If you’re looking for a cracking crime novel to read then I can highly recommend Gallowstree Lane by Kate London. Published earlier this month through Corvus, it kept my attention from start to finish.
Gallowstree Lane is the third novel in the series featuring DI Sarah Collins and DC Lizzie Griffiths who wok for the Metropolitan Police Force. I’ve not read the first two books yet, but this one stands up well in its own right. Yes it would be helpful to know the full history of the main characters, but you can guess enough as you read the book, and it didn’t hinder my enjoyment.
Set in London amidst an area where gang culture, drugs and prostitution is prevalent we are introduced to Spencer Cardoso, a teenage boy who is dying on the street after being stabbed in an altercation. It’s a story we see all to often on the TV these days. His best friend Ryan Kennedy witnesses the stabbing but leaves his friend to die. Why?
As the murder investigation gets underway, it becomes clear that the characters involved are also subjects in a long-term undercover operation called Perseus. The operation is looking at the Eardsley Blud gang and is trying to bring down it’s leader, Shakiel Oliver.
DI Sarah Collins is trying to uncover Ryan’s identity in the Cardoso murder case as he must have seen the killer. Whilst we follow her efforts we also come across DC Lizzie Griffiths, who’s juggling single parenthood with a baby and her challenging career. When she arrests Ryan for an assault she becomes aware that he’s somehow involved in a larger operation. She ends up being seconded to the Perseus operation which is run by her former boss, and father to her child, DI Kieran Shaw.
As Sarah gets closer to the truth with her investigation, alarm bells start ringing and the whole operation is in jeopardy.
The characters in Gallowstree Lane are very believable and the stories and characters are cleverly interwoven. I really enjoyed the plot and wanted to find out how the drama would unfold. You could see how youngsters get drawn into gang life and how that impacts on their future. It’s a gritty tale and has left me wanting to catch up with the previous novels in the series now.
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