Turn a Blind Eye (Detective William Warwick #3), by Jeffrey Archer

Eight stars

First and foremost, a large thank you to NetGalley, Jeffrey Archer, and St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy of this publication, which allows me to provide you with an unbiased review.

The newest novel in Jeffrey Archer’s latest series is always reason for some excitement, at least for those who have a penchant for the author’s attention to detail. DI William Warwick has been through a great deal of late and feels that his actions might merit demotion or worse. However, his superiors at the Met have other ideas, using him to coax out those who have gone rogue. It will be a secret mission that could cost Warwick everything if he is caught, but ensure another promotion if he is successful. Archer at his best in this piece, which keeps his many fans on the edge of their seats.

As the case of Assem Rashidi, notorious drug lord, is set to go to trial, William Warwick is promoted for his work on the arrest. DI Warwick is not sure if he ought to be happy about this, or expect to be punished because of all the corners that were cut in the sting operation. Still, he’s happy to be a part of the action and will follow whatever plan is put before him.

DI Warwick is given a daunting task to help discover whether others within the Metropolitan Police have been acting in a corrupt manner. It will not only be difficult, but highly dangerous, as no one likes a leaker. Amassing his team, DI Warwick begins targeting a young detective who is surely living beyond his means, which is likely related to receiving kickbacks.

The Rashidi trial comes before the courts with DI Warwick as one of its key witnesses. Two others in the Warwick family are heading the Crown’s case—Sir Julian, the ever-present father, and Grace, his sister—prepared to put away this seedy character as soon as possible. The case will be difficult, with a strong defence headed by Booth Watson QC, but the Warwicks are determined, if nothing else. The case hinges on identification and Rashidi will do anything he can to lead everyone off his trail.

Meanwhile, Beth Warwick has been tending to her new twins while William is away working. She knows the life of a detective’s wife is anything but glamourous, but finds ways of keeping herself busy. Oddly enough, this includes spending some time wit ha new friend, Christina Faulkner, who happens to have been recently divorced from William’s greatest foe, Miles. When a series of events thrust Christina into a massive fortune, it becomes apparent that corruption inside the Met is much deeper than first expected.

Juggling the trial and some of his own sleuthing, DI Warwick gets to the heart of the matter, in hopes of rooting out those who would try to bring the Met to its knees. It will be a challenge, but there’s nothing that DI William Warwick holds closer to his heart than ensuring no one is turning a blind eye to justice. Well, perhaps family is a little more important, but that’s for another story!

Anyone familiar with Jeffrey Archer and his writing will know that there are numerous subtleties found within each story. Be they linking pieces that keep a series connected or off the cuff remarks that come back to mean something later, Archer keeps his readers on their toes throughout. This book is no exception, creating a series about William Warwick, a character who was mentioned throughout the Clifton Chronicles as being the main protagonist of Harry’s popular series. Now, the reader can see all the buzz that the novels created directly, as Archer takes on the role of Harry Clifton to breathe life into the idea.

William Warwick is a fabulous protagonist and grows effectively throughout the series. He has been promoted and works on showing his leadership throughout this piece. However, he cannot stop looking behind him, as there are those who would love to see him fall flat on his face. Added to that, Warwick a new father to twins, which forces him to divide his time between work and home life, never easy at the best of times. The reader sees some solid development throughout, perfect as things heat up ahead of the fourth novel.

Archer is never one to create flat characters, even those who are in a supporting role. The cast of this novel offer great depth and excitement throughout, as the story shifts to numerous plot developments and settings throughout. There are those who complement Warwick well, as well as individuals who flavour the narrative such that the impediments are clear. Never a shortage of action fills the pages of this book, with Archer providing wondering entertainment in the form of his minor characters.

