29 December 2011

Review: BAD BOY, Peter Robinson

  • published by William Morrow (Harper Collins) 2010
  • ISBN 978-0-06-136295-8
  • 341 pages
  • Source: review copy supplied by Random House Australia
Publisher's blurb (author website)

Detective Chief Inspector Alan Banks faces his most challenging, personal, and terrifying case yet when his own daughter crosses paths with a psychopath...

A distraught woman arrives at the Eastvale police station desperate to speak to Detective Chief Inspector Alan Banks. But since Banks is away on holiday, his partner, Annie Cabbot, steps in. The woman tells Annie that she’s found a loaded gun hidden in the bedroom of her daughter, Erin—a punishable offense under English law. When an armed response team breaks into the house to retrieve the weapon, the seemingly straightforward procedure quickly spirals out of control.

But trouble is only beginning for Annie, the Eastvale force, and Banks, and this time, the fallout may finally do the iconoclastic inspector in. For it turns out that Erin’s best friend and roommate is none other than Tracy Banks, the DCI’s daughter, who was last seen racing off to warn the owner of the gun, a very bad boy indeed.

Thrust into a complicated and dangerous case intertwining the personal and the professional as never before, Annie and Banks—a bit of a bad boy himself—must risk everything to outsmart a smooth and devious psychopath. Both Annie and Banks understand that it’s not just his career hanging in the balance, it’s also his daughter’s life.

My take

I've followed the Alan Banks series for a number of years and so have a nodding acquaintance with the background to this story. I think however you could probably read BAD BOY as a stand alone because the author does give the reader snippets to fill in the holes.

As a character Banks doesn't come out of BAD BOY particularly well. True, he's had a tough life, but the fact that he's been a neglectful father rebounds on him when his daughter Tracy at the age of twenty four decides to choose her own path. As second in command of the Western Area, Banks is used to everyone working for his good and over the years that has made him rather self-centred, and to my mind, rather pre-occupied with his own well-being. Mind you, he is surrounded by some female characters, terrifically drawn, such as Annie Cabbott and Winsome Jackman , and even his boss DS Catherine Gervaise, who seem to always anticipate his needs. As a result Alan Banks tends to choose his own path rather than follow protocols.

If you enjoy British police procedurals then you will enjoy BAD BOY despite the fact that Peter Robinson is a Canadian author. (I chose to read this for the Canadian Book Challenge run by John Mutford). Robinson is yet another of those non-British authors who have set their novels in Britain, like Elizabeth George and Deborah Crombie.

BAD BOY isn't the best in the Alan Banks series but don't let that put you off.

My rating: 4.6

Other reviews on MiP
FRIEND OF THE DEVIL (2007)
ALL THE COLOURS OF DARKNESS (2008)

3 comments:

Margot Kinberg said...

Kerrie - Thanks - A fine review and nice to see this one profiled as well as you did. I do like the Alan Banks series; I think it's stayed fairly consistently good.

Bernadette said...

I read the early ones of this series but then somehow lost track. Maybe I'll start again with this one

Kerrie said...

I can bring it with me Bernadette at our next f2f book group

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