Before I share my thoughts, here’s what the official blurb says:
Detective Constable Sam Shepard knows first-hand the desperation of the scavengers- she’s got the scars to prove it. Plus a skull in the sand. And a body pulled from the ocean. The undercurrents from one morning’s madness are far-reaching. Who else will be caught in the backwash? Can Sam stem the tide?
“This is a 300+ page cracker of a contemporary crime fiction novel set in and around Dunedin … A compelling whodunnit with all the usual twists and turns so loved by readers of the crime fiction genre… “
I love this series, I bloody love Detective Constable Sam Shepherd and I love the brilliantly clever mind of Vanda Symon. I could close my eyes and hear her read this book to me!
The opening chapter provides a perfect scene setting with that vivid description of the looters out on the beach scavenging what they could from the container ship that had grounded. Poor Sam, trying to have a chilled out weekend off she comes off a cropper as she gets caught up in trying to stop the looters and is left with a pretty sore face for her troubles. But immediately I was in there with Sam, I had my sleeves rolled up and was all for getting this sorted alongside her. Because that’s what this character does to me, she engages me, she makes me laugh and she takes me right alongside her throughout the story…or you know what…that’s what Vanda Symon has done by creating a character so down to earth and realistic that she really could be one of your best pals!
Sam is fast becoming one of my favourite fictional detectives, she might be short but she’s got a whole lot of attitude. I like her direct, straight to the point manner, her sense of humour and often dry wit makes me think she’d be pretty fun to hang out with.
In this novel her relationship, such as it is, with Paul Frost, might be just about to be ramped up a notch or two but is that what she really wants. Her relationships with others makes me smile, she’s frank and brutally raw at times and there is just a sense that Sam Shepherd builds a little bit of a wall around herself for protection. But her best friend Maggie is never shy of telling her when she thinks she is being a bit of an arse about things.
With a brilliantly crafted plot, Containment moves along at a rapid pace keeping you on your toes all the way through, with some brilliantly researched scenes, especially the underwater death related ones…you might want to eat first guys, this had me hooked until the very last page. And as I said at the start with that outstanding sense of place created, Vanda Symon has brought Dunedin into the hearts of many with this series!
Roll on book number four!
Containment can be purchased via