Gavin F (gavluvsga) wrote in 50bookchallenge,
Gavin F

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Book #32: To Make a Killing by Michael Crawshaw

Number of pages: 294

A thriller that involves bankers getting murdered seems incredibly apt considering the current financial climate in Britain, and this is what this book is all about.

A banker drowns after falling from the top of Tower Bridge, and this is at first dismissed as a suicide, until two more suspicious deaths occur, and detectives start to suspect foul play, despite officials believing it to be coincidence. Central to all of this is Mickey Summer, who outwardly is a joker, but is written in such a way that you suspect that this is all an act to hide a large amount of emotional pain.

It turns out that Mickey and the dead bankers were all about to receive a large bonus payout, which increases each time one of the payees dies, and detective start to suspect that one of the bankers is killing off their colleagues in order to increase their winnings.

My initial feeling were that the apparent central motivation for the murders was very clichéd, and also that the story moved quite slowly, as well as the fact that there seemed to be quite a lot of business speak that got annoying after a while. Many of the characters seemed a bit two-dimensional, although there was an attempt to give the detective featured in the story some background by including his family at one point.

However, the character of Mickey Summer, who was very well fleshed-out, portrayed as a loving son and husband, whose marriage was about to go into meltdown, and with a lot of skeletons in his closet, mostly related to his father having been arrested for accidentally killing a teacher. A character that could have proved very annoying ended up being easy to root for and sympathise with. I also liked the fact that writer Michael Crawshaw involved real-life events, including the recent Occupy London protests.

Overall, I thought it was an average book, which made for an enjoyable mystery, but it felt a bit too easy to work out the identity of the killer.

Next book: A Fresh Start (John Chapman)
Tags: book review, british, current events, fiction, in the media, murder mystery, thriller

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