Book Review: The Agency, by Ian Austin

Available now in bookshops nationwide.

cv_the_agencyDan Calder moves to New Zealand from the UK to put ghosts to bed. His father worked in the Police, rising through the ranks to become a senior officer. His father’s dirty secret was that he abused Dan’s mother. His mother died when he was a teenager, with Dan training to become a Police Officer himself, giving him an excuse to finally leave home. Dan has a successful career in the Police force in the UK but butts heads with those in authority, so leaves to live in New Zealand.

Dan lives next door to Paul and Shelley who try and make him welcome and include him in their social life, wanting to set him up with somebody they know. Dan has been burned a number of times in relationships, but he likes Tara, and they soon form a close relationship. Tara has a brother Neil who suffers from depression. Dan and Tara’s lives are soon linked forever through events far-reaching and beyond their control.

‘The Agency’ is formed by a woman with various identities. No job is too small or too difficult. She preys on the vulnerable – people suffering from terminal or severe mental illness. Dan, trolling the internet stumbles across ‘The Agency’. With his considerable computer skills he starts to wonder who is behind it. The name V. Stenning pops us again and again. He tracks the person behind the mysterious Agency down and manages to link them to an unsolved case in the UK…

This is a fantastic book and one of the best crime novels I’ve read for some time. Ian Austin worked as a Police Officer in the UK, and during a New Zealand Police recruitment drive he took the opportunity and transferred to the New Zealand Police. The thoroughness and detail that has gone into writing this book is outstanding. I look forward to reading more of Ian Austin’s books in the future.

Reviewed by Christine Frayling

The Agency
by Ian Austin
Published by Ian Austin
ISBN 9780473355371

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