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The Hanging Shed

by Gordon Ferris

Reviewed by Jessica Swann, ABC 1062 on March 1, 2012

The Hanging Shed

The hanging shed is set in Glasgow in 1946, just after the second world war.  Douglas Brodie a returned veteran and now a crime reporter for a London newspaper gets a desperate call from a boyhood friend he has not heard from in years.  It seems that Hugh Donovan is on death row in Glasgow for raping and murdering a young boy.  Donovan wants Brodie to investigate and find the real murderer, as he maintains his innocence, at least to Brodie.

What’s harder to disprove is the evidence which all points to Hugh Donovan being the murderer and probably deserving his trip to the gallows.  As Brodie begins his investigation, he teams up with Samantha Campbell, Donovans advocate, who is in the process of lodging an appeal  – but time is short before Donovan is to be hanged.
Brodie and Samantha pull out all stops to fins any scrap of evidence that will cast doubt on the conviction.  Brodie, an ex-policeman in Glasgow before the war, seems to have a knack of getting to the bottom of things and he trawls the mean streets of the Gorbals and the green hills of western Scotland in his search for the truth. “What Samantha and Brodie find is an unholy alliance of church, police and Glasgow’s deadliest razor gang, happy to slaughter to protect their dark secrets.”

“As time runs out for the condemned man, and the tally of murdered innocents rises Brodie reverts to his wartime role as a trained killer. It’s them or him…”

If you are fan of English crime then this is the book for you.  I have read some Stuart MacBride, (another Scottish crime writer with a hint of humour in his writing and liked them) now I have found a new crime author to sink my teeth into. I will definitely be reading his earlier books and the new Brodie book when it is released later this year.

Publisher: Platypus
Year published: 2011
Jessica Swann, ABC 1062‘s rating: 10 out of 10

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