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  • A gritty, thrilling debut

    With an opening line of “Patrick Owen managed seven years at Highfields Secondary School without punching a pupil in the face” you just know this is going to be an “interesting” read and it doesn’t disappoint. Paul Read captures magnificently Patrick’s disillusionment with teaching, the daily grime of teaching disinterested students in a tough part of the city, the difficulty he has in coming to terms with his failed marriage and separation from his young son and the struggle he has with just getting up in the morning but when he gets involved with someone he probably shouldn’t, things become a whole lot worse. The story captured me from the very first line and didn’t let up until the very end. The style of writing is natural and easy flowing. The characters are interesting, well developed and believable, scarily so in some cases, with the setting of the school and its surroundings feeling authentic. The story is quite a dark and sombre one but the author pops in humour which made me laugh out loud several times and provided a little light relief from what is a gritty thriller. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and will definitely seek out further work by Paul Read in the future if this debut is anything to go by and I must thank the publisher, Legend Times Group via the Legend 100 Club, for my copy in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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