THE WRECKAGE, Michael Robotham

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 762 KB
  • Print Length: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Hachette Digital (May 5, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004WJRT4K
  • Source: an ARC e-copy supplied by the publishers Mulholland Books to

Product Description (Amazon)

In London, ex-cop Vincent Ruiz rescues a young woman from a violent boyfriend but wakes next morning to find that he’s been set up and robbed. As he tracks down the thieves, he discovers the boyfriend’s tortured body and learns that powerful men are looking for the girl. What did Holly Knight steal that is so important to them?
Meanwhile in Baghdad, the bank robbery capital of the world, billions of dollars in reconstruction funds has gone missing and Pulitzer prize-winning Journalist Luca Terracini is trying to ‘follow the money’. The dangerous trail will lead him to London where he teams up with Vincent Ruiz and together they investigate the disappearance of an international banker and a mysterious ‘black hole’ in the bank’s accounts.

My take

THE WRECKAGE introduces a new character, investigative journalist Luca Terracini. In Baghdad Luca teams up with UN auditor Daniela Gardner. Someone is blowing up banks, the 18th so far for the year. Consignments of US dollars worth billions have disappeared.

In London our old friend Vincent Ruiz is mugged by a girl he took pity on in a bar. He wakes to find some of his things are gone – an iPod, his camera, his police medal, his passport, and some jewellery intended for his daughter Claire who is getting married on Saturday. His determination to locate the girl and retrieve his belongings has unexpected consequences that prove for us just how few degrees of separation there really are in modern Western society.

THE WRECKAGE is a contemporary thriller set against the background of both the world financial crisis and the attempts to build Iraq in the face of both greed and terrorism. It reflects both Robotham’s meticulous research, and his ability to create great fictional characters. He describes the main characters in a way that makesd you really care about what happens to them.

Robotham seems to have begun using a crisper, more immediate, style of narrative that mostly uses the present tense. It gives a cinematic impression of events happening as you watch.

This is a great read, both for those who have been waiting for the next in this fractallated series featuring retired London detective Vincent Ruiz and clinical psychologist Professor Joe O’Loughlin, and for those new to Robotham’s work.

My rating: 5.0

See Michael Robotham’s site and download the first chapter.
Review by Bernadette

Reviews of other Robotham titles
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Currently Reading: A Decline in Prophets by Sulari Gentill

I stumbled across Sulari Gentill’s first historical crime fiction novel in a bookshop almost a year ago. I was in a bit of a reading slump having recently finished a great book and finding nothing else to my taste. Happily I really enjoyed that book and have been looking forward to its sequel, A Decline in Prophets, very much. I’ve had it on my shelves for a little while now (thanks kindly to Sulari for sending me a copy) but library books and awards shortlists have occupied my reading time of late. However, the book’s publication date is 1 July and I simply must read it before everyone else (or almost everyone else).

I’ve read the first 30 or so pages this afternoon (when I should have been doing some work) and it has started well, already grabbing my attention and drawing me back to the 1930’s. The book opens with our hero, Rowland ‘Rowly’ Sinclair, on board the luxury ocean liner RMS Aquitania recovering from the injury he received during the harrowing events of the first book. For seven months he and his bohemian friends have been travelling the world in style, thanks to the Sinclair family fortune. On board they have met an eclectic bunch of passengers including some real historical figures such as Annie Besant who was political activist for several causes and at one time was President of the Theosophical Society. Naturally, this being a crime novel after all, there has been a rather unpleasant death on board the boat and Rowly is implicated. What next I wonder?

It looks like I’m set for another adventure which will bring to life some more little-known events in Australian history and combine my interests in things artistic and political. How delicious.