As a blogger you get lots of requests to review books, some are just links sent out en masse, some don’t even look to see your preferred genre and some don’t even mention your blog. So the requests that have a personal touch and those who have taken the time to look at your blog are always warmly welcome! When I opened up the email from Rob I couldn’t resist accepting his request! Seriously it was the funniest email I have ever received in relation to my blog and it was clear that Rob had taken the time to have a wee look at what I do before he sent the email off! So to the “happy dancing” man who made me laugh on a day at work that was driving me insane – thank you!
A thrilling read to grip you from the first page to the last sentence.
Nothing is as it seems …
The heat of the Florida summer is relentless. Lucas is coasting to retirement in a mundane Florida police precinct. His world falls apart when a brutal serial killer codenamed Mechanic lands on his patch.
Three years ago they thought Mechanic was dead. But Mechanic is very much alive and the savage ritualistic murders continue. No family is safe from the threat of slaughter at this sadistic killer’s hands.
Mechanic is always one step ahead and Lucas is forced to operate outside the law.
Who can he trust?
Now before I start my review, I will let you into a wee secret (one I didn’t even tell Rob when I agreed to review his book) American crime/detective/psychological thrillers don’t always do it for me, I usually prefer my crime to be UK-based but there was something about the blurb for this one along with the email that compelled me to accept!
Well lets just say that I am so glad that I gave “Those That Remain” a chance, it had me gripped right from the very start and it didn’t let me go all the way through! What a compelling and thrilling roller coaster of a read it was!
This is the debut novel from Rob Ashman and I’m delighted to see that it is the first in three books! We start off the book with the first chapter set in the present day when Detective Lucas has just returned to work and it is clear that he has been through something very traumatic; FBI Agents are with him ensuring that he has been fully debriefed and ready to be back at work but we realise that he just wants rid of them and to get on with it; they leave his office and he opens an envelope addressed to him – the mechanic is back! How can this be – The Mechanic died three years ago! And so the story begins!
The Mechanic struck me with the fear I can tell you; my imagination was going into overdrive through this book; it had my heart pounding and the pace was fast and so so twisted! In fact the twists and turns in this book had me like a corkscrew by the time I was finished! One minute you think you have worked it out then boom! Then when you do work it out the twists just keep on jumping out at you – there is no escape!
Despite the fast pace I felt you still got time to know the characters; Lucas is a determined cop, he’s not ready just to sit this one out and is hell-bent on bringing The Mechanic down; he has some great one-liners in the book and his sense of humour is dry and often directed at others who put obstacles in his way. I had this picture of him in my head – a slightly overweight cop with a bag of donuts in one hand and his wife’s salad in the other! His partner Bassano, is the ladies man of the duo and it’s a wonder he gets any policing done as his mind seems to be ruled by his lower half 😉 But don’t let that fool you folks – Bassano has a key part to play in this book. I am looking forward to seeing Lucas develop over the next two books – there are some hidden depths to that man that I’m keen to see uncovered! Harper, who was the original detective on The Mechanic case is also a well written character, first we think he is simply the stereotyped “burnt out” alcoholic cop but he has a lot to offer the new investigation and is a key player for Lucas.
Those That Remain, while clearly a crime/psychological thriller is very much based around the themes of triggers to psychotic episodes and the impact that early experiences can have on individuals if they are not given the opportunity to address and deal with them and of course the devastating consequence on those who cross their path!
I think I can safely say that Rob has won me over with the first in this new series. Those That Remain ticked my boxes – a compelling whirlwind of a read that was so twisted that I felt I’d been wrapped around a corkscrew at the end; it keeps you guessing throughout and it is a brilliant set up for the next in the series! I would really recommend that you read this book and soon!
Rob Ashman – thank you for sending me that email – now hurry up and get book number 2 published!
Rob Ashman is married to Karen and has two grown up daughters. Originally from South Wales now settled in North Lincolnshire.
Like all good Welsh valley boys he worked for the National Coal Board when he left school at sixteen and went to University at the tender age of twenty-three when the pit closures began to bite. Since then he’s worked in a variety of manufacturing and consulting roles, that was until he had the idea to publish a book.
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