Book review: The Knives by Richard T Kelly

The Knives

Reviewer Miranda Spary is gripped by this cutting political tale.

Review by: Miranda Spary

Real life is often stranger than fiction – as anyone following British (or American) politics in recent months will attest. Against this backdrop, captivating political thriller The Knives by Richard T Kelly seems not hopelessly fanciful but wholly believable.

Home Secretary David Blaylock drives the novel’s plot. From modest beginnings, Blaylock rose through the ranks at military academy Sandhurst and served in Bosnia and Northern Ireland; now he’s climbed up the ladder politically and is seen to be made of solid stuff. Quick to resolve problems and unafraid to tackle the various ne’er-do-wells that cross his path, he’s a man of action. But inside him violence simmers; his inner hothead has already caused problems in his personal life, destroying his marriage – and when some nasty right-wing extremists start creating problems, the heat is really on.

The magic of this read is the richness of its characters – they’re all so alive, cleverly portrayed with an accuracy that calls to mind the drama enacted in real-life Britain lately. The book has been a massive hit in the UK, and whether you’re interested in politics or not, its mysteries will have you hooked and keep you guessing to the very last page – you won’t see the ending coming.

Like this review? Read more book reviews by Miranda Spary:

Book review: The Eagle Tree by Ned Hayes

Book review: The Reader on the 6.27

Book review: The High Mountains of Portugal


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