Tony Parsons

The Murder Bag

"'...Parsons delivers what it says on the tin – and gets stuck in... '"


DC Max Wolfe starts his time in Homicide in at the deep end. One of the high flyers of the financial world has been found in his office – his throat cut from ear to ear. Who could want to kill him in such a barbaric and savage manner? On his clear desk sits a photograph of seven youths from the 80’s ready to take on and conquer the world. Soon it becomes clear that one by one these boys who became men and who are making a difference in the world are being targeted. But by whom? And why?

Wolfe knows that the answer lies in the past but as he begins down that path he has to keep one eye on the present as the killer is cleverer than anticipated and the man many are calling ‘Bob the Butcher’.is also using social media to highlight his crimes. As Wolfe sifts through the lies and half-truths he comes too close to the truth and nearly loses his own life and the case gets very personal.

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The great thing with Tony Parsons’ new crime novel is the fact that he simply gets on with the crime in hand. Unlike other literary writers of recent times who have segued on to the crime scene and have a more laid back stance to the crime novel, Parsons delivers what it says on the tin – and gets stuck in without ceremony. However, having said that Parsons does not sacrifice his cast for plot and the author superbly mixes three-dimensional characterisation with a thrilling plot. During the proceedings one character is dispatched and I was in mourning as I thought they would be a brilliant central character! You can tell from the way he has handled his first foray in to crime fiction that the author has great respect for the genre and is cognisant of its boundaries and yet Parsons’ tale never feels restricted. Parsons' crime debut isn’t by any means totally original but it certainly kept me intrigued and the book swirled around my head when I wasn’t reading it and the whole thing reverberated around my brain days after finishing it, even making me go back and re-reading the last few chapters to fully appreciate how Parsons pulls together the different strands of his story. DC Wolfe is determined and loyal and thankfully doesn’t have a drinking problem but his ‘Achilles’ Heel’ is definitely women. Wolfe is a great new addition to the crime arena and I look forward to getting re-acquainted in his next novel, but for now you lucky people have ‘The Murder Bag’ to look forward to! Parsons has been hiding his crime writing chops under a bushel and thank goodness he has finally brought out this latent talent and pushed in under the spotlight. ‘The Murder Bag’ is a stonking good read and you are certainly in for a treat.

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