The Dark Remains from…
Book Club

The Dark Remains by Ian Rankin and William McIlvanney

This novel was one of the publishing events of 2021. Ian Rankin has completed William McIlvanney’s unfinished manuscript of a prequel to the Laidlaw trilogy – the series credited with establishing the Tartan noir subgenre. (If you’re new to Laidlaw, you can read more about…
iBookKindlePrintReviews

The Dark Remains by William McIlvanney and Ian Rankin

Laidlaw’s first big case. When William McIlvanney died in 2015, the importance of his Laidlaw novels to Scottish crime fiction was just beginning to be properly recognised. He’s now rightly seen as the godfather of Tartan noir. Intriguingly, McIlvanney left behind a half-written manuscript for…
Crime Fiction Lover