Pariah is a well constructed, fast paced tale of Callum Doyle’s descent into his own personal hell. Not exactly the favourite in his precinct, Doyle suddenly finds himself in a world of isolation when a string of events turn out to be connected and Doyle is warned that anyone he contacts or associates with will die. He quickly moves out of his home and into a hotel room but unable to work or be with his family soon eats away at him. He has to decide how far he’ll go to get his life back – and if the only people who can help him are the people he’d normally be working against, he has to decide if he is willing to sell his soul?
Right the way through the book this was a guaranteed four star read for me for sure. It was fast paced with great characters, fantastic dialogue, scene after scene of pure grit. Jackson can write – he certainly has a bright future in crime writing if this is anything to go by.
But the ending… Oh the DISAPPOINTMENT. This was a book that built and built and built with tension and drama and frustration throughout. The lengths Doyle had to go to protect his family and try and clear his name from suspicion as the deaths piled up around him, all seemingly connected with him, were all steering towards an explosive ending. It didn’t come. Instead, the ending felt too convenient, too much like something had needed to be conjured to pull the loose ends together and then an idea had cropped up and it had been a case of “Oh, this’ll do.”
I sat in a coffee shop and read the final pages and then closed the book with a petulant “OH!”
However, Jackson really can put together a fantastic tale and I understand there’s more of Doyle to come. So I can only hope that in book two, the ending matches the stellar setup of the rest of the book. Anything else is a travesty considering Jackson’s high stakes, high risk, high drama style of writing.
(Book source: reviewer received a copy in exchange for a fair and honest review)