REVIEW: Dead on Demand

I picked up this title during a “free copy” promo, and overall I did enjoy this title.

Reading a little of the background of the book shows that it was written (and published) within 90 days, which is no easy task. Unfortunately, this fast pace does make itself evident in the book. There are numerous typographical errors, for example “should” obviously should have been “shoulder” and I am still trying to work out where “Convent Garden” is in London. The author(s) also has an extreme aversion for capitalised proper nouns throughout the book. A lot of the time, this is just a mild annoyance, but on occasions it can cause confusion to the reader (especially perhaps non UK readers who might not know things like The Evening Standard).

If indeed, the novel was finished well within the 90 day timeframe, perhaps it would have been well worth taking another week to do some additional polishing. One character is referred to living in Tower Hamlets (north of the Thames) but a few pages later this changes to Brixton (south of the Thames) and even has a new name.

The authors go to great lengths to allow the reader to draw their own pictures of what characters look like, which is commendable, and indirectly referenced in the text itself, but sometimes this is quite hard on the reader as pertinent character detail is added several chapters later when it would have been gratefully received upon the character’s first introduction. On one occasion, I had to wait several chapters to be told who one character was in relation to the protagonist.

There is plenty to like about this book, if you can forgive it’s unpolished state. It moves along at a decent pace, and is well thought out from start to finish, if a little heavy on the tv clichés at times. The characters are relateable and engaging and the plot is strong enough to keep me interested through to the end.

If the two authors wrote a second novel of equal calibre and improved on the technical side of the writing, then I would definitely want to read it.

Had this been properly copy edited it would be worthy of 4 stars.

*EXTRA* I understand that some of the errors (such as weird name switching) have been fixed on a re-release, but there are still plenty left.

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