Author : Amer Anwar
Title : Western Fringes
Pages : 458
Publisher : Edurus Books
Publication date : March 30, 2017
A Sikh girl on the run. A Muslim ex-con who has to find her. A whole heap of trouble.
Southall, West London.
Recently released from prison, Zaq Khan is lucky to land a dead-end job at a builders’ yard. All he wants to do is keep his head down and put his past behind him.
But when he has to search for his boss’s runaway daughter it quickly becomes apparent he’s not simply dealing with family arguments and arranged marriages as he finds himself caught up in a deadly web of deception, murder and revenge.
With time running out and pressure mounting, can he find the missing girl before it’s too late? And if he does, can he keep her – and himself – alive long enough to deal with the people who want them both dead?
Western Fringes won the CWA Debut Dagger Award and it’s easy to see why. Amer Anwar is a great new voice in the crime thriller genre!
Zaq has recently been released from prison and now works at a builder’s yard. But then he’s forced to find the boss’ missing daughter and Zaq’s hopes of keeping his head down and putting his past behind him are firmly dashed. Soon, he finds himself caught up in a web of lies, deceit, murder and revenge.
I really enjoyed how something as innocent as a girl running away from home to avoid an arranged marriage easily turned into something far more dark and sinister. Also, we’re not dealing with detectives here, or investigators. Zaq is an ordinary guy who gets caught up in things he really shouldn’t have to deal with. He may be an ex-con but he’s a genuinely good and decent guy who will do anything to avoid going back to prison. As he looks for missing Rita, he relies purely on his intelligence, instinct and wit. And of course our unlikely hero has a trusty sidekick, Jags. Their friendship and banter often made me smile and rather quickly I found myself rooting for these underdogs.
There is a fair bit of violence so beware if that’s not really your thing. However, Western Fringes has an incredibly well constructed plot with twists and turns. It offers everything you look for in a good crime thriller story. I had no idea how the story would unfold. The characterisation is immensely well done. I love that the author added some Punjabi which really added an extra layer to realism and authenticity. Its urban setting and multi-cultural feel was quite different from anything I’ve read before. With lots of action, sinister motives and a host of credible characters, I promise you won’t be bored!
Many thanks to the author for my copy, which I chose to review honestly!
Western Fringes is available to buy now!