Book Reviews for April 2012

The Retribution
by Val McDermid
Published by Penguin
£7.99 less £1.00
Tony Hill has had a good run. He and detective Carol Jordan have put away scores of dangerous criminals at a rate that colleagues envy. But there is one serial killer who has shaped and defined their careers, and whose evil surpasses all others: Jacko Vance, ex-celebrity and sociopath whose brilliance and utter lack of remorse have never left Tony’s mind in the ten years since his imprisonment. Now Jacko has escaped from prison, even more twisted and cunning than before, he is focused on wreaking revenge on Tony and Carol for his years spent in prison.Tony and Carol don’t know when Jacko will strike, or where. All they know is that Jacko will cause them to feel fear like they’ve never known.

Against All Enemies
by Tom Clancy
Published by Penguin
£7.00 less £1.00
A terrorist bombing in Pakistan wipes out Max Moore’s entire CIA team. As the only survivor, the former Navy SEAL plunges deeper into the treacherous tribal lands to find the terrorist cell, but what he discovers there leads him to a much darker conspiracy in an unexpected part of the globe, the US/Mexico border. Here a drug war rages between the Juarez and Sinaloa cartels. The landscape is strewn with bodies, innocents and drug dealers alike, but is there an even deadlier enemy lurking in the background? Into this deadly brew, Moore leads a group of specially selected agents whose daring actions reveal shocking answers and uncover an unholy plan a strike against the very heart of America.

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
By Deborah Moggach
Published by Vintage
£7.00 less £1.00
When Ravi Kapoor, an overworked London doctor, reaches the breaking point with his difficult father-in-law, he asks his wife: “Can’t we just send him away somewhere? Somewhere far, far away.” His prayer is seemingly answered when Ravi’s entrepreneurial cousin sets up a retirement home in India, hoping to re-create in Bangalore an elegant lost corner of England. Several retirees are enticed by the promise of indulgent living at a bargain price, but upon arriving, they are dismayed to find that restoration of the once sophisticated hotel has stalled, and that such amenities as water and electricity are infrequent. But what their new life lacks in luxury, they come to find, it’s plentiful in adventure, stunning beauty, and unexpected love.

The Descendants
By Kaui Hart Hemmings
Published by Vintage
7.00 less £1.00
Matt King, a Honolulu attorney, finds himself in deep water after his fun-loving wife, Joanie, falls into a coma following a boating accident. Left in sole charge of his two rebellious teenage daughters, he’s forced to wake up to all kinds of new realities, including the fact that his wife was having an affair. Convinced of the need to track down Joanie’s lover, he takes his girls on an idiosyncratic and deliciously tropical road trip.  An engaging comic debut about a middle-aged man’s attempts to navigate a far from scenic route home. As Matt acknowledges: “My Polynesian ancestors would be disappointed in me, in all of us.”