Lastnight by Stephen Leather

LastnightA review by C J Dee

★★★★★ five out of five stars

Lastnight, the fifth book in the Jack Nightingale series, sees former cop and current PI Nightingale recruited by perpetual thorn in his side, Superintendent Chalmers, to help investigate a serial killer targeting Goths. When Nightingale discovers the five victims are connected by tattoos linked to the Order of the Nine Angles, the case threatens him and everyone he cares about. Nightingale will do whatever it takes to save the lives of his family and friends, even if it means sacrificing his own.

I was hooked on the Jack Nightingale series from the time I picked up Nightfall and Lastnight has not disappointed. It’s often the case that authors who write a series let the quality of their work decrease as the series goes along, but Stephen Leather hasn’t let this happen. Each Jack Nightingale book is as strong as its predecessor.

Jack Nightingale smokes heavily, drinks often and is flawed in many other ways, but rather than detract from the charm of the character, these flaws only seem to add to his ability to engage the reader. Stephen Leather has managed to weave a complex character who is no saint, but still impresses the sense of good on the reader.

Nightingale’s assistant Jenny returns as his conscience and crime solving sidekick. Often when a female is written as the voice of reason they can come off as bossy, shrill or worst of all, whiney. Jenny is none of these things and matches wits with her boss without missing a beat.

Lastnight feels like it is going to be the last in the series and the title also alludes to this conclusion. If it is in fact the last book in the series, it is a perfect ending to a remarkable series.

Though this isn’t a series that can easily be picked up halfway through, I would be more than happy to recommend supernatural thriller lovers pick up Lastnight with the rest of series and spend a weekend following the demon-summoning, bacon sandwich munching, MGB driving adventures of Jack Nightingale.

Page count: 408
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Rating: 5/5