Saturday, 1 February 2020
Blind Eye - Stuart MacBride
A Logan McRea story from 2009, this is MacBride on top of his form - dark, witty, and set in Aberdeen. Polish people are turning up with their eyes removed and the sockets burnt. Some of them survive. Inevitably, McRae, back from sick leave (having eaten human flesh in the previous novel) gets seconded to DCI Finnie's team. Meanwhile his immediate boss, DCI Roberta Steel, is pressuring him for a donation to her wife Susan's dream of a baby. On the positive side, his luck is in with the tattooed girl from IB and he uncovers a lead which gets him a free trip to Poland.
In Poland he meets a hot Polish policeman and a blinded bomb maker. This leads to McRae and the girl getting blown up - and we're still only about two-thirds of the way through the book.
I have always enjoyed MacBride. For me, he has overtaken Ian Rankin at the top of the Scottish crime fiction tree. Rankin's problem is that his hero has become aged and inactive. That hasn't yet happened with McBride, but Blind Eye reminds me how great he was in his pomp and that things have faded slightly over more recent novels. Still, as with Rankin, I won't be able to resist new instalments.