Kate London’s Gallowstree Lane is a tense, gritty procedural thriller set in the UK capital’s less salubrious streets.

Opening with a funeral in November 2016 and panning back to the graphic death of teenager Spencer Cardoso, as witnessed by best mate 15-year-old Ryan, the novel is fast-paced and tautly written, filled with the kind of detail that one might expect from an author who, in real-life, was a Met detective.

Protagonists Sarah Collins and Lizzie Griffiths are authentic characters, dealing with conflicting loyalties and ambitions in their bid to find Spencer’s killer. There are larger forces at play, however; not least Perseus, a police operation that’s taken two years of DI Kieran Shaw’s life – he’s certainly not interested in having that derailed to solve the murder of a lowly teen.

From the start, London’s writing draws the reader in. We care about her cast of excellently honed characters. We believe in the world she creates – the events depicted sadly too familiar, the staging of Spencer’s death bringing to mind the 1993 murder of Stephen Lawrence.

An outstanding piece of crime fiction.





Gallowstree Lane | Kate London | Corvus | 7 February 2019 | hardback |

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Acknowledgements: This review is published as part of the virtual book tour arranged by Anne Cater of Random Things Tours. Thank you to Anne and the publisher for supplying a book proof and jacket image. All opinions are our own. All rights reserved.





Also of interest:A stylish read: West Camel’s Attend‘; ‘The Lost Man‘; ‘Delia Owen’s Where the Crawdad’s Sing’; ‘The Story Keeper, Anna Mazzola’s Gothic novel‘; ‘Midland‘; ‘A Greater God‘; ‘Lisa Ko’s The Leavers, Dialogue’s brilliant debut; ‘We should all be feminists’; The not-so-invisible woman: 150 greats in their own words’;RW Kwon’s The Incendiaries’; ‘Beautiful words – The Language of Secrets’; ‘Beauty in translation – Roxanne Bouchard’s French Canadian noir‘; ‘How Penguin learned to fly – Allen Lane and the Original “Penguin Ten”’; Dorothy L. Sayer’s Busman’s Holiday – Romek Marber for Penguin Crime (book covers we love).

This review is © 2019 by The Literary Shed. All rights reserved. All opinions are our own. We welcome your feedback and comments. If you wish to reproduce this piece, please do contact us to request permission. Thank you so much.