The Sacred Art of Stealing by Christopher Brookmyre

This is another book which I read during the Christmas holidays and I’ve been swithering about reviewing it ever since.

It’s definitely not one for the prudish as it is a wee bit over the top in a couple of places. Having said that, I did enjoy reading it. It starts off in Mexico but the action soon switches to the lovely city of Glasgow, which is always nice especially if you are homesick for the streets. I enjoyed being in Buchanan Street and Gordon Street and the Kelvingrove Gallery anyway.

Angelique de Xavia has grown up in Glasgow and gone to a Roman Catholic school where she had rather a hard time of it due to the fact that her skin colour didn’t fit in as her parents had been amongst the Ugandan Asians deported by Idi Amin in the 1970s. She becomes a Rangers supporter mainly because all of the hateful pupils are Celtic supporters but being a Rangers fan is the big secret in her life. The rivalry between the two teams is really well observed and funny.

When she joins the police she becomes an expert in judo and has a reputation for being a bit of a maverick so when there is a robbery at a bank and hostages are taken, Angelique abseils into the building. It’s a robbery with a difference and Angelique ends up finding one of the robbers more than a bit interesting, which is where it became a bit unlikely.

There are loads of twists and turns in the plot and I think that anyone who is into suspense/mystery novels would probably enjoy it. Even if they don’t have the added dimension of imagining themselves at the Mitchell Library or in Partick.

One thing did annoy me though and that was the spelling of Glesca Polis. Apparently Brookmyre was born in Glasgow, as I was, but I have never heard any Glaswegian pronounce Glasgow in that way. It is always Glesga. Only teuchters (highlanders) pronounce it with a ‘c’.

I reviewed this book as part of the Thriller and Suspense Challenge.

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