blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: Once a Killer – Murray Bailey

He changed his identity.
He moved to Hong Kong.
He changed his life.
But can he change who he really is?

Charles Balcombe, sophisticated, risk-taking lothario was a special investigator. He thinks that taking a PI job to find a missing boy will distract him from his killer instinct. But once a killer…

My thoughts: this was very enjoyable, gripping and intelligent. Balcombe – also known as Blackjack – is a dangerous man, but there’s some goodness in him as he frees imprisoned young women and deals with their captors during his investigation into the missing son of a banker.

In the deeply segregated world of post war Hong Kong, a white man wandering around Chinatown stands out, but somehow Balcombe avoids too much attention. Handy when a detective with the police – Munro, is suspicious of him.

I liked Albert, Balcombe’s rickshaw boy and assistant, I hope in future books there’s more of their partnership. I also liked detective Munro – promoted not just because he’s a good cop but also because they thought he was white! His relationships with Balcombe could be very interesting.

Balcombe was a bit of a mystery, I think there’s a lot more to him than so far revealed. Obviously he’s a killer on the run, having fled Malaya (now Malaysia) and changed his name. His signature moves with knives might bring the authorities down on his head if anyone connects the dots. I can’t wait to see what happens next and whether he ever crosses paths with the author’s more straightforwardly heroic Carter again…

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

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