I have been dying to share my review of this book! Those who know me, know I love my crime fiction, especially Scottish crime fiction and Anna Smith is one of my all time favourite Scottish writers! I’d like to thank the author and the publisher, Quercus for this review copy.
Before I share my thoughts, here’s what the official blurb says:
Kerry Casey is still reeling from the bombshell that her lover, undercover cop Vinny Burns, has gone missing in Spain. She’s pregnant with his baby and will do anything to find him.
One night, driving along a country road, Kerry and her Uncle Danny are ambushed by gunmen. In the confusion that follows, shots are fired and two men are murdered. Kerry and Danny can only look on as the bodies are dragged from their assailant’s car and placed in their own.
The police arrive in minutes. With cocaine, dead bodies and guns in the car, it looks like an open-and-shut case.
Kerry’s been framed. She is forced to wait out her fate inside a women’s prison, still not knowing what has happened to Vinnie. On the outside the Casey gang are hunting down the men who did this to her and they will stop at nothing to find them.
Trapped is the 4th in the series featuring Kerry Casey, you can read it as a standalone but I’d urge you to go and read the full series because, well, it is just brilliant! This is also potentially the last in the series, so a few questions are answered that might be a spoiler for you if you start at the end. It all depends on how OCD you are about reading books in order, I guess! Anna Smith never fails to deliver and once again she delivers with bells on with this one! She has well and truly carved herself a place in my heart as the Scottish Queen of grit lit! Fans of Martina Cole and Kimberley Chambers will love this!
Kerry Casey is a reluctant gangster, she found herself unwittingly embroiled in the darker side of her family, when an incident at her mum’s funeral thrust her into a limelight that she really did not want to be a part of. The series has been about Kerry’s bid to turn the family business legit and you can guess that it hasn’t always been plain sailing!
As soon as I picked up this book I knew there was no chance I was going to be putting it back down anytime soon. Once again Anna Smith worked her magic, she had me well and truly trapped before the end of the first chapter!
She has created a cast of characters and placed them in a setting that will have you argue until you’re blue in the face the Casey’s are real and that you have read about these incidents in the tabloids and seen them in the news during the week. This is honestly how I feel when I read this series, I really do expect to see their story hit the headlines in the STV news at 6pm!
The plot is just paced to perfection. I found myself putting it down before grabbing it right back up again, unable to avoid the lure of the storyline; it is told from multiple points of view which allows you to get inside the heads of her characters and really get to know them, not that you would want to get to know them all for sure! There are some seriously unlikeable people in there!
In Trapped Anna gives more than nod to the very real, raw and brutal truth behind incarceration for many women, and she really digs deep into some dark social issues and leaves her reader thinking long after the book is put down.
Kerry has always been a bit of a reluctant gangster and facing life behind bars was never what she had envisaged for herself. Anna draws her perfectly, just the right mix of emotional, shrewd and focused, there is most definitely a real human touch to her and the rest of the characters in the novel.
Anna also touches upon the shame of Scottish sectarianism and uses the links with terrorist/organised crime across the water in Northern Ireland to furnish this element of the story line. And in doing so she paints an authentic picture of the dark side of some of the less salubrious drinking dens and areas in our city.
Anna’s background in journalism is evident, she can take a whole pile of words and turn them into something living and breathing; she brings her characters and her stories alive. There is no way you can be a journalist and cover the stories she has, without gaining a wealth of expertise when it comes to creating believable characters.
I think there is a little bit of Anna in all of her characters across all of her books. I’d really urge you to go to one of Anna’s book events and you will see what I mean, the writer behind the stories is every bit as fascinating as the lives of the characters she creates.
Do yourself a favour and go read this now!
Trapped is available to purchase from all good bookshops