I have rarely read a book which has so many possible motives for one crime.
When two people are killed in a shop fire on Brick Lane the possible motives are endless, bigotry, jealousy, hatred, anti-Semitism, racism, revenge, anti-gentrification all of them could be the reason the shop was torched, and worryingly they are all realistic motives in today’s society.
So, DI Maya Rahman has her work cut out, but she is the ideal Officer for the job. As a 41 year old Bangladeshi who grew up on, and around, Brick Lane she is used to the mixing pot of a society that live and trades on the famous street. She even knows some of the residents who live near the fire.
The investigation is hindered by the damage at the shop. The fire has destroyed everything and the bodies are not easy to retrieve.
The fire happened as a Flash Mob descended on the street dancing to loud house music. Could this be a coincidence or are the two things related.
The investigation follows Maya and her team as they track through the world of young people who follow a cause on line, for no other reason than the promise of a bit of cash and some free drugs. Are they being manipulated to cause a distraction or are they responsible for the fire.
They encounter homeless refugees, some of which are young orphans, and see the way they are used by some of the lower forms of life in the community who are either too clever, or too scared, to do their own dirty work.
The story revolves around the investigation into the fire and the deaths that occurred in it, but the main story for me is the story of life on Brick Lane.
I have a feeling this book gets very close to the truth of some of the matters that involve the people of Brick Lane, and other suburbs of the bigger cities in the UK.
Generations of traders struggling to make a living in an ever increasing society that buys into the latest fad of “artisan” traders and over inflated property prices.
And of course, where money is the driver crime is not far behind.
I really enjoyed this book and was surprised to find it’s is the second in a series. I’m off to find the first now and then I shall look forward to the third.
Publishers: HQ Harper Collins
Publishing date: 30thMay 2019