Broken Skin

Book Review: Broken Skin by Stuart MacBride


Broken Skin by Stuart MacBride, 2007, paperback from library, 594p


In the past couple of months I have experienced a profound reading slump, and the Logan McRae series can get all the credit in pulling me out of it. I’ve been immersed in a thrilling and strange world, (all this talk of sleet and cold confuses Aussies, you know?) and I have slowly been making my way through the first couple of novels in the series – Cold Granite and Dying Light. I purchased Cold Granite because it was on sale on ibooks for $0. Such a good/bad promotion, because I then brought Dying Light full price on ibooks – the first time I ever spent money on that platform.

McRae is a wonderful character, and he is surrounded by an interesting and diverse cast who never disappoint in delivering a witty one liner or putting foot to mouth in front of their superiors. I like that there was a lot of background introduced during Cold Granite, it wasn’t as if the character simply ‘started’ with the first book – he had exes, issues with bosses and favourite drinking holes.

My primary issue with these books is that they deal with a darker content then I am used to – rape and murder primarily. I love reading the novels, but then need to focus on something a little fluffier in between. And you know that the book is dark when you consider average murder mysteries and thrillers to be fluff. With MacBride’s books you also get your monies worth, most of these books are in excess of 500p – and packed full of action, not simply McRae figuring things out in his head, often a lot of the ‘detective work’ occurs by other policemen and women, and McRae is there, and they work in a team. I like that. It is very different to the lone wolf hero that seems to be prevalent in many of the books I read.

This review is technically about the third novel – Broken Skin. I really enjoyed this book, found it interesting and enjoyed the case as well as the personal lives of the characters. Also, it discussed a few things I have a little bit of a history with – and it treated those topics with respect. The humour was still there, and I like Logan a little more each book I read.

I find the writing to be very easy to follow – certainly no purple prose here. Some people might be turned off by this, but personally, it helps me to immerse into the world, when there is a simple approach taken to storytelling.

I’ll certainly read the rest of the series, and hopefully catch up at some time this year.