With thanks to @ZooloosBT, @AlexKaneWriter & @Herabooks for a place on the tour and the opportunity to read and review this book.
Blood’s thicker than water… and they’re not afraid to spill it
Donnie Black – charming, successful… and utterly terrifying, he rules the Glasgow underworld with an iron fist. Nothing – or no one – will stop him and he’s not afraid to get his hands dirty to grow his fortune.
Layla Black – she’s been married to Donnie for twenty years, enjoying the lavish world he has worked hard to create. But behind the perfect image Layla is crumbling, numbing her pain with alcohol. But Layla doesn’t know the secrets Donnie keeps – and the truth will send her spiralling.
Louise Bellshaw – she’s young, beautiful and innocent. She’s charmed by Donnie’s sweet words, and believes she’s found true love. But Louise doesn’t know her dream man has plans that will turn her life into a nightmare.
As the three collide, no one can predict how family ties will turn to bloodshed. Because you’ll do anything for the ones you love, won’t you?
A dark, twisty and totally gripping thriller set in the heart of Glasgow gangland – fans of Mandasue Heller and Kimberley Chambers won’t be able to put this down
I was completely gripped from the prologue which gives us a glimpse of the dark world we are about to step into. It raises so many questions, and stays in the back of your mind as the pages turn.
The story starts when the characters are young and we quickly see Donnie’s terrible nature. We learn they are a group of school friends involved in gang life where fear prevails, and any inclination to do the right thing is met with a violent reminder of who’s in charge and what’s expected of them.
I loved that the story’s told from multiple points of view so we really get to know the characters on a deep level. There’s incredible character development, they feel like genuine people, and each character elicited strong feelings from me.
Donnie was born into the life but fully embraces it. He enjoys destroying people and has no empathy whatsoever. He only cares about power, money, and control, and is written so brilliantly – he’s a truly disturbing, cruel, and sinister character!
Layla, Donnie’s wife, drinks to escape the trauma she’s suffered and the reality of her life. She is totally dependent on Donnie emotionally and financially and it seems a hopeless, desperate situation.
Louise unwittingly gets drawn into Donnie’s world and becomes so involved that she trusts him implicitly, with no idea in whose hands she’s placing her life. It gets you thinking as we never really know someone, just the person they present themselves to be, and Donnie’s all about presenting himself as the good guy!
The Barrhouse Firm is made up of Kevin, Cammy and a few others from their younger days. They no longer want to be part of Donnie’s disturbing plans and break away to build their own enterprise. But once you’re in there’s no getting out!
As the story unravels we see how one wrong choice can set someone on a path they can’t turn back from, the impact of one person’s actions on everyone around them, and how every action has a reaction. The lives of the characters’ intertwine and influence each other in unexpected and undesirable ways. I could not stop reading, after each chapter ended I just had to know what was going to happen next!
At the heart of the story it explores how far you would go to protect the ones you love. It really gets you thinking about human nature, and how the lines can become blurred of what’s right and wrong. The moral compass becomes a bit skewed but if it’s for the right reason does that make it okay? It’s like the battling wolves proverb, the good and bad inside us, where the one that wins is the one we feed. This is definitely at play here where the choices made clearly shape who they become, but not everything is black and white and I loved the ambiguous grey shades!
Kane expertly draws us into this dark story and catapults the reader into a world of loyalty, betrayal, violence, secrets and lies. One minute it was emotional, and the next it gave me chills. There’s so many shocking twists I was on the edge of my seat wondering how it would play out! The final chapters were wow – what an ending to the tense, suspense filled ride we are taken on!
About the Author
Alex Kane is a psychological thriller writer who lives in Glasgow. She is a huge fan of the genre, with her favourite authors in the genre being Lisa Hall, BA Parisand Sarah Stovell. If she is not writing she can be found playing with her cat, reading, or drinking tea and/or gin (sometimes all of the above).
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