Sunday, 18 December 2011

Blood Hunt by Ian Rankin - Book Review



Publisher's Write-up:



Gordon Reeve has a funeral to go to. His journalist brother has been found dead in a car, a presumed suicide. Not a nice reason to be flying the Atlantic.



And when he gets there it seems that nobody wants to answer his questions – why was the car in which his brother's body was found locked from the outside? Why does the local cop act like his shadow and prevent him talking to the friend who saw Jim last? Why does he have the sinking feeling that it wasn't a ghost he saw parked outside the crematorium?



Ex-SAS, a professional killer with an anger management problem, it's not in Reeve's nature to let such questions go unanswered, particularly when the murders come knocking on his own front door.”



Blood Hunt – the last novel written by Ian Rankin under the pen name Jack Harvey. Any person who has already read Ian Rankin's first Inspector Rebus novel Knots & Crosses, would naturally be attracted to this piece of work, as it features Gordon Reeve – showing the other side of his life. But, it is not necessary for you to have read Knots & Crosses to understand this novel – this makes absolutely no reference to any Rebus novel and is very much a stand alone.



Ex-SAS personnel, Gordon Reeve, now a tutor, doing survival training programmes for aspiring bodyguards or any other dangerous profession at South Uist, a Scottish Island in the Atlantic. He gets a phone call, informing that his brother had been found dead at San Diego, California, USA. On reaching there, Gordon Reeve is convinced that his brother has been murdered. However, the police are not willing to cooperate with Reeve and he isn't willing to let all the mysterious questions surrounding his brother's death (as mentioned by the publisher) go unanswered. His brother was working on an article on Bovine spongiform encephalopathy[BSE(commonly known as mad cow disease)] which might embarrass certain parties if the article comes to light. So, Reeve is now an avenger, although, he doesn't know who he is against and if he thinks he is not in danger, he is mistaken.



This book was is a wonderful thriller, probably the best I've read so far. It has a brilliant plot, good language, expressions and dialogues and to top it all, no boring sub-plots. What I like about Rankin's non-Rebus novels are his complex characters which gives me a lot of knowledge such as Miles Flint in Watchman (although it was on bugs, which didn't interest me) and Gordon Reeve in Blood Hunt. Gordon Reeve's interest in anarchism and Nietzsche and Reeve has managed to pass on his interest in anarchism to me. I had also failed to find any loose ends in the book, maybe because I read the last 150 pages in around two hours (my reading speed is around a page per minute). The best thing I liked about this book was that it had a very proper and precise ending, which was lacking in most of the other Ian Rankin books which I've read so far.



The downsides of the book were very few, but for someone who had read Knots & Crosses, the fact that there was no reference to John Rebus considering that he was supposed to be such a close friend, it would have definitely been disappointing. Moreover, Gordon Reeve reminded me of the protagonist in an Alistair MacLean novel which I just read.



This is a very good book to read if you're interested in thrillers and it deserves a rating of eight.



Rating : 8/10


Have a nice day,

Andy

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