“There are wolves among us, Mr Murray. The world is on the edge of the abyss. The unknown. They will pop up like mushrooms after a rain, will try to profit from the chaos.”
Author: Joni Dee Published: 2017 Pages: 211
This fast-paced thriller surrounds the notorious life of spies, dealing with everything from jobs-worth politicians and rogue agents to threats against the country. The novel begins when civilian John Daniel finds himself entangled in a mystery after a man gives him a garbled message before falling to his death. With the help of retired handler, Adam Grey, they begin to pick apart the situation and try to work out what is going on. Along the way they encounter a host of spy characters while dealing with political scandal and terrorism. They definitely have their work cut out for them.
There were a lot of characters in And the Wolf Shall Dwell* but I found that Joni Dee was good at sculpting the differences between them all to make them individual enough, while also moulding them together well as part of the same novel. The way he swapped between different characters’ perspectives helped keep the novel a page turner because there was always something interesting going on.
Dee’s writing was incredible throughout; he crafted events in the novel, from domestic arguments to terrorist attacks, in a spectacular manner. The book did not take me long to read, and for good reason, Dee really knows how to write a page turner. He didn’t drag out any dialogue for longer than was necessary and when a flashback was needed, it was executed in a quick and concise fashion. He managed to perfectly find the balance between action and dialogue.
While I did enjoy the pace of the book, at times, I did find myself a little too suffocated with information – especially jargon which I did not find completely necessary. I loved how authentic Dee managed to make the read and this was partly due to the political and legal words as well as complex bits of information about computer hacking and espionage. However, I found this a little overwhelming at times and I think this took away from the book’s overall very successful narrative.
I found myself in awe of the way he could write about shocking international events one minute and then suddenly flip to a conversation in a bar with equal pace and tension. It was really quite stunning.
I loved the ending of the book. It was satisfying enough not to be angry with the author but also left me with questions and a hunger to read more. If a sequel is published I will most certainly be reading it, and now that I know what to expect from Dee, I feel his writing has the potential to become one of my favourites.
Thank you to Blue Poppy Publishing for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.