“An intriguing thriller based in a shady hidden world of cyber-hackers. Bryn writes alternative histories and is perplexed when he discovers his bank account emptied and computer wiped, a research trip takes him down a very unexpected path. Bryn appears at times to be somewhat naive, however that is part of his charm and is a nice foil against the crusading hackers and business sharks. This is a fairly slow burner, with each scenario adding a piece to the jigsaw. Robin Duval ensures the technology side of things is explained well and although there are times when it all seems slightly fantastical, it does feel as though this could be a reality. ‘Not Single Spies’ is an entertaining and enjoyable slice of fiction.”
Liz Robinson of Love Reading.
“I enjoyed Not Single Spies very much. I much admired the ingenuity of the plot and the way Duval kept the kettle boiling.”
Michael Green, author of The Art of Coarse Rugby and The Art of Coarse Acting.
“Ordinary people stumbling across murder victims are the basis of several very good crime fiction stories, and Duval manages to create a believable atmosphere that will hook your interest – what if something like this were to happen to you? Excellent.”
“The pace is unrelenting but it holds attention till the end. Meticulous research (places, cars, firearms, nerdy IT stuff) shows through… an accomplished thriller, intelligently delivered.”
“This is a fast moving, gripping story in which modern communications technology plays a significant role and reminds us that any of us who carry a smart phone or similar device can be located at any time anywhere in the world and the messages we send traced historically. This drama of concerned activists plotting to destroy big business tycoons who make money from industries that adversely affect the ecology of the planet is thoroughly researched, technologically bang up to the minute and with an underlying love story that humanises it. It is a novel of today.”
Reviews from Books Monthly and Amazon UK.
“This is a galloping good read that held my attention to the end. Some familiar tropes – stolen isotopes, Mossad kidnappings, torture by sinister Texans – but cleverly interwoven with some nice domestic touches for anyone familiar with the author’s home territory of Ealing, west London, and his passions (also evident in his previous novel Bear in the Woods, featuring the same slightly flakey protagonist) for opera, walking in the great outdoors, film, and American history. Refreshingly literate, as one would expect from a former Director of the BBFC, but also pacey and well-constructed, it maintains tension and delivers one or two unflagged surprises. Thoroughly enjoyable!”
“Well-defined characters, a pacy narrative, one dramatic episode coming fast upon another, plenty of derring-do and moving on, and surprises in the resolution.”
“Having been delighted to discover a fresh new novelist when I stumbled upon Bear In The Woods I wondered if Robin Duval could maintain momentum with his second … I needn’t have worried. His hero, Bryn, comes back with the now-familiar mixture of inquiry and bewilderment in a novel of skilful construction that is well crafted but above all up-to-the-minute. If you haven’t … Give this one a read – you will enjoy.”
Reviews from Amazon UK
Crime fiction blog Mean Streets has recently reviewed Robin’s second book, Below the Thunder.
“…the story is fresh and there are several intriguing twists and turns that make it entertaining and, ultimately, a page-turner.”
Read the full review.
Thank you to Keith Walters for his review of Below the Thunder on his excellent blog, Books and Writers.
We particularly liked Keith’s summing up, “Like an unsuspecting Jason Bourne fan getting caught up in his own fantasy adventure, this was a fun and entertaining ride across the globe with characters I enjoyed and would want to read more of in the future.”
“Hugely enjoyable, the plot led me a merry dance. Lots to think about in the characters and what they had to say about life. I also learnt a lot about American history in the process of reading the book and decided that I am not going to take any short cuts when driving through the States. Are there really recorder groups and, if so, are they really like this?”
“This is a cleverly crafted thriller which I found difficult to put down. Set mainly in the USA during a presidential election campaign, the writer’s knowledge and understanding both of that country’s geography and history – particularly of the Civil War battlefields – is impressive and help to keep the reader forever wondering what on earth is coming next. The essence of a good page-turner, which this most certainly is. The writer understands human psychology and the fears and pressures brought on by events seemingly outside one’s control. There is an eerie fascination in trying to divine why exactly all this is happening to our hero, which is not resolved until the final pages. A brilliant debut novel.”
“A new author to salute… A likeable English academic’s tale of a lecture visit to Chicago, inexplicably threatened by persons unknown, turning into a frightful nightmare and much derring-do. The theme picks up as religious, sexual, political and personal complexities intrude, all nicely marshaled and neatly resolved. Along the way, enjoy gently sardonic views on the American way of life, and informed writing on food, music and notably the Civil War battlefields. A remarkable debut.”
Reviews from Amazon UK