Book Review: Dark City Blue by Luke Preston

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If you like characters who never sleep and only ever pass out to get some rest, then this is the book for you.

This is a fast-paced story and the body count starts almost immediately and doesn’t let up right until the very end. It has a very gritty feel and it is set in a bleak, dystopian version of Melbourne, Australia that as someone who lives there I don’t recognise, thank goodness.

The plot is a little cliched; veteran, weary, jaded cop stumbles across police corruption bringing himself, his family and anyone on his side into harm’s way, only to discover that it’s those closest to him who are the bad guys.

But Luke Preston’s writing style is so punchy, so jagged, so minimalist, conveying only what he needs to to get the message across, that it feels like something different. I’ve certainly never read anything written this way before and it makes for a nice change. It took me out of my comfort zone and I was happy to stay there for the length of the novel.

The ending leaves it open for a sequel – or even several – but the author would have to up the ante on plot next time to beat this effort.

3 stars

*First published on Goodreads 15 February 2013

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