“I am a violent man, Miss Fox,” Garton-Jones said, without bravado or inflection. “I can − and will − do whatever is necessary to control this estate. Remember that.”
A self-defence expert with a motorbike and an attitude, Charlie Fox doesn’t need to go looking for trouble. It generally finds her. House-sitting for a friend seems like an easy favour at first but the house in question is in the Lavender Gardens estate. Teenage gangs are running riot and Charlie’s desperate neighbours have been forced to employ an expensive − and ruthless − security firm to apply rough justice where the legal kind has failed. The situation gets even uglier when a young Asian boy is fatally wounded in what appears to be a racially motivated shooting.
Caught in the middle of an urban battlefield, Charlie’s more than able to take care of herself but then she comes face to face with a spectre from her army past. As the tensions rise, lives will depend on Charlie working out just who she can really trust . . .
What I liked: A connection with the heroine. She's kick-ass but not perfect. More along just being human with everyone's problems. While ruthless, she has a code to only go as far as she needs too. Ms Sharp also provides more info about Charlie's past, which so frustrated me in the first novel. The descriptive narrative of the setting was great. I picture England with lots of greenery, castles and the upper class, I guess. What I got was an in depth look at the slums, poverty and real life. The world building was all too real.
What I didn't like: there were bunches and bunches of twists and turns but I knew the "bad guy" right away. I felt there were way too many characters put forth to take the attention away from the antagonist.
This is a good series. I found a connection with Charlie and wasn't satisfied until I read all the books available.