Random – Glasgow – Craig Robertson

random

Why a booktrail?

This side of Glasgow won’t be on any tourist trail or website but it shows the underbelly of a city terrorised by a serial killer who narrates the whole story….

Story in a nutshell

The Cutter

The name leaves little doubt as to the MO of the serial killer stalking the streets of Glasgow. The police have no suspects or motives as the pattern and methods with each murder changes each time. Nothing and no one seems to link each case. Well, there is one thing – each victim has had their little finger of their right hand cut off.

DS Rachel Narey is the one tasked with investigating the murders, but the closer the police get, the more likely it is that his plans will unravel and spill completely out of control.

And that doesn’t bear thinking about

Place and setting

Bath Street Where Jonathan Carr solicitors are Corinthian Club 191 Ingram Street Merchant City Glasgow “The Corinthian annoyed me. It was  a bank until the late 1920s when it became the city’s high court for nearly 70 years” Buchananan Street “He swayed along Buchanan Street as if he owned it” Rhindmuir drive, Bailleston area of city Where Thomas lived and was found murdered Maryhill Road, Bearsden Where William hutchison is found Maryhill Road The supermarket where Fiona Raedale Worked is here
Bath Street
Where Jonathan Carr solicitors are
Corinthian Club
191 Ingram Street
Merchant City
Glasgow
“The Corinthian annoyed me. It was a bank until the late 1920s when it became the city’s high court for nearly 70 years”
Buchananan Street
“He swayed along Buchanan Street as if he owned it”
Rhindmuir drive, Bailleston area of city
Where Thomas lived and was found murdered
Maryhill Road, Bearsden
Where William hutchison is found
The supermarket where Fiona Raedale worked is here

This side of Glasgow won’t be on any tourist map any time soon but then this is what makes it so captivating. Some places you only want to read about in books but its the most chilling view of the city we’ve ever seen.

The story narrated by the killer himself and Glasgow is shaking with fear. Who is stalking their streets and why? The killer gives many interesting view of his Glasgow when stalking his victims. Talking of Jonathon:

I’d followed him. To the Corinthian or from it. From his office to Tiger Tiger. From Glassford Street to the Clyde at Scotstoun.

Glasgow may not know but the reader does from the first few pages. This is the journey of the killer, through his eyes, in his city, on his patch. This man is hunted and with good reason but from both sides – the police and the underworld. And its not the later who he can expect to get the best treatment from.

Glasgow seems a much smaller city at night

The Glasgow underworld are depicted in full graphic detail. Violent and brutal but then the wry comedy emerges –

Nobody in Glasgow was scared of a bit of organised criminal bloodshed

Even the dialect gets in on the act – mirroring the hard faced, graphic, remote, grey and desolate nature of the city itself –

Every one deid is one less bampot on the streets

However, as is very true in Scotland, the moments of comedy can always be overheard in the back of a taxi.

Booktrail review – Clare

With the main character as a serial killer who goes around Glasgow convinced that what he is doing is right and that it needs to be done, this is a crime novel with a difference. His life is a lonely one, full of regrets and he has this urgent matter to take care of, and that is what he is doing now. More importantly he wants others to know about what he is doing and why  – the why being the most important of them all as he wants police and others to know that he’s not just doing this for kicks – no this means something.

How did he get like this and why? What will happen now? Where was the justice system when it was needed? Interesting arguments which I enjoyed getting to grips with.

And Glasgow just has to be the city of choice – its image, style, gallus nature mirrors that of the serial killer. Gallus is a great Scottish word meaning reckless, bold, fearless, cocky….and this is the setting of the novel and its crimes.

The underbelly of the city is vividly and graphically evoked. For me the challenge was to see who I was going to side with – the serial killer or the victims and there’s a sentence I never thought I’d say.

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