Borrowed Time by David Mark

‘I’ve been covered in blood a lot of times, but it’s always warmer when it’s your own.’

A badly mutilated body has been discovered, in an area on the Essex borders which was once connected to a ruthless London gang in the 1970s. One of the victim’s hands is found nearby.  The number scrawled on the palm is the National Insurance number of Adam Nunn, a struggling family man.

The dead man, Larry Paris, was a private investigator hired by Adam Nunn to find out the identity of Adam’s birth parents.  Who would kill him, and why?  What can I write about this story without introducing spoilers? Very little.  But I can say that Larry Paris’s investigations had led him into some dangerous territory.  Adam Nunn is determined to find out more.

There are two main characters in this novel: Adam Nunn, and Irons, as gangland enforcer.  Both are seeking the truth.  Others have secrets they’d prefer to keep hidden.

I picked this book up and couldn’t put it down.  I found the character of Irons fascinating and almost impossible to read.  The near impossibility of reading Irons, and the self-interest (of some characters) kept me turning the pages.  What secrets would be revealed, and could Adam Nunn possibly be happy with the outcome?

This is the third of David Mark’s novels I’ve read, and I’ve not yet started on the McAvoy series.  But I will.  Highly recommended, if you enjoy gritty psychological thrillers.

Note: My thanks to NetGalley and Severn House Publishers for providing me with a free electronic copy of this book for review purposes.

Jennifer Cameron-Smith

NOTE: This book is available in Australia, but won’t be available in the USA and the UK until 7 July.