The Rule of Fear – Luke Delaney – 4 stars!

Thank you to Netgalley and Harper Collins for an ARC of The Rule of Fear in turn for an honest review.

Synopsis:
Sergeant Jack King is back on active duty after months off following a violent encounter. On the Met’s promotional fast-track scheme, King is headed straight for the top, but policing the streets is where his heart truly lies.

Tasked with cleaning up the notorious Grove Wood estate, King is determined to rise to the challenge. But it’s not just drug dealers and petty thugs his team have to worry about. Someone on the estate is preying on children, and they need to find the culprit, fast.

Soon King finds himself over his head: the local residents won’t play ball, his superiors want results yesterday, and he’s refusing to admit that he’s suffering from PTSD. As the pressures combine, the line between right and wrong starts to blur and King finds himself in a downward spiral. Only he can save himself – but is it already too late?

As a huge fan of Luke Delaney’s Sean Corrigan series I was delighted to be given the opportunity to read his new book. I found it a slight departure from the Corrigan series but not in a negative sense. Jack King is a complex character following a horrendous incident which we are given details of in the very first chapter; this has impacted on his personality, approach and relationships with others on a personal and professional basis.
At times I felt uncomfortable as a reader “observing” King’s practice as a serving officer but we are aware of what has led him to where he is and so there is an element of sympathy for his character.
At times I thought “is this believable – could it really happen?” and by the end of the book I do believe it could – PTSD is more out in the open now in our forces but a stigma remains and it is easy to see why individuals would want to deny that they were affected. While this book didn’t address the stigma on a moral or ethical basis it did hightlight the absolute impact that the condition can have on individuals.
The Rule of Fear is a dark and sometimes violent tale, it draws the reader into a mucky underworld that they may have trouble adjusting to – but for fans of crime/thrillers/police procedurals then this comes highly recommended.
My only criticism is that after the explosive opening chapter, the pace drops dramatically for the next couple of chapters before picking up again – hold on in there though as it is well worth while for what’s to come! Strong 4 stars from me!

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