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I would recommend this audible book. The author does not dodge issues of racism and interfaith infighting alongside a riveting powerful story that has numerous unexpected twists. New and refreshing. Wasn't sure about the narration at first but soon felt it was an integral part of my enjoyment of this debut novel. Thanks AA Dhand and Muzz Khan
12 of 13 people found this review helpful
I’ve read a lot of new authors in the past year or so and when I noticed this one being trailed by Audible it looked like a must read. Having grown up in a very multi-cultural town and seen and experienced racism and its effects at close hand this book seemed bound to appeal to me – assuming that the author made his characters seem real!
AA Dhand has done just that pulling together a story and set of characters that very much reflect my experiences of how prejudice is wide-spread and multi-faceted. How it normally exists in a bi-lateral fashion between any two groups rather than one-way as is often portrayed. A Sikh married to a Muslim in a city where right wing parties are active is always going to provide rich fodder for a story. Dhand gets stuck right into it, I enjoyed the Virdee character as well as the contrasting spirituality of his wife. This mix of levels of faith and charming superstition reflect many of my own experiences. It brings out a fascinating complexity and sophistication in the character relationships and their motivations.
Of course this book had to be more than just a stroll through Bradford’s problems and faith groups. Billed as a hard-hitting detective story it really delivers, the plot is very good and the violence and threat level of the characters is excellent. Bashir in particular is a very strong character forged from the darkness. If anything I did think the “dark secret from the past coming back to haunt” motif was maybe a tad overdone but otherwise everything was clever and very well thought out.
I did find Muzz Khan’s narration a little difficult at first but he delivers the Asian accents with such obvious authenticity that once I got myself attuned I really enjoyed his performance.
I would recommend this. It is a very refreshing entry into the UK detective genre which delivers as a thriller and a piece of social commentary. I look forwards to reading more about Detective Harry Virdee and his adventures in the dark, gritty parts of Bradford in the future!
12 of 14 people found this review helpful