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Fair Means Or Foul (Inspector Stark, Book 4) by Keith Wright


The man sitting at the wheel of the car was 100 yards from his moment of destiny. He was oblivious to it, of course. Murderers don’t necessarily realise they are killers until a few seconds before it happens. Murderers are sometimes just like you and me. He would never have dreamed that such a thing might happen. Ridiculous. If anyone had told him that today was the day he would turn into a killer, he would have looked at them quizzically; questioning their sanity; instead of questioning his own.

The murder investigation into the death of a young girl at Nottingham’s Goose Fair throws up several suspects, close to home and further away. The stream of inquiries spirals into a climax, and suddenly another young life hangs in the balance.

Detective Inspector Stark and his team prepare to do anything to stop further bloodshed. They are willing to use any means necessary, whether it be fair means or foul.

In his fourth crime thriller, critically acclaimed author, Keith Wright, once again regales the stark reality of murder, derived from his hands-on experience as a CID detective sergeant working in an inner-city area. 


I’ve read my share of police procedural crime thrillers and I have to say I’m fascinated with Mr. Wright’s writing style and details not only in the investigation but the characters as well.  Fair Means Or Foul, set in 1987 in Nottingham, England, is engrossing and terrifying. This is my first Keith Wright novel and I definitely plan to continue reading the series.

Detective Investigator David Stark is investigating the deplorable murder of a young girl located near the Nottingham Goose Fair which is a huge event held the first weekend of October. With thousands of visitors, the crime is clever and bold, and Stark and his team have the combined experience and skill to find the killer. What kind of animal has the method, motive, and opportunity to kill an innocent young girl? The police have a list of suspects which they meticulously narrow down to a chosen few.  But can they find the killer before he strikes again?

The characters are well-developed and they are very close to the real deal working together seamlessly to solve a crime and getting the bad guy.  Delving into the minds of the characters gives the reader insight, chaos, and clarity on their daily musings and how truly screwed up some of them are. DI Stark is a good man and a very smart and well-respected boss who trusts his team to get the job done. Apparently, there are some things about his past that aren’t addressed fully in this book, but the author gives the reader enough details to get some idea of what happened. As for the supporting characters, the camaraderie and occasional joking among colleagues are needed to break the tension of a serious and horrific murder. My favorite character is DC Steve Aston, the diligent, socially inept, and likable newbie who is experiencing much of what the reader is for the first time such as grieving parents, an autopsy, and a humorous problematic pet while questioning a witness.

This engaging book is told in an era I remember well. When social media, cell phones, and the internet were non-existent. Where you had to find a payphone or find a landline to call home.  The author explains in detail how most of the investigative work is done in person, by knowing the setting, by reading people, and not using technology such as CCTV, but using video cameras from spectators.

Overall, this is one of the best police procedural crime thrillers I’ve read in a long time. It is gripping with bits of humor, and it kept me guessing until the end. Time for me to pick up the previous books in the series.

Thank you to Mr. Wright for giving me the opportunity to read this book with no expectation of a positive review.


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Keith WrightKeith Wright is the Author of the crime novels in the ‘Inspector Stark series’ available on Amazon, Kindle and Kindle Unlimited|Audiobook on Audible and iTunes.

Visit him on his website, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.




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