Today I’m re-sharing my review of The Burning Men by Steve Parker just in case you missed it at the end of last year 🙂
Title: The Burning Men by Steve Parker
Publisher: Joffe Books
Date Published: 7th December 2018
Genre: Police Procedural
Discover a crime thriller full of shocking twists by one of the most exciting new authors you’ll read this year.
A MAN IS BURNT AT THE STAKE IN A LONDON PARK. HIS SMOULDERING CORPSE IS A MESSAGE OF THE MOST VIOLENT KIND.
The man burnt alive is Davey Caine. He is the heir to the criminal empire created by his father, William ‘Billy’ Caine. Billy is a notorious and violent gangster with total control of South East London. But he’s not the man he used to be and the sharks smell blood in the water.
Detectives Ray Paterson and Johnny Clocks must find the killer before Billy extracts his own brand of justice. They find themselves drawn ever deeper into London’s underworld.
The streets explode into violence and the body count rises. Men are shot and burned alive in a tit-for-tat power struggle between rival gangs.
Detectives Ray Paterson and Johnny Clocks find themselves trying to control men of extreme viciousness. Men who have no fear of the law and its consequences and who are unafraid to kill anyone who stands in their way — including police detectives.
Paterson is stunned when he’s offered the chance to stop the conflict dead in its tracks. If he ignores it, the mayhem continues. If he takes it, there will be a price to pay.
What he doesn’t know is that the price will come with hidden and devastating consequences.
ON THE STREETS OF LONDON, A SIMMERING GANG WAR IS ABOUT TO ERUPT WITH PATERSON AND CLOCKS CAUGHT RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE.
This is the third in a series of action-packed, edge-of-your-seat crime thrillers, with an ending that will have your heart in your mouth.
Perfect for fans of Kimberley Chambers, Damien Boyd, Rachel Abbott, Patricia Gibney or Martina Cole.
Detective Superintendent Ray Paterson is a young and (thanks to family money) wealthy womaniser, separated from his model wife and tipped to be the youngest ever commissioner of police. He knows he’s weak when it comes to practical policing and struggles to find a place among his peers, desperate to be a good policeman and not just a ‘climber’.
Detective Inspector Johnny Clocks is a foul-mouthed, working-class officer. He grew up surrounded by rogues and villains to become a first-class thief taker with the Met police. However, his childish attitude has short-circuited his career and he spends his days antagonising as many people as he can.
Steve Parker is a retired police officer who served for 20 years in numerous high-profiles squads.
Bermondsey is an area of London nestled on the banks of the River Thames. It once had a reputation for housing more armed robbers, murderers and career criminals than anywhere else in the country. Now one of the most upmarket places to live and work in London, it has all but severed itself from its working-class roots. Home to the iconic Tower Bridge and crammed with expensive apartments, art galleries, fancy restaurants and famous residents. But for the police, those who truly know, Bermondsey never lost its roots . . . or its reputation.
DETECTIVE RAY PATERSON
Book 1: THEIR LAST WORDS
Book 2: THE LOST CHILDREN
Book 3: THE BURNING MEN
So this is the third in the Paterson and Clocks series while it could be read as a stand alone, it does refer heavily from the first book so I’d personally start with that if you don’t want any spoilers (you can read my review of Their Last Words here).
Paterson and Clocks are called to a crime scene where a man has been cuffed to a pole and burnt alive. They quick find out that he is no other than David Caine who’s father Billy Caine is a notorious gangster.
As their investigation progresses they find themselves blocked at every turn by Serious and Organised crimes who claim that they will put their undercover operatives in danger.
Billy wants revenge for his son but can Paterson and Clocks stop him before it turns into a full scale gang war on the streets of London.
This a real gritty and gruesome novel! So much is pack into It’s pages, brutal and bonkers gangsters, kidnapping and people being burned alive!
As I said in my first review, Steve Parker really puts his police experience into his writing and gives a lot more of the procedural side of things than most authors to give it that realistic feel.
To me Clocks is his same old self in this novel, dishing out his own brand of pitch black humour and mouthing off to anyone and everyone. The only thing that has changed for me is his relationship with Paterson, which has become what looks more like a friendship with some grudging respect on either side. Paterson on the other hand is a broken man, self medicating and burying his problems which I feel are going to come to the surface soon!
To me the second half of the book turned into a bit gangland drama, which I have to be honest I’m not really a fan of and would have preferred a bit more focus on the police procedural side but of course that’s just my opinion.
I would recommend The Burning Man to anyone who loves a good gritty gangland thriller mixed with a police procedural. The ending leaves it open for another book, I’m interested to see where the story is heading.
About The Author:
I was born and raised in South East London (Peckham to be precise – cushty, my son). At the ripe old age of twenty-one, I joined the Metropolitan Police where I served for twenty years before I was pensioned out with a serious back injury. I then went to work as an enforcement officer for a local authority before taking redundancy.
Thankfully, I’ve been blessed with a complete lack of DIY skills so was legitimately able to get away with swanning around the house doing bugger all, all day long. Finding myself with plenty of spare time and a deep desire to never work for anyone again, I gave myself permission to go back to writing (I’d been writing on and off for years).
When I’m not writing, I’m out taking photographs, something I’ve done since I was a nipper and will do until the day I shuffle off this mortal coil.
I live down in the windier part of East Sussex near the sea with my long-suffering wife and my ‘off-her-nut’ cockerpoo. I have two sons of whom I am so proud, I cannot begin to tell you.