The story itself was strong and began soon after the previous novel ended. This is always hard to do, as Archer must bridge the excitement that ended the last piece with a new sense of pizzazz immediately. There is no issue with the flow of the story or pulling the reader into the centre. I found myself lost in the story with a great deal of ease, leaving me to want even more with each chapter. The narrative pushed along well and kept me begging for more, with short chapters that teased as much as they propelled the story forward. Archer has a style I have come to love and I cannot get enough, so I am happy to know that the next piece is hot on the heels of this one, due out in November. What a treat that will be, as DI William Warwick has much to do in the coming years.

Kudos, Lord Archer, for another winner. You never seem to slump in my opinion, which makes seeing your books all the more exciting for me.

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

Hidden in Plain Sight (Detective William Warwick #2), by Jeffrey Archer

Nine stars

First and foremost, a large thank you to NetGalley, Jeffrey Archer, and St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy of this publication, which allows me to provide you with an unbiased review.

Jeffrey Archer returns with another stellar novel in the William Warwick series. Taking readers back to the glory days of the 1980s, this police procedural is sure to impress many, particularly those who have a great affinity for Archer’s Clifton Chronicles.

William Warwick has been given a rare treat at work, a long overdue promotion to Detective Sergeant. However, with this comes a move to the Major Drug Squad for an intense case that could bring much notoriety. Large amounts of heroin have made its way into London, a drug that has crippled 1986 England and sent waves throughout the Metropolitan Police. 

Warwick’s promotion brings a new member to the team, DC Paul Adaja, whose interest in getting things done helps pave the way to a successful addition to the team. Working through the handful of confidential informants (CIs) at their disposal, Warwick and the team learn that there is a weekly meeting that could garner a great deal of potent arrests, though the location of the Viper remains a well-guarded secret. Through a series of mad car chases, working off crumbs of CI intel,  Warwick is none the wiser when it comes to landing this big fish, but refuses to give up too swiftly. 

On a personal note, Warwick and his fiancee, Beth, are eager to share their nuptials, planning a small ceremony that turns out to be anything but calm. Well-known criminal mastermind, Malcolm Faulkner, makes his presence known and tries to destroy any credibility Warwick might have, though the power of love appears to prevail.

When news comes that Faulkner is about to receive a shipment of drugs that could end him away for the foreseeable future, it’s all hands on deck to make the bust. Faulkner cries foul and does anything he can to keep the changes from sticking, though the prosecutorial team is none other than Sir Julian and Grace Warwick, the father and sister duo of our beloved William. The case proceeds and the jury is empanelled, leaving the courts to decide the fate of Faulkner once and for all.

When Warwick discovers where he can find the Viper’s Nest, he’s quick to rush in that direction, though it won’t be a peaceful arrest by any means. Casualties could be massive as these are the roughest of the rough, Warwick will soon learn that this is the least of his concerns. Entertaining throughout, Archer shows that he is still at the top of his game.

I have long been a fan of most anything that Jeffrey Archer puts to paper, having amassed a large quantity of high quality novels. This new series, which is actually the collection of writing referenced repeatedly throughout the Clifton Chronicles, may be set in the 1980s, but can easily hold the attention of the dedicated  thriller fan.

William Warwick returns and plays a wonderful protagonist. While he is a sensible cop, his outgoing nature endears him to many. Always looking for the next big break in a case, Warwick works his magic in ways only Jeffrey Archer could connive. With his strong ties to family and his workplace, Warwick’s character develops throughout this piece and there are hints that he will have to branch out in the upcoming novel, as he is sure to take on a new role or two.

Archer does well developing some of his secondary characters as well, who surely help enrich the story in many ways. From the others in the Warwick clan to those who work within the Met, each flavours the narrative effectively and advances Archer’s ever-developing plot. While some are recurring characters, there are a handful of strong one-timers, all of whom keep the reader entertained throughout.

