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Mackay, Malcolm - 'The Necessary Death of Lewis Winter'
Hardback: 256 pages (Jan. 2013) Publisher: Mantle ISBN: 023076620X

Calum MacLean is a young man who lives an isolated life in a small flat. He has few friends or acquaintances other than those directly associated with his specialist occupation. Calum is freelance - a killer for hire. He is very good at his job, very dedicated and loyal - excellent attributes and ones that are appreciated by the people who hire him. He spends time researching the movements of his targets and is very quick and clean.

Calum receives a telephone call one morning and is invited to a meeting by one of the partners of a local firm. Their regular employee is temporarily out of action and Calum is invited to fill in for his absence. He undertakes to fill part but not all of the jobs - he has no wish to be on the payroll, he likes his independence.

Calum's first job for the firm is to deal with a mutual acquaintance, Lewis Winter, a small time drug dealer who is thought to be encroaching on the firm's territory. He prepares for the work in his usual quiet and efficient manner but unfortunately Calum doesn't realise that some very powerful people decide that Lewis Winter must be avenged and suddenly the hunter becomes the hunted.

THE NECESSARY DEATH OF LEWIS WINTER is a first novel and a very impressive start. The writing style is short and sharp which I found very compelling. It is very fitting both for the subject matter and especially the main character, Calum, a young man with a terrible vocation but for whom, I can't help feeling sympathy for.

Two further books in the series are promised and I am looking forward to reading them.


Susan White, England
January 2013

More European crime fiction reviews can be found on the Reviews page.

last updated 12/01/2013 14:51