Vermin, by William A. Graham

Nine stars

First and foremost, a large thank you to NetGalley, William A. Graham, and Black & White Publishing for providing me with a copy of this publication, which allows me to provide you with an unbiased review.

William A. Graham seeks to impress with his debut novel, set in the heart of Scotland, with an interesting investigative twist. Allan Linton is a private investigator with a great deal of sleuthing experience. Before grabbing his magnifying glass and tweed coat, he worked as an investigative reporter for one of the dailies in Dundee. Now, he’ll take on most any case that crosses his desk. When a gentleman darkens his door, Linton is not sure what to expect. Handed a school photo of a young woman, Linton is asked to locate her as soon as possible. The gentleman before him is acting as a go-between, so Linton cannot even tell who is client might actually be. While he and his ‘associate’ begin looking into the case, other locals reach out for assistance on a variety of matters, including Linton’s own daughter, Ailsa. As Linton scours through records and pulls on all his contacts to locate this woman, the reader discovers much about the story that brought Allan Linton into his current employ and how he almost lost it all to Ailsa’s mother. When Linton thinks that he may have a lead in the case, things take a turn for the worse and it’s a mad scramble to ensure that he, and Ailsa, remain safe from some of Dundee’s criminal element. Graham does well to keep the reader intrigued with this debut novel. Recommended for those who like a quick investigative thriller (does such a genre exist?) that can be read in a few hours!

I will admit, it was the dust jacket blurb that caught my attention with this one. I knew nothing of Graham and shelved this piece closer to its publication date. However, as soon as I started, I will pulled into the middle of the story and learning about Allan Linton. A fairly down to earth guy, Linton proves to be the perfect protagonist for this short piece. He offers much back story in a few long and meandering chapters, giving the reader some context throughout the novel. With his own development, both on cases and in his personal life, Linton easily becomes someone the reader can enjoy throughout this piece. Those around him prove also to do well at entertaining and offering some of their own flavouring. Should Graham allow this to launch a series, I can see some definite character development happening in upcoming novels. The story was simple and somewhat hokey, but in a good way. Simply put, it went from A to Z with a few offshoots, but keeps the reader’s attention throughout. Complex plots and numerous twists are kept from the pages of this book, but its entertainment value cannot be matched. I can only hope William A. Graham returns soon with more to offer the reader, for I will certainly queue up to see what else he plans on publishing.

Kudos, Mr. Graham, for a great debut. I can see much potential and I hope others will jump on the bandwagon as well.

A Book for All Seasons, a different sort of Book Challenge: https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/248185-a-book-for-all-seasons

Advertisements