A locked room. A dead body. A secret that went to the grave.
When retired police officer Finlay Shaw is found dead in a locked room, everyone thinks it’s suicide. But disgraced detective William ‘Wolf’ Fawkes isn’t so sure.
Together with his former partner Detective Emily Baxter and private detective Edmunds, Wolf’s team begin to dig into Shaw’s early days on the beat. Was Shaw as innocent as he seemed? Or is there more to his past than he’d ever let on?
But not everyone wants Wolf back – and as his investigation draws him ever deeper into police corruption, it will not only be his career on the line – but the lives of those he holds closest as well…
My rating might come as a surprise to you and I can tell you, I wasn’t expecting to give anything lower than a 5 star rating myself because my god, I loved the first and second novel in this trilogy SO MUCH. But, yeah here it is.. my opinion of this novel is colored by a few small details that made such a mark on my reading experience that it became too difficult to see past it.
You see, I have the feeling that the main thing I will remember about Endgame in a few months time will be my frustration and struggle at the start of the novel and which lasted way longer than I wanted. The author made it clear that he doesn’t want to rehash what happened in book 1 and 2 and that you really need to read the series in order, but guess what, I did read the first two novels (it’s been 2 years since I read about Wolf though) and I was STILL at a loss about the characters, about what happened in the past and the relationships among the members of the team, as there really isn’t any reference point to before. I didn’t like this feeling that it’s on the tip of your tongue but just out of reach. Why was Baxter so mad at Wolf? It didn’t feel it was merited. I vaguely remembered how book 1 ended but that didn’t ring a bell at all. And was Christian a character from the first novel too because I didn’t remember him? The only one who I really had no trouble remembering was good ‘ol Edmunds. So yes, this irritation overshadowed my reading pleasure quite a bit. What didn’t help either was that my ecopy had some poor formatting because there weren’t any paragraphs dividing the scenes, there wasn’t any blank space. One minute someone’s handing over a coat. A brief fullstop and two words later someone’s smiling in a camera in a very different scene. That constant change without any warning at all took lots of energy to follow the story. I’m sure the finished copy won’t have this though so you don’t have to take this into account, but it’s where I’m coming from ;-).
As for the storyline itself, the suspected non-suicide of Finlay formed the base of an entertaining mystery, especially since he was found in a locked room. It’s clear that the answer must have something to do with one night a lot of years ago but it takes a while to get to the crux. In this story finding out the suspected murderer of Finlay didn’t form the biggest thrill for me, no it was actually seeing how Wolf would find a way to prove it. The last part of the novel, with a sublime twist, was therefore definitely the best part.
Overall, this was a good read but it didn’t match the first two novels (except for that amazing twist). It’s also fairly different reading experience compared to the previous novels where lots of people are targeted and plenty of grisly murders, where the focus here is on Finlay (there’s definitely no big cinematic show here). If you’re going to read this, then I certainly advise you to read the three novels around the same time, I’m sure this will be a whole other experience then!
I received a free ecopy of this novel via Netgalley from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.