The Edge Of Sanity by Chris Thomas reviewed

The Edge Of Sanity Book Cover The Edge Of Sanity
Chris Thomas
Bloodhound Books
August 20, 2018

In a derelict squat, the Smart Man watches as the new narcotic developed by his shadowy organisation wreaks havoc on its unsuspecting victims. The drug is now ready for sale on their exclusive darknet market place.

Elsewhere, DCI Robert Smith, the retired head of the Cyber Crimes Unit, seeks out crime boss Curtis Slater at his remote farm. He offers to provide Slater with information in exchange for money. But what information is he offering?

Meanwhile, former detective Pete Harris had started a new life, away from the Cyber Crimes Unit, with his daughter and begins to rekindle his relationship with old colleague Grace Brooks.

With his life seemingly complete, Pete’s world comes crashing down as he is drawn into Slater’s game with fatal consequences. He must join forces with his old enemies in a race against time. But can Pete save his daughter and Grace from the clutches of Slater, the Smart Man, and the sinister ring master, the Professor?

Review of The Edge of Sanity by Chris Thomas

Although he doesn’t feature immediately I guess the lead character in the Edge of Sanity is Pete Harris. He was previously with the Police’s Cyber Crimes Unit. His departure (and that of others in the unit) would appear to have been covered by the previous book in this series. While I think this can be read standalone I think the reader will get more out of it if they read the earlier book first.

The opening chapter was dark, nasty and interesting. A designer drug is tested on two unsuspecting drug addicts. After that an ex DCI from the Cyber Crimes Unit meets with a crime boss to offer him information. The narrative switches through 3 and then 4 people or groups involved in this story. As well as Pete and the crime boss, Slater, there are the Majestic Road crew with the Smart Man and the Brotherhood of the Righteous.

The pace here is reasonable though not particularly fast initially. There are a range of characters most of whom I didn’t really find all that convincing. I did find the behaviour of the crime boss Slater very odd. Other than by unthinking violence I’m not sure how he ever managed to be a “successful crime boss”. Indeed the early interaction between Slater and the ex DCI offering information did leave me unimpressed and probably affected my views on the book as a whole.

The premise of the Edge of Sanity ex police fighting dark web violence and drugs interested me. In many ways I think the story was very valid. However I confess I found it a little confusing. While the Majestic Road group were clear from quite early on I can’t say the same about the Brotherhood. By the end we have a better idea of who is on who’s side but until then I was confused at times. Maybe this book simply was not one for me. There are extremes of violence and drugs which I didn’t find appealing. However I also found few of the characters well fleshed out and that left this book readable for me though not particularly good or bad.

Note – I received an advance digital copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for a fair review