Today’s Team review is from Judith, she blogs at http://judithbarrowblog.com/
Judith has been reading Silenced Justice by Joe Broadmeadow
I felt I needed to review Silenced Justice in a different way than I normally do for various reasons.
it’s a complicated novel of political corruption, Russian Mafia and money laundering but it’s a book that has been obviously researched in detail (whether from the author’s own experiences or from actual investigation.) Complicated but cleverly woven together
I actually struggled to follow a lot of the story at the beginning because I spent too much time going back and forth trying to find who the many characters were and how they fitted in. I soon realised that it would have been better if I had read the first of Joe Broadmeadow’s Lieutenant Josh Williams novels before tackling this one.
As it is there is a lot of the back story condensed into blocks of the narrator ‘telling’ the reader what has happened in the past, or how the system works within certain departments. And, often, I skimmed over those sections.
The opening narration of one incident in the story is interesting and full of tension. I believed the central plot would be the solving of an historical racist arrest of a black man, charged illegally with rape and murder, deliberately put into the general population of a prison and beaten to death before given the chance of a fair trial. But this proved to be a subplot, the means to an end in that it led into the main story; a plot with many twists and turns. Nevertheless the story flows quickly, though mainly through dialogue.
And the main drawback for me was the dialogue. In the flashbacks (and occasionally in the present day sections of the book) the author gives the characters the traits and attitudes of certain government official and police departments in the nineteen seventies. That works to a certain degree and isn’t the problem. What was my difficulty was that most of the time, I didn’t think the dialogue differentiated the characters. The theme that runs through all the dialogue is sarcasm, cynical jeering and one expletive that is part of all the characters’ conversations, discussions and negotiations. I really don’t care if there is swearing in a book if it fits the character but they all used the same one and it became boring. I realise that the author intended to portray badinage and wit between colleagues. It just didn’t work for me in that they all sounded the same.
And I would have liked a little more description to give a sense of place.
When I finished my review and needed to add the blurb I did read some of the reviews for Silenced Justice. It’s had some extremely good reviews and has obviously been enjoyed by many readers.