Luther: The Calling by Neil Cross (5 out of 5)


As usual, I’m behind the times. I waited for YEARS to watch the BBC series that this book is derived from. YEARS. Why? Because I kept hearing about it over and over and over from my friend and former coworker Felicia (not to mention my friend and coworker Dave M). She does a pretty good imitation of Idris doing his Luther form of address. Dave didn’t drill it into my head as much as Lady F did, but enough that I was not going to be watching it for awhile. Of course, that was BEFORE I saw several vehicles starring Idris Elba. Most specifically, THE WIRE. If you haven’t watched either, shame on you! Do so. Not that that’s over with, onto the review.

I went through a real Netflix binge over the summer. Luther was one of the shows I watched start to finish (True Detective Season 2 was another- AVOID at all costs) and loved. Then I kicked myself for waiting on it so long. I ordered the book in (although it was hard to get) and bought it, then it sat. Too much going on, so a few books sat for weeks on my table in the living room. Then I had the mother of all weeks starting out a few weeks back and picked it up. And couldn’t put it down. Neil Cross, you need to write another book in here. And to Felicia and Dave- I should have listened years ago!

DCI John Luther is known for many things: His intensity, his brilliance, his obsessional detail on some matters, and he’s consumed at times with a fury that can only result in dangerous things happening- things on the wrong side of the law that he’s sworn to uphold. To those who are familiar with the TV show, this takes place in the past and pushed him over that teetering edge. His marriage is one of the first casualties of the case. The case is a serial child killer who seems to have no MO. Bodies continue to pile up, and Luther continues to come closer to the edge from which he can’t come back. This book has it all- a sympathetic lead, multiple law enforcement allies and enemies, a wife who’s clearly had enough and can’t take anymore, despite loving her husband, a string of child abductions, and a new case that rips the heart of London out, and tears the town in two – those on the side of the law fighting the monster and those who are accusing the law of letting the monster go (more specifically, they blame Luther). Too many twists and turns occur here to put this book down without finishing. And the conclusion of this case- and this novel- sets up the Luther we see in the BBC show. So if you read this before you watch the show, great. If you read this after you watch the show, great. Just read it! I’ll warn you- NOT for the faint of heart. There are several scenes where the violence and grisliness may be a bit much, so you Quaker types, keep your bonnets tied tight and move onto a Rosamunde Pilcher book. This is for the diehard fans who can handle the gore. If you can, don’t hesitate- pick this up and read it.

~ by generationgbooks on March 7, 2016.

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