Chloe: Never Forget
An off-duty detective gunned down. A dead woman. A student missing, feared dead. And now, a former policeman in search of his past. All these people, dead or alive, have one thing in common. D.I. Carl Sant must discover what it is.
A series of cold-case enquiries leads D.I. Sant and his colleagues to investigate a botched assassination plot dating back to the 1980s. The deeper they dig into the case, the more secrets are revealed, including shocking connections to the infamous National Front.
Meanwhile, the memory of former P.C. Tanner, survivor of the assassination horror, is beginning to recover. Sant must find Tanner, and find out who is behind it all – before his superiors lose their rag and more lives are lost.
Dan Laughey is a lecturer at Leeds Beckett University where he teaches a course called ‘Youth, Crime and Culture’ among other things. He has written several books on the subject including Music and Youth Culture, based on his PhD in Sociology at Salford University. He also holds a BA in English from Manchester Metropolitan University and an MA in Communications Studies from the University of Leeds.
Dan was born in Otley and bred in Ilkley, West Yorkshire, a hop and a skip away from the Leeds setting of his Chloe novels.
His crime writing was purely academic to begin with. He’s written about media violence and tackled the age-old concern about television and video games influencing patterns of antisocial behaviour in society. After years of research and theoretical scrutiny, he still hasn’t cracked that particular nut.
He’s also written about the role of CCTV and surveillance in today’s Big Brother world, the sometimes fraught relationship between rap and juvenile crime, football hooliganism, and the sociocultural legacy of Britain’s most notorious serial killer – the Yorkshire Ripper.
All in all, Dan’s work has been translated into four languages: French, Hebrew, Korean and Turkish. He has presented guest lectures at international conferences and appeared on BBC Radio and ITV News in addition to providing expert commentary for The Guardian and The Daily Telegraph.
Following on from Chloe: Lost Girl, the story picks up with PC Tanner, now known as Nigel Fleming. Unfortunately he cannot remember the incident about which he is being questioned … well, not at first.
As time passes, the mystery of the ‘are they connected or not’ cases becomes abundantly clear. Of course, Sant was right, but someone is determined to make sure he doesn’t finally join those dots.
This is a speedy read, with the tension escalating as Sant gets closer to solving the mystery and there are plenty of twists and turns on the way.
This is reminiscent of the TV series Line of Duty, with the corruption of high ranking police officials at the core – exciting, frustrating, tense … all those magical ingredients that make a thrilling read are thrown into the mix here. (Though the phrase ‘bent copper’ is not said 😉 the implication is well and truly made)
As Fleming’s memory returns, he wants revenge. The matter of his priming, and who is involved adds more intrigue. You won’t see it coming – it’s sublime storytelling. The far right element is both eerily familiar and scary, and brings an added layer of unrelenting disquiet to the already sombre atmosphere.
Back at base, Sant is being fobbed off, pushed every which way by his superiors to avoid him making the necessary connections. The mood between Sant and Lister is grim, but oh so fascinating. Capstick is growing into his role and has much to offer despite his own doubts and the odd ‘interesting’ mistake. Along with Holdsworth, who continues to be strong and effective, the author has created a very believable working environment and set of relationships. This team are determined to crack the case – regardless of what those higher up might think.
To be honest, as the end drew closer, I began to feel a little disillusioned with the outcome. Wishing that Sant had not let the guilty party get away with it. But, that’s how I was meant to feel because there was another twist to come.
Clever writing, indeed.
This was an engaging read, keeping me totally enthralled, rooting for Sant and his team, and desperate for a solution. If you enjoy a thrilling police procedural story, then you can’t go far wrong with this.
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