The Night Crew, by John Sandford

The Night Crew is a team led by Anna Batory, who roam the streets of LA in the early hours while scanning police radio traffic in order to be able to get to crime scenes quickly and film reports that they can sell to TV networks. Following one busy night, one of Anna's crew is murdered, and it looks like the killer has Anna in his sights.

I'd not made any special attempt to get hold of this book because it's not a Davenport novel, and I'd previously been disappointed with Dead Watch. But I came across it in the charity shop so thought it would be worth a try.

It's not as good as the Davenport/Flowers books, but it was pretty good - nice scenario and good writing. The characters have Sandford's mark, and were good enough that I think he could do more books (although I think on his website it says he won't).

The plot was a bit conventional; you knew it was going to end up with Anna and the killer in a one-to-one situation, and you knew who would come out on top. Also there structure was a bit unimaginative: they move from one lead to another, each person they speak to providing a clue that moves them to a new suspect, and it felt a little bit of a treadmill. There were a few loose ends, as by the time the book's finished, you didn't really get to find out explanations for why certain of the people they'd come into contact with had acted the way they had.

One expression he used in the book which wasn't one I'd come across before was when someone gave a "shave and a haircut" knock at the door - liked that one.

All in all it was a worthwhile read.

Completed : 29-May-2011

[nickoh] [2011 books] [books homepage]