Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead  by Owen Mullen

Fast paced crime thriller

Rating:  4 out of 5


This thriller starts, in typical Owen Mullen style, with action packed drama.  Set in Glasgow, and surrounding area, the fast pace continues throughout the book, interspersed with the lives of those the action has impacted upon.

Before the Devil ...This is the third (stand alone) book featuring Private Investigator Charlie Cameron , as he struggles to solve, or understand, why a man has gone missing and what is going on at the local hospital.   Meanwhile a new development is being proposed, with the slogan “Good for Glasgow“.   However, how good it is for anyone opposing the development is a different matter!

Lending a hand to unravel what is going on, are great characters from previous Owen Mullen books including Pat Logue (when he’s not occupied by beer drinking)  and of course DS Geddes.  All the characters seem very true to life, and are becoming more familiar as we get to know them a little better in each book.  Indeed if I bump into Charlie Cameron in a pub I will know him immediately!

The time-line starts on New Year’s Eve/Hogmanay and keeps up a brisk pace over a relatively short period.  No to-ing and fro-ing between different time periods here!

A 4* rating from me, as there are quite a few characters in the book, and I did occasionally get confused as to who was who.  Probably says more about me than the book!  The story holds together well, the action keeps going, with some poignancy added, and insights into Charlie Cameron’s private life gives even more interest.

For readers new to this author, although this is a stand alone book, many of the characters appear (or are central) in his previous books. Therefore I recommend starting  earlier in the series, so that you know more about each character before meeting them in this book.  I started reading the series at Book 2 Old Friends and New Enemies , and loved it, so that’s a good place to start with if you don’t want to go back to Book 1 Games People Play. 

 I’m looking forward to Book 4 in the series – hope there will be one!

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