Book – The Necessary Deaths (The Delingpole Mysteries #1)
Author – David C. Dawson
Star rating - ★★★★★
No. of Pages – 200
Cover – Great!
POV – 3rd person, multi-POV
Would I read it again – Yes!
Genre – LGBT, Contemporary, Mystery, British
Wow! This is my first foray into David C. Dawson's work and I loved it! It was a brilliantly paced mystery with some high octane edge-of-your-seat action rounding off a really well plotted story.
Told through various POV's the story lets us see everything as it unfolds, from the first page where it all kicks off, to the last page where it is all laid to rest. The main POV is for Dominic, the man the series is named after, as he's the primary investigator of the crime. There are also small POV's given for Gemma, John, Samantha, and of course, Dominic's partner, Jonathan. These are all necessary, because they all reveal a little something more than what we knew before. And, surprisingly enough, though the entire story revolves around Simon and what he knows, he's in the hospital and either in a coma or unaware of what's going on, so he can never give his own POV about the events taking place, which makes it all the more intriguing.
The writing was right up my alley. There was a really nice, steady pace to the whole thing through the first half, which kicked into high gear at the halfway mark, when things began to reach a head. There was a nice suffusion of light, British humour and idiosyncrasies that I loved seeing. It's been a long time since I read a book that takes place in Britain, with British characters, that actually did it justice and this one did. It made me feel right at home, right down to the 'weird Scottish accent'.
When it comes to the characters, there wasn't one I didn't love. Except the bad guys, obviously. Dominic was practical but passionate and brilliant in his deductions, a little out of his element in places, which was great to see. Jonathan was exuberant and artistic, but had a softer side, too. I found the minor characters to have a really great level of depth that made them each relatable, interesting and pivotal to the story in their own way. My favourites were John, Jay, Harrington and Steve, though I definitely think we'll be seeing Miles again, too. Even the bad guys had depth, purpose and character.
There were well paced and thought out drips of background information given throughout the story, offered both when it was most appropriate and when it meant something to the plot. Right alongside the intrigue and the great characterisation, there wasn't anything about the writing that I didn't love.
Reading this just took me back to the good old fashioned Miss Marple and Midsomer Murders plots – there are a good few characters being killed off, but it's not frantic, with one every chapter, and it's not exaggerated or comical. The story unfolds at a nice slow pace, at first, with secrets and lies being revealed at well plotted increments, giving the characters time to think about what they mean, what they might add up to, and to discover more. Then, with careful crafting, it's all brought together into one big reveal. By the time it kicks into high gear at 70%, all the pieces are there, they just have to be put together and made sense of.
I can't wait to read book 2 and hope there are more books in the series. I'd love to see Steve and his techno-capabilities stick around, as well as Harrison, Miles and maybe even Pat Pecs.
“He thought for a moment, then went on, “Right. We need the place surrounded. Preferably by men with guns. Big guns. What are your connections like with the armed response unit at Thames Valley Police?”
Steve laughed. “You must be kidding. I do security-camera installations. I’m not fucking Jason Bourne.””
“Never trust a copper with a Tom Selleck mustache. Especially a British copper.””