“Fiction is the lie through which we tell the truth”
– Albert Camus –
Contemporary fiction feels real.
It roots us in places we are familiar with, in a world order (or disorder) that resonates with our own experience … it reads like a news report of events that echo in our consciousness. And the more familiar the story feels, the more believable it is to the reader.
The events of 7/7 are scarily familiar and recent enough to build the most credible of foundations for a fast-paced fictional (or is it?) race for clues, evidence and conclusions.
David Videcette is a writer in the know. First-hand experience lends a particular credence to ‘The Theseus Paradox‘, a high-octane thriller which feels all too close to home.
Videcette has created a central character with depth; a man scarred by his own inadequacies, drinking to blot out his failings. In Detective Inspector Jake Flanagan we have a tortured soul with the weight of the world on his shoulders, deeply troubled by his investigative responsibilities. He is a man who needs to be needed, a fast rising star whose maverick approach put the perpetrators of the 7/7 atrocities within his grasp, only for them to tear themselves from it.
Throughout this convincing and compelling read, Flanagan teeters on the brink, lurching from bar to nightclub, from one stranger’s bed to another. And yet, he is the man most likely to unearth clues and to string them together in a coherent roadmap.
The reader is dragged along with DI Flanagan, matching him step-for-step, willing him to win out, yet despairing of his self-destructive streak. Whilst his relationship with a Security Service insider is convenient, it is also – in keeping with this expertly assembled novel – entirely plausible.
This is a story that feels real; of course, it is real and you are being offered a glimpse into a hidden world. It is a world we rely on to keep us safe; it is a world we think we know and yet it is riven with secrets. It is interwoven with conspiracies, of powerful hands on the controls whose interests threaten our way of life, whose self-interest runs counter to the national interest.
It is in this dark world that Detective Inspector Flanagan operates ; and we are thankful for that. This is a world that David Videcette unpacks expertly for us, through the eyes of a man torn apart by its complexities.
This is a book that makes you ask questions; thought-provoking, intelligently written and wholly believable