Hardcover: 432 pages
Publisher: Little, Brown
28 Jan. 2016
If you are looking for a crime thriller that is guaranteed to keep you reading until the wee small hours, Chris Brookmyre’s 12th Jack Parlabane novel Black Widow is just what you’ve been looking for. Packed with pace, intrigue and fantastically well drawn characters, Brookmyre is a novelist whose craft goes unparalleled.
Diana Jager is clever, strong and successful, a skilled surgeon and fierce campaigner via her blog about sexism. Yet it takes only hours for her life to crumble when her personal details are released on the internet as revenge for her writing. Then she meets Peter. He's kind, generous, and knows nothing about her past: the second chance she's been waiting for. Within six months, they are married. Within six more, Peter is dead in a road accident, a nightmare end to their fairytale romance. But Peter's sister Lucy doesn't believe in fairytales, and tasks maverick reporter Jack Parlabane with discovering the dark truth behind the woman the media is calling Black Widow.
What Brookmyre has truly mastered is the ability to take his readers down one path only for it to suddenly skew in the most unexpected direction. This results in each page being a nerve jangling experience as our pscyches are constantly toyed with. This mainly derives from the troupe of exhilarating characters he has created, not least of which being Parlabane himself who is hewn from the finest literary marble to stand proud and tall amongst any of his fictional peers.
Added to all of this is, naturally, a terrific and at times disturbing story that will have you questioning everything you see read so joyfully online.
The Black Widow, in short, is a fantastic read that will more than wile away these long, cold, dark winter nights and leave you breathless at its culmination.