Friday, 20 April 2012

The Four Last Things

Title: The Four Last Things
Author: Andrew Taylor

Number of pages: 351

Started: 18 April 2012

Finished: 20 April 2012

Opening words: All his life Eddie had believed in Father Christmas. In childhood his belief had been unthinking and literal; he clung to it for longer than his contemporaries and abandoned it only with regret. In its place came another conviction, another Father Christmas: less defined than the first and therefore less vulnerable.  

Plot summary: Little Lucy Appleyard is snatched from her child minder’s on a cold winter afternoon, and the nightmare begins. When Eddie takes her home to beautiful, child-loving Angel, he knows he’s done the right thing. But Lucy’s not like their other visitors, and unwittingly she strikes through Angel’s defences to something both vulnerable and volatile at the core. To the outside world Lucy has disappeared into a black hole with no clues to her whereabouts…until the first grisly discovery in a London graveyard. More such finds are to follow, all at religious sites, and, in a city haunted by religion, what do these offerings signify? All that stands now between Lucy and the final sacrifice are a CID sergeant on the verge of disgrace and a woman cleric – Lucy’s parents – but how can they hope to halt the evil forces that are gathering around their innocent daughter?

What I thought: This was a readable book, but one which gave me mixed feelings. It was a decent enough plot and it was pretty well written, but it was one of those books that involved two different, but connected storylines developing – and I rather preferred one thread to the other. Perhaps that was partly because of the subject matter, I didn’t like the more sinister side with Eddie and Angel.

This book was the first in a trilogy, although apparently they can be read in any order. I would be interested in reading another in the trilogy, but if I didn’t find that an entirely comfortable read then I would move on.

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