The book proves highly entertaining, advancing the series well while keeping things highly realistic. Set in the late 1980s, Archer uses this backdrop to develop a strong story with numerous plotlines that are sure to keep the reader guessing. There is not a ‘dated’ feel to the book, though surely the lack of technology mentioned is sure to be noticed by those scouring the narrative. Archer uses his wonderful style to take the reader on this twisted journey, as they lose themselves in the strong narrative. With decent length chapters, Archer uses his style to inject detail into the story, leaving the reader to picture things as they occur. Cliffhangers throughout and some great subplot development that makes wishing for the next book all but essential.

Kudos, Lord Archer, for another success. I can’t get enough of your books and look forward to the next publication.

Please have a look at my review on the Mystery & Suspense site, where many other reviews and information can be found.

Review: Hidden In Plain Sight

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

Nothing Ventured (William Warwick #1), by Jeffrey Archer

Nine stars

First and foremost, a large thank you to NetGalley, Jeffrey Archer, and St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy of this publication, which allows me to provide you with an unbiased review.

Having loved Jeffrey Archer’s Clifton Chronicles, I was pleased to see this new series that will have my fellow fans just as excited. Those who remember Harry Clifton and his prodigious career as a writer will remember the William Warwick novels that were the author’s bread and butter. Archer has decided to shed some light on these, writing a series of novels about the man who climbed the ranks of the police service. In this series debut, William has decided not to follow in his father’s footsteps and refuses to read law. Instead, he chooses the path of art history before enrolling in the police academy. After passing his entrance exams, Warwick is sent to the beat, where he garners some much needed experience under the tutelage of a seasoned copper. When given the chance to write the detective’s exam, he soars through the experience and is soon assigned to Art and Antiquities, using his attention to detail and past academic experiences. Warwick has much to learn, but is also tossed out to juggle a number of cases, all of which take him in different directions and has him meeting book forgers, currency schemers, and even traffickers in stolen artwork. While not entirely won over by his son’s choices, Sir Julian Warwick QC can see the benefits to Warwick’s choices and works with him on a side project. It would seem the woman who has caught young DC William Warwick’s eye has a secret she has tried to keep her herself. However, as Warwick grows fonder of Beth Rainsford, he cannot fight the urge to unravel yet another mystery. A brilliant launching pad to what I hope will be a sensational series, Archer does not disappoint readers with this piece. Highly recommended to those who love Lord Archer’s writing style, as well as readers who like a light and fast-paced police procedural series with artistic flavourings.

In my long reading career, I can say that I have long loved every opportunity that I have had to curl up with a Jeffrey Archer novel. His ability to keep the story simple and yet enthralling is second to none, while also developing strong characters and a plot that keeps the reader wanting more. As I mentioned above, this is an interesting project, one in which Archer almost assumes the role of Harry Clifton in crafting these stories that appeared throughout the Clifton Chronicles. William Warwick serves as a wonderful protagonist whose early rise as an officer of the law is documented here. From his passion for police work on the beat through to his intuition and ability to find clues where others fail, Warwick is both in tune with his surroundings and a character worthy of the reader’s attention. The novel portrays both his personal and professional sides, injecting the needed passion in each to develop a well-rounded individual who enriches the larger story. There are many threads left dangling, which Archer will hopefully tie-off or add to in the subsequent novels of the series. Others enrich the story and the plot lines, complementing Warwick where possible, but also developing sub-plots that could emerge in future novels. The story was strong and introduced the reader to this most formidable character. While some may worry that there is a need to know the Clifton Chronicles to read this piece, the Warwick novels are independent of the previous series, though I am sure devout fans of Clifton will see tie-ins when Harry mentioned the novels throughout his time as a protagonist in Archer’s earlier work. A mix of short and longer chapters, as well as Archer’s use of themes from past novels—art, policing, court proceedings—allow this series debut to be one that is sure to garner much discussion and anticipation between novels. I, for one, cannot wait to see how William Warwick will rise through the ranks to the pinnacle of his career.

Kudos, Lord Archer, for this great start. As you mentioned in the author’s note, I can only hope you will survive the entire journey as you dazzle your countless fans.

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