No Mercy (Review) // A large crime family, endless betrayals, the road to nowhere

Family always come first. Until now.

No more waiting, the new novel from the No. 1 bestselling phenomenon Martina Cole is here, and it’s pure Martina gold. No Mercy is a heart-stopping rollercoaster ride of a read that proves there really is only one Martina Cole.

Diana Davis has been head of the family business since the death of her husband, an infamous bank robber. She’s a woman in a man’s world, but no one messes with her.

Her only son, Angus, is a natural born villain, but he needs to earn Diana’s trust before she’ll allow him into the business.

Once he’s proved he has the brains to run their clubs in Marbella, he is given what he’s always wanted. It’s the beginning of a reign of terror that knows no bounds.

But Angus has a blind spot: his wife, Lorna, and their three kids, Angus Junior, Sean and Eilish. And as the next generation enters the business, Angus has a painful truth to learn. Even when it comes to family, he must show no mercy…

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Diana Davis is the head of the Davis crime family. As she ages, she must teach her only child, Angus Davis, the ways of her world so that he will be able to inherit it. Though willing, Angus has a lot to learn, as he soon discovers. Through harsh lessons, difficult situations, and lose-lose situations, Angus begins to take a lead role in the family business. But when he has three children of his own, will he be able to maintain his ruthlessness—even in regard to them?

No Mercy was an enjoyable read for sure, but I felt unsure of where the book was headed until the last fifty pages. Angus was an interesting main character, but not particularly likeable? I connected a lot more with Eilish and Sean, but again they weren’t truly a part of the story until much later on. I enjoyed reading about the daily occurrings in the Davis family, if you can call them that. Martina Cole is very good at writing real world style.

I liked how the other crime families were introduced, often through conflict; resolution of a conflict, or creating a conflict. There was a well written intricacy of these interactions which was sustained throughout the book. There were some really great character dynamics, and I particularly enjoyed the contrast of Angus and Lorna, though Lorna as a character perplexed me. Other than being far from a stereotype, I didn’t see much in her.

The third person omniscient perspective gave the reader a look into a lot of different characters’ heads, but the extremely short chapter length and switching between situations was a bit off putting. likewise the time jumps made sense, but also confused me; I felt like the story hadn’t really moved forward, yet suddenly here we were, three years later. I’m just a bit uncomfortable about how women were portrayed in the novel, because yes it’s crime, but also all the infidelity and talk about temptation…

While there were things that I really liked about this book, on the whole I just wasn’t sold and don’t think it was the right book for me. A great deal of the book seemed to be introductionary in purpose and set the scene for the ending rather than revolving around a plot. There was a build up with characters as their personalities were expanded on and became increasingly problematic in a way, however this had little to do with the ending. But if you’re a fan of crime thrillers then maybe check it out.

~I received a copy from Hachette NZ and willingly reviewed it~

What are your thoughts on crime novels? Do you like reality based fiction?

 Xoxo, Cas

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