Book Review: The Sound of Sirens

In a dead-beat coastal town in North East Scotland, seventeen-year-old Malky Campbell is desperate to help his pregnant and heroin addicted girlfriend.

Ewan Gault ~ The Sound of Sirens

Synopsis

In a dead-beat coastal town in North East Scotland, seventeen-year-old Malky Campbell is desperate to help his pregnant and heroin addicted girlfriend.

DI Stark, a middle-aged detective, alarmed by the rise of teenage crime in Port Cawdor, uncovers the operations of a county line gang that are flooding the area with drugs and engaging in a vicious turf war with a local family.

Malky has just started working on his family’s trawler with his cousin Johnny, when their boat pulls up Johnny’s brother in its nets. The rest of the crew, the tightly-knit community and the police start to suspect that the cousins are responsible for his death.

With his brother dead, Johnny inherits the family trawler, which he plans to use to smuggle drugs into the country for the county line gang, giving him enough money to start a new life.

Review

I love the sea. It calms me down and relaxes me. However, I’m well aware of its dark, dangerous side.

The Sound of Sirens starts with a body pulled from the water. But what starts as a murder investigation spirals into something much darker and scarier.

Like the sea, the story flows and the going is rough and stormy for many of our key characters. These lost souls have a bleak future ahead, yet some of them face it with determination and good intentions… even if they are somewhat misguided in their actions.

Characters are engaging, if not likeable. Barely out of school, they are forced to grow up quickly and face up to the harsh realities of adult life.

Drugs. Neglect. Pregnancy. Despair.

Although dark and tragic, this book is well-written and incredibly visual: the sparse sea is lonely and isolating; the town streets terrifying. Our characters’ choices reflect their upbringing, morals & sense of duty.

With a strong pace and consistent drama, The Sound of Sirens provides plenty of action until the very last page, leaving the reader unsure if the characters are facing a life of hope or tragedy.

Gritty, gripping and grim.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I received a copy of this book from Love Book Tours and Leamington Books. All opinions my own.

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