Tuesday 29 November 2022


Synopsis/blurb ...

An honourable man in a dishonourable profession.

When Aidan Asher – right hand man to Liverpool gang boss Irvine King – counsels against a deal with drug lord Emir Ercan, he is pushed to the periphery of the organisation and detailed, along with his brother Neal, to babysit Valentyna, King’s latest girl.

When the deal goes south and King’s money disappears, Asher is brought back into the fold and ordered to retrieve the cash and exact retribution on the perpetrator.

Double crossed, pursued by Ercan’s men and discovering Neal plans to abscond to the continent with Valentyna, Aidan must decide where his loyalties lie – with King and with honour – or will blood prove thicker than water?

Mayhem on Merseyside and The Med! An ex-Military man serves as a loyal lieutenant to a big wheel gangster, until his brother throws a spanner in the works.

This one's a really enjoyable outing with multiple settings, criminal gangs at home and abroad, two brothers, a kept woman and a ganglord with ambition and a devious untrustworthy underling. Chuck in some serious Turkish drug dealers, feared and respected throughout Europe and it's a heady combustible mix.

Betrayal, lust, infidelity, schemes and plans, family, tested loyalties, money, power grabs, flight, conflict, resettlement, new opportunities, new enemies and eventually former friends reconnecting back in Liverpool.

I really liked the dynamics between Aidan and brother Neal. Aidan isn't too sure about Neal's love choice, Valentyna but blood is thicker than water. Money is taken, pride is wounded and Liverpool is soon too hot for the trio. A decamp to Spain seems to offer a chance for prolonging their life expectancy.  

Like flies attracted to shit, our trio soon find more bother abroad. I like the peripheral characters we cross paths with in Spain. We get a view of a not-so-idyllic lifestyle abroad amongst an ex-pat community, where muscle and power, influence and fear are the currency of the day. 

There's a sense of marking time in Spain, that the events they've fled will catch up with them one day. The present is temporary, the past will come calling and the future will be unpredictable.

I liked Aidan's tenacity, his strength of purpose, his background, with his time in the military equipping him with confidence and a sense of calm in the face of danger. I liked his loyalty to his brother and his sister living back home and not part of the 'life.' I enjoyed the situations and the serious scrapes he found himself in with his cohorts. I liked his intellect, his problem solving, his risk assessments and his abilities.

I enjoyed Valentyna's role in the drama. She's always seems to keep something back. There's a cunning and a secret side to her and a sense that she isn't totally trustworthy. She seems to possess an uncanny knack for falling into the brown stuff and coming up smelling of roses. She's one of life's survivors.  

I enjoyed the storyline with the twists David Siddall served up. Tension builds up to an inevitable reunion where you know things will explode and lives will be altered and ended. The only question being who survives?   

Very, very good.

4.5 stars from 5

David Siddall's work has been enjoyed before - A Man Alone - back in 2020. 

Read - September, 2022
Published - 2022
Page count - 347
Source - review copy from author
Format - PDF read on laptop

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