Sirens by Joseph Knox
Published by Crown Publishing Group on February 20, 2018 (expected)
Series: An Aidan Waits Thriller, #1
Genre(s): fiction, crime, mystery, thriller
Format & Pages: e-book, 344
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“Razor-sharp urban noir…very special indeed.” — Lee Child
The breathtakingly propulsive and stunningly assured debut thriller, perfect for readers of Tana French, Don Winslow and Dennis Lehane
The mission is suicide.
Infiltrating the inner circle of enigmatic criminal Zain Carver is dangerous enough. Pulling it off while also rescuing Isabelle Rossiter, a runaway politician’s daughter, from Zain’s influence? Impossible. That’s why Aidan Waits is the perfect man for the job. Disgraced, emotionally damaged, and despised by his superiors. In other words, completely expendable.
But Aidan is a born survivor. And as he works his way deep into Zain’s shadowy world, he finds that nothing is as it seems. Zain is a mesmerizing, Gatsby-esque figure who lures young women into his orbit–women who have a bad habit of turning up dead. But is Zain really responsible? And will Isabelle be next?
Before long, Aidan finds himself in over his head, cut loose by his superiors, and dangerously attracted to the wrong woman.
How can he save the girl if he can’t even save himself?
Although Sirens is in my wheelhouse as a crime/mystery thriller, this book is not quite like anything I’ve read before. Between a focus on the drug trade and a gritty atmosphere placing it squarely in urban noir (two things I find I don’t read a lot of), this book was just outside my typical comfort zone.
It’s a sign of truly great writing when an author can suck you in to a story despite it being outside your comfort zone, and that’s exactly what Knox did here. It took me a few chapters to find my footing, but once I did, I was swept up by this story. With complex characters who must face the consequences of their choices, taut pacing, and meticulous plotting, I was surprised to discover this is the author’s debut novel.
In true fashion, I couldn’t help but compare this to a movie. The vibe of Sirens gave me a strong reminder of The Departed right off the bat, a feeling which only increased as the story progressed. If any of this sounds like it’s up your alley, I highly encourage you to check this out. I can’t wait to see what the author does next.
*Many thanks to Penguin Random House’s First to Read program for providing an arc of this edition in exchange for an honest review.