Revenge Runs Deep by Pat Young
Your boss is a bully. How far would you go to get revenge?
Thomas Smeaton is a powerful man who makes life a living hell for his employees.
When his bullying drives a woman to suicide, three of her colleagues decide it is time to take action before Smeaton destroys any more good people.
Six months later, a car is found submerged in a reservoir, with a single body inside. Suicide? Or murder?
Two people were there the night that car rolled into the depths of Loch Etrin. And one is still missing.
Wronged by a difficult man, Marty, Sheila and Joe hatch a plan to teach him a lesson.
Revenge Runs Deep pivots around these characters and they're well drawn. Despite their mutual dislike of a certain Mr Smeaton, they have independent reasons for wanting revenge. This is what carries the majority of the book – learning about these characters as individuals and understanding their motivations. It adds a compelling depth often lacking in these types of books.
Mr Smeaton is presented as the arch villain and I initially saw him as uncomplicated and an easy target. However as the book progresses, we witness the full scope of the devastation he wreaks. Mr Smeaton becomes a metaphor for council budget cuts and impossible government edicts. He is the face behind a faceless bureaucracy that ruins lives. In that vein, there is a realistic viciousness to his actions. It wasn't long before I was on board with seeing him learning the error of his ways.
The language is accessible and the story reads with fluidity. From the opening chapters, readers are literally immersed in the drama as we discover a body at the bottom of a lake. The tension was thick. It left me wishing I could read faster, desperate as I was to find out what happened next.
Some revenge stories can get mired in dark places, but this was refreshing in its lightness. It was an original approach with as much heft as others I have read. However, as we creep toward the climax, that lightness disappears. Bitter resentments resurface and we hurtle toward a twist that is both dark and satisfying.
The hallmark of a good book is being confident the writer can lead us to unexpected places. Pat Young is such a writer.
Revenge Runs Deep is available from Amazon here. Pat's book One Perfect Witness will be available on Amazon for 99p from 4th - 9th May. Grab yourself a copy.
If you enjoy any of Pat's books, as I'm sure you will, please leave a review on Amazon. It means more to the author than you can know.