Jeff Calhoun is an American Journalist with Hence, a New York Magazine. He transfers to London to replace Tod, a newly dead colleague. He moves into Tod’s apartment and discovers that Tod did not die a natural death but was murdered by thugs in the employ of Victor Deller, a British media baron. Deller is at the height of his career and amongst his current schemes is one to provide a fitness centre for MPs in Westminster; a project ably supported by the PM herself. Tod has discovered that Deller and his sexually voracious wife had several very dubious financial interests including a prostitution ring. They plan to extend the latter clandestinely into the fitness centre, trapping unwary MPs into activities which would lay them open to blackmail. The struggle by mutually antagonistic groups – politicians, Deller, trafficked women, thugs and journalists – ends with an explosive finale
Received in PDF format from the publishers Hopcyn Press, and read on an iPad using Kindle software
Jeff has been posted to England as the “foreign correspondent” for a New York Magazine and whilst trying to find his way through the maze of English Politics, upper echelon MPs and the landed gentry, also gets involved with escorts, prostitutes, assassins, suicides, spies and black market thugs. Along the way there is sex of many types, peerages for money, blackmail, bribery, and deals being made under some very pricey tables.
Also, this is England but not quite as we know it. The PM is a woman, the monarch is a man, the US president is a black woman, the main political parties are called something different (e.g. CoLaborative party). There is an implication that this story is set sometime in the near but unspecified future.
As you can see from above what is covered in the story, there are lots of subjects covered in what is – in ebook format – a sub 300 page book. The different strands are set up fairly gently in the beginning, however approximately half way through, these strands start getting mixed together. Events soon come at you in wave after wave and it doesn’t let you rest or skim – i had to pay attention all the way through and needed a lie down at the end!
So: A tightly plotted, multi stranded story showing the darker side of English politics (there is no mention of Scotland/Wales or NI so is it English or British?) and the influence of big business and media. A tiring read (in a good way), this is not a book for a short weekend read. If however, you want a slightly more challenging read, to keep you on your toes through the book, this is the one for you