A Book Review – Eva Dolan: Tell No Tales


Eva Dolan wrote one of my favourite books of 2014 – Long Way Home – for which I wrote a review on this neglected blog – you should be able to find it on here somewhere – and my reward for said review was getting sent a copy of Ms Dolan’s second book to feature Zigic & Ferreira: Tell No Tales.

Long Way Home was a remarkable read combing social commentary with a cracking whodunit and my worry was that Dolan wouldn’t be able to match the heights obtained in her second book. I was so worried about this that I put off reading the book on several occasions until I just bit the bullet and cracked on with it. I needn’t have worried, Tell No Tales is another first rate read and a book very much of its moment which the way events are developing in the UK will ensure that it remains relevant and essential.

Dolan this times focusses on not only the immigrant population of Peterborough as she did in Long Way Home but also finds time to write about the various aspects of British right wing politics and how they gained strength in mainstream politics over the last couple of years. They have parliamentary seats are working to maintain this new found power in the face of an upcoming General Election. Recent reports in the press reported on how the far right is in disarray, the BNP and NF have fallen apart and whilst the headline news is great for the people who have fought against such political foes the reality is that the right wing haven’t gone away and as in such difficult times faced by them before they will regroup and fight again and it’s important that this isn’t ignored by the media.

Dolan seems to have an uncanny knack of identifying and then writing about issues that are current and matter to a great many people. She does this in a direct manner but doesn’t take sides in the debate. She is fair and honest and whilst this might not make her popular with certain sections of the population it does make her an important writer because I do believe that popular culture can play an important part in educating and informing society and Dolan’s work in both this book and Long Way Home has done its part to fulfil this objective.

Before you think “Oh Gruffsdad, you make it sound so boring! Why on earth would I want to read that?” then stop, you needn’t worry as Dolan is a thriller writer of the highest calibre and Tell No Tales is a terrific thriller. The storylines  – a hit and run which is possibly racial motivated and a serial killer  who is killing members of the BME community – race along with each development in the different cases keeping you turning the pages and I raced through the book desperate to know how and indeed if all the threads tied together.

The characters of Zigic & Ferreira along with their supporting cast are given the space to develop, we learn more about them and we are given the chance to care about the characters and identify with them which for me is an essential aspect of any crime book series.

Dolan has fast become one of my favourite crime writers and the Zigic and Menedes series ranking highly in my list of favourite crime series with Tell No Tales leaving me eager for the next book!

Tell No Tales is out now and thank you so much to Eva Dolan and to Harvill Secker for sending me a copy to review.