Monday 22 November 2021

The Final Shot: A 1960s London gangland thriller (Charles Holborne Legal Thrillers Book 7) - Simon Michael

Charles Holborne returns with another high-stakes case! Perfect for fans of John Grisham, Robert Bailey, Michael Connelly and Robert Dugoni.

They think it’s all over…

London, 1966

As England eagerly anticipates the World Cup Final, barrister Charles Holborne is briefed in another high-profile case.

Once a sadistic gangster, Reverend Stanley Sharpe found God while incarcerated and has run his own parish for a number of years since being released. But when he is convicted of murdering Frank Marshall, right-hand man to the Kray twins, he is sent back to prison for life.

Convinced that he is innocent, Reverend Sharpe’s wife begs Charles to apply to the Court of Appeal to reopen the case.

With his own question marks over whether Frank Marshall is really dead, Charles agrees to take the brief on.

But with the media now casting doubt over Sharpe’s redemption, Charles knows he is bound for failure unless he can find further evidence.

And to do so he must once again cross the most dangerous men in London…

THE FINAL SHOT is the seventh crime novel in an exciting historical series, the Charles Holborne Legal Thrillers — gritty, hard-boiled mysteries set in 1960s London.

What did I think?

The Final Shot is book 7 in the Charles Holborne legal thrillers series and it's written in such a way that you could definitely read it as a standalone, but I really do urge you to read the books in order as it's one of my favourite series and every single instalment is brilliant.

Set during the summer of 1966, when England is in the grip of World Cup fever and The Krays rule the shady London underworld, Charles Holborne is asked to advise on an appeal.  Stanley Sharpe gave up his life of crime to dedicate his life to the church and he is in prison for a crime he claims he did not commit.  The police have a confession from him, so why did he confess if he didn't do it?  

Charles Holborne never sees things in black and white, not when he knows the many shades of grey that lie within.  With The Krays having their fingers in many pies, nothing is ever as clear as it seems and if anyone will find out the truth, Charles will.  As well as the legal thriller side to the plot, Charles' personal life also plays a big part in the story.  Charles is no stranger to discrimination so he agrees to be shadowed by a young woman doing her pupillage.  Maria Hudson has set tongues wagging in chambers; she's female, American and black - what a shock to the system this must be in 1960's London!

Reconnected with his girlfriend Sally, Charles is in a much happier place now so it was lovely to see how his life has changed (for the better).  That's why it's worth reading the books in order as the reader becomes acquainted with Charles over the course of the series and you really do care about what happens to him.

Gripping, atmospheric and incredibly nostalgic, The Final Shot is a winner!  With the spirit of 1966 woven into the prose, I was gripped by World Cup Fever as well as the razor-sharp plot.  It's another unputdownable legal thriller from storyteller extraordinaire, Simon Michael.

I received an ARC from the author to read and review; all opinions are my own.

My rating:

Publishing on 19/01/22, pre-order now from Amazon UK

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