10 April 2008

BYE BYE BABY, Lauren Crow

I gave a progress report a couple of days ago, so in a way I am just reporting that I've finished the book and letting you know what I thought of it. I will repeat a little from earlier post.

Three months after Mike Sherriff of Louth was found brutally murdered in Lincoln, another man is found dead in Hackney Marshes in a public toilet. Both men are in their early 40s. The MO for these otherwise unconnected but grisly murders appears to be the same. Scotland Yard is putting together a high level taskforce to deal with both cases under DCI Jack Hawksworth. Jack gets to choose his own team called Operation Danube and their headquarters will be on the 12th floor of Tower block overlooking the Thames.

There are interesting tensions in the members of the Operation Danube team: Kate Carter, as sharp as a tack, holds a real torch for Hawksworth, despite the fact that she is engaged to be married. Kate sees any other female as a rival and almost stalks Hawksworth after hours. She particularly sees DS Sarah Jones, a rather dowdy young woman who is an expert on HOLMES, as a threat to the boss's good books. Jack Hawksworth himself appears to have a history of flouting the rules.

This is a very long book, and I feel that it really needed some judicious editing, to bring it down from 500 pages to a more manageable size. It took quite a while to get going, even though there were 2 murders in close succession. However the various threads are brought together well, and the scenarios are quite believable. The final denouement, from the point where we put the pieces together (about 150 pages from the end), to final conclusion is just too long and really tempted me to skim read. Having said that there is no doubt that Lauren Crow should write another, but I'm not sure I want a sequel to this one. I like Kate Carter but wasn't really too taken with the character of Jack Hawksworth.

Lauren Crow is an Australian author quite well known for her fantasy fiction under the name of Fiona McIntosh.

My rating: 4.2


Anonymous said...

Just finished Bye Bye Baby. It has its gripping moments, but generally it strains the reader's credibility— especially super-serial killer and amazing drug-artist, Anne. A real phoenix, that one!

The dialogue is a bit too pat; would benefit from some ers and ahs and other signs of discomfiture or other emotion.

The female characters, aside from aforementioned super-woman, were convincingly portrayed. The minor male characters were okay, but Jack comes across as a bit of a sap. Okay, so he's handsome, but do we have to be told so often?

The story is too long, needs serious editing.

On the scale used, my rating 2.8

Kerrie said...

Sunnie's review is at


Blog Widget by LinkWithin