'The Hillingdon Files' has now been independantly reviewed.
January 10, 2022
This month ‘The Hillingdon Files’ will appear in the Pacific Book Review:
Title: The Hillingdon Files: a thrilling crime novel: Featuring kidnap, money laundering, and fraud
Author: Paul A Cooper Publisher: AuthorHouseUK
ISBN: 978- 1665590822
Genre: Fiction / Crime / Thriller
Reviewed by: Jake Bishop
In this, his debut novel, author Paul A Cooper has constructed both an entertaining and informative look into the
workings of law enforcement practices not only in Britain, where the story begins but also in Eastern Europe as the
plot escalates. More than simply a police procedural, however, Cooper’s tale is packed with characters’ emotional
connections, intellectual maneuvers, mounting suspense, and physical action as well.
It all begins when Greg, a police detective, gets an urgent call from his partner, Aleysha. She needs him immediately.
But he can’t find her anywhere. In his attempt to locate her, he becomes the injured, but a surviving victim of an unexplained explosion at a country cottage she’s connected to. Tensions rise as it becomes apparent that not only Aleysha, but also her sister have been forcibly taken and spirited away.
Cooper has chosen to have Greg tell his story in first-person voice. Simultaneously, the author details a potentially related case in third person. He’s also elected to move back and forth in time as each of these plotlines plays out. This technique of melding the two cases increases the reader’s curiosity quotient as both narratives are developed.
The second plot, which is eventually tied to the first, involves financial skullduggery going on within a huge international corporation. Computer files detailing money laundering schemes are seen by people who shouldn’t see them, and those involved will do whatever is necessary—murder included—to silence suspected witnesses. Hillingdon, of the title, is one who becomes the victim of a hit-and-run assassination attempt made to appear accidental.
As both stories progress, they begin to interlock. Soon the main protagonist, Greg, is racing across the continent to rescue Aleysha and her sister. He’s joined and more than ably assisted by their cousin, Kevin, whose financial capabilities make it possible to give chase from one end of Europe to the other.
Cooper does a particularly good job of detailing the various procedural elements involved. Local police are eventually joined by Britain’s MI5 and MI6, plus international forces as far away as Latvia. Both detail and tension mount as Greg and Kevin eventually go rogue and discard formal methods when they see an opportunity to rescue the women before villains dispose of them.
Before novel’s end, the author has introduced and made credible multiple characters. Some on the right side of the law, some on the wrong. But all come across as flesh and blood people, not merely prototypical types from central casting. That includes Greg’s dog, Jet, who may be the strongest of the lot.
All things considered, this is a stand-out effort from author Cooper who even leaves a door open at the end of the story for perhaps more to come. Let’s hope so.
Visit Paul's website: paccbooks.com for more information and links.