This wee debut novel seems to be the beginning of a wee series. The plot and investigation itself is a wee bit week. The characters have potential to develop and I hope they do, because it is an interesting wee hypothesis and has the potential to be a wee interesting series.
But, this wee book has far to many wee words written in the wee vernacular. The people of Glasgow do not talk like Rab C Nesbit. The ‘music’ of the accent is the key to the reader’s comfort, we do not need the colloquial spelling. We know the book is set in Glasgow, we do not need to wade through all the winsnae, mibbi, whit, tae, cannae dae it, disnae, polis, naw, on and on it goes. This holds up the pace and the enjoyment of the novel. I haven’t heard the word “numpty” (twice in three paragraphs) in many, many wee years.
The story opens with two wee boys trying a bit housebreaking. They find the owner of the house dead, hanging from a beam.
DI Kat Wheeler is a good wee character and the characterisation is excellent. She is at the theatre when she receives the call to the murder scene. She and DI Ross, another good wee character, investigate the brutal murder of Educational Psychologist James Gilmore. There seems to be no reason as to why he was murdered. Wheeler discovers nothing at his house or anywhere else to suggest Gilmore is anything other than the quiet loner his colleagues describe.
Wee Kat’s sister is harassing her with texts, her son wee Jason, is at Glasgow University. He does not communicate with his over protective mother.
When wee Kat finds him, Jason he is buying drugs with his wee girlfriend. Later this wee girlfriend is found dead, fallen from a window after an overdose
One of the local crime bosses is watching the investigation into the murder of James Gilmore and seems to be making sure that the perpetrator wont be found.
Wheeler has to accept the outcome of the case, but the wee lassie doubts that justice will be done.