Long Way Home by Eva Dolan
A man is burnt alive in a suburban garden shed. DI Zigic and DS Ferreira are called in from the Peterborough Hate Crimes Unit to investigate the murder. Their victim is quickly identified as a migrant worker. Zigic and Ferreira know all too well the problems that come with dealing with a community that has more reason than most not to trust the police, but when another migrant worker is attacked, tensions rapidly begin to rise as they search for their killer.
First Impressions: From the first few pages I could tell this would be an engrossing crime read. The setting in particular was well described. For a number of days I squeezed in as many pages as I could between finishing my gym workout and collecting my son from the creche!
Highlights: I found a lot to like in the start of this series. I liked the Peterborough setting and the way the different parts of the greater area were described. Perhaps Peterborough may start to get some literary related tourism? It’s also a good reminder that not all immigrants head straight to London. It’s easy to forget this. I liked the two detectives – they are an interesting mix of personalities and ethnicities – and the way they investigated the crime within their Hate Crimes unit. The author had obviously done a lot of research on the lives of migrant workers and this paid dividends as the novel was both informative and believable. I definitely learnt a few new things about migrant workers such as the renting out of garden sheds. Not the sort of business venture I’m keen to get involved in but it did make me take more notice of my neighbours’ sheds 🙂 Oh, and very importantly, the twists are good.
If I was an editor: I would say that while the first and last third of the novel required quick page turning, the middle did lag in parts which is surprising as the investigation kept moving at a reasonable pace. However, this didn’t necessarily hinder my enjoyment of the novel, and to be honest with you, as this is a bit of a belated review, my memory of the novel in hindsight doesn’t involve any lagging.
Overall: An original and believable crime novel to start a series that I can see myself comfortably working my way through.
Long Way Home: 4 Stars
Thank you to Vintage for a copy of the title to review.