Run by Mandasue Heller is a gritty story of Manchester’s criminal underworld. After being cheated on by her ex, Leanne Riley is trying her hardest to get her life back on track, which isn’t easy without a job and living in a bedsit surrounded by a junkie and a mad woman.
On a night out with her best friend she meets Jake, a face from her past who has changed beyond all recognition. Jake is charming, handsome and loaded, a far cry from the gawky teenager he used to be. Weary of men, Leanne isn’t easy to please, but Jake tries his best to break through the wall she’s built around herself.
But good looks and money can hide a multitude of sins. Is that good-looking face just a mask? And what’s more, what will it take to make it slip, and who will die in the process . . . ?
I’m a huge fan of Mandasue Heller and have read every book she’s ever written so of course I jumped at the chance to get my hands on a copy of Run. As with any authors whose books I love I always worry that my “love affair” with them will come to an end when they release a new book, but my concerns were unfounded and I’m happy to report from the spine tingling prologue Mandasue Heller works her magic. There are a few authors who have the extraordinary gift of making the reader feel they are slap bang in the middle of the murky and dangerous criminal underworld and Mandasue Heller is one of them, everything about her writing, the location, dialogue and characters make her books credible and hard hitting.
I was surprised to find Run to be a slow burner, the first half of this book is very much character driven as Leanne falls for the charming, handsome and very well off Jake. The author spends a lot of time developing both Leanne and Jake’s character, from the off they appear to have the sort of relationship some people can only dream of but not everything is how it first appears. The second half was pure Mandasue Heller gritty, disturbing and gripping and I don’t think I’m giving anything away (as it’s all in the book description) by saying the transformation in Jake’s character makes for an exciting read. As the relationship between Leanne and Jake changes the author cranks up the pace leaving no room to draw breath and I found my heart racing as Run reached it’s dramatic conclusion .
I’m sure fans of Mandasue Heller are going to love this book as Run has all the hallmarks that fans of this author have come to love, she delivers a story of love, violence and treachery with gritty realism. Personally I wouldn’t say this wasn’t my favourite of the authors as in my humble opinion the story took a while to build up to the events that made the second part of the book a compulsive read, despite the slow start my “Lover affair” with Mandasue Heller continues and I would buy her next book without hesitation.
4 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️out of 5
Hardcover: 400 pages
Publisher: Macmillan; Main Market Ed. edition (12 Jan. 2017)