John Barlow has accomplished something with me. Reviews I’ve read in other places say the same thing. I don’t normally favor books in the present tense. But since I do like British crime novels, I decided to give it a try.

I was soon lost in the world of John Ray, son of crime boss Tony Ray, and the, I guess you would call him, the white sheep of the family. He’d been through college, brilliantly, and had an accountant’s degree.

He had come home after his brother was murdered and his father had had a stroke and taken over the family business, a used car dealership transforming it into a legitimate enterprise, even winning an award for being good at it. His girl friend Denise, is a Detective Constable, a copper.

Now things were going sour. His friend, and salesman at the business, is missing and accused of murdering a prostitute, her body found in the boot of one of his cars, dumped away from the business. A stash of counterfeit bills is found in the car as well.

John is sure his friend is innocent and finds himself playing cop to find that killer. An old gangster friend of his brother’s turns up and wants the killer, whether it be John’s friend or someone else, promising death for the killer.

HOPE ROAD is the first in a new series, the LS9 crime series, and I enjoyed it tremendously. Barlow gives us a few twists and turns along the way to keep us on our feet. I look forward to new entries and where he takes the series.

Recommended. Here’s a link to purchase it.