Blog Tour stop: Review of London In Black by Jack Lutz

(I received a copy of this book in return for an honest review. And boy am I glad I did, I loved it.)



LONDON 2027.

Terrorists deploy London Black, a highly sophisticated nerve gas, at Waterloo Station. For ten percent of the population – the ‘Vulnerables’ – exposure means near-certain death. Only a lucky few survive.

LONDON 2029.

Copy-cat strikes plague the city, its Vulnerable inhabitants kept safe by regular Boost injections. As the anniversary of the first attacks draws near, DI Lucy Stone, a guilt-ridden Vulnerable herself, is called to investigate the gruesome murder of a scientist. Her investigation soon unearths the possibility that he was working on an antidote – one that Lucy desperately needs, as her Boosts become less and less effective.

But is the antidote real? And can Lucy solve the case before her Boosts stop working?


This is my stop on the blog tour for this near-future, dystopian detective slightly sci-fi thriller. I keep picturing it as a film, with Noomi Rapace in the lead role. She’d be perfect as the battered and bruised (literally and emotionally) Met detective, haunted by a past horrific event and determined to make amends before the guilt overwhelms her.

Her flat is deliberately stripped bare of comforts, even doors and furniture; she dreads sleep and mainlines coffee-and-Coke chasers to stay awake. And her Boosts are working for less and less time each day.

I love Andrew Hunter-Murray’s books and this is in a similar vein; London-as-could-very-well-soon-be, and it’s told in flashbacks and in the present time. On paper it sounds a little formulaic but it’s not, it’s brilliant. It’s twisty and dark, with genuine horror moments. It’s also funny and so descriptive, the London world-building is excellent. I don’t know the city beyond the tourist spots but I imagine if you did you would enjoy following the action around the dirty, clogged future streets.

It holds back from spoon-feeding the reader, you are kept in the dark as to what The Thing That Happened was, and the fate of various characters seen in the flashbacks.

In short, if dystopian crime is your thing, especially when led by a strong female character who really doesn’t take any crap, do not miss this one.

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