The Smiling Man by Joseph Knox

Cover Art Courtesy of Goodreads
So I read this book over Christmas break and completely forgot to post a review. I'm usually so good about that so I'm over here kicking myself! But better late than never right? The Smiling Man by Joseph Knox is a detective/crime thriller that follows Detective Aidan Waits. This is actually the second book in the Aidan Waits series. 

Resigned to his lack of any real future and his permanent delegation to the night shift on the force in Manchester, Aidan has lost his zeal for pretty much everything. But when he and his partner come across a body one night, Aidan is suddenly invigorated with a new zeal for his career. You see, the dead man is smiling. But why? With no trace of his identity except for a patch sewn into his pants (his teeth and fingertips had been replaced, offering no help in identification), Aidan throws himself headfirst into trying to figure out who this man is and what happened. Even when colleagues and his supervisor tell him to stay away from the case, he just can't leave it alone.

This book was INCREDIBLY gritty, but I really enjoyed that! While I read a lot of thrillers, I don't read a ton of detective focused crime reads, so this ironically offered a breath of fresh air for me.  This really invoked a lot of film-noir vibes  and I really did envision everything in black and white. I loved the abandoned setting of The Palace hotel, and while I actually hated Aidan's partner Sutty, appreciated what he and all the other characters did for the story. There were some great side stories in this book in addition to the main plot as well.

I actually was not aware at first that this was the second book in the series, but apart from a few conversations where I didn't understand what was being referenced, it was easily to jump into this as a standalone.

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

Thanks so much to Crown Publishing for an advanced copy of this read! The Smiling Man by Joseph Knox is out now!

9 comments

  1. I will definitely look into this series.
    Tasha- Bookworms Corner Blog Spot.

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  2. Thanx for the info - new name for me

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  3. This sounds good, I'll have to add it to my to-reads! Great review.

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  4. Haven't heard of it before, but seems interesting.

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  5. I am just learning of this one, great review!

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  6. i havent read detective crime reads for a while too .. loved this review

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  7. Not heard of the book before, It sounds very intriguing. Loved your review.

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  8. Great review, this is the first time I have herad or seen this book and it really looks and sounds like an amazing and fantastic crime book, I am really glad you fully enjoyed reading this book thank you so much for sharing your awesome post and for putting this book on my radar.

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