Self-published (17th July 2016)
Some people try to get away with murder. Christopher Hart is just trying to get away from it. Haunted by the violent death of a close friend, Christopher returns to his home town of Croydon to try and get his life back on track. However his dreams of an easy life are shattered when an old flame contacts him claiming she has been convicted of a murder that she doesn't even remember. Reluctant to get involved but unable to refuse Christopher is exposed to the dark underside of Croydon - a world of drugs, crime and dishonesty. Can Christopher pick his way through the lies to find the real killer before the killer finds him? His only help comes from the flirtatious local web-journalist, Ruth Withers. But even she is hiding something...
Gareth Endean has written such a beguiling character in Christopher Hart. I've only just finished the book and I'm already itching to find out what he's up to now, I find him that intriguing. Christopher is the unlikely hero after solving the murder of his friend in America, and seems powerless to turn down old flame B's cry for help. It's this readiness to see the good in others, combined with the dog-with-a-bone attitude towards solving the murder which I find so appealing.
Several other supporting characters appear, all play their parts well, but I must just mention B. I really like her and I hope she might make an appearance in a future Christopher Hart novel. I've never been to Croydon but the area was described in colourful glory so I was able to easily picture the surroundings that the various characters found themselves in.
The plot itself is intelligently written and there are enough twists that even a seasoned crime reader like myself didn't anticipate them all. The story flows well, the conversations feel natural and the book is so hard to put down. There is some violence (nothing graphic), but there are some light scenes too, so the book feels well balanced throughout. When the murderer is eventually revealed, I was truly astonished; I did not see that coming at all!