#Bookreview of THE AWKWARD SQUAD by Sophie Henaff

THE AWKWARD SQUAD by Sophie Henaff.

Published by MacLehouse Press and translated from French to English by Sam Gordon.

Publication Date: 04-03-2018


Suspended from her job as a promising police officer for firing “one bullet too many”, Anne Capestan is expecting the worst when she is summoned to H.Q. to learn her fate. Instead, she is surprised to be told that she is to head up a new police squad, working on solving old cold cases.

Though relived to still have a job, Capestan is not overjoyed by the prospect of her new role. Even less so when she meets her new team: a crowd of misfits, troublemakers and problem cases, none of whom are fit for purpose and yet none of whom can be fired.

But from this inauspicious start, investigating the cold cases throws up a number a number of strange mysteries for Capestan and her team: was the old lady murdered seven years ago really just the victim of a botched robbery? Who was behind the dead sailor discovered in the Seine with three gunshot wounds? And why does there seem to be a curious link with a ferry that was shipwrecked off the Florida coast many years previously?


In this debut novel by Henaff, all the misfits and unwanted police officers are thrown into one squad; The Awkward Squad.  And the leader is Anne Capestan who has anger management issues of her own.  Their job is to solve all the old Cold Case files.  Out of the boxes of robberies, drug dealers, and other unsolved cases, two murder files come to light.  After years of being unsolved, how will they find the murderers and give the victims justice?

I haven’t read a crime/thriller for a while, and I’m glad I started with this one.  I hate reading crime books where I figure out the killer way before I’m supposed to.  Not with this case.  Henaff does an excellent job leading the reader through the crimes and the clues.  There’s a large cast of characters, but they are introduced slowly throughout the story, so we don’t get confused by who they are.  Another pet peeve of mine is an author drowning the reader in a mass of characters within the first few chapters.

Henaff’s characters are well-developed with their own demons to overcome.  The story is rich in detail and kept me engaged.  My favorite character is Eva Rosiere and her doggy companion. She’s loud, brash, and lonely. She found wealth and fame as a crime writer but also found herself ostracized by her fellow men in blue.

This is the first book in a series, and one I wouldn’t mind following. Especially if each episode is as exciting as this one. I also wonder, how many more of the unwanted officers will show up in the Squad?

Speaking of the Squad, the only part I found unbelievable is the squad itself.  In the US, any officers that had committed the crimes these people did would have been fired or retired.  They wouldn’t be shuffled around from department to department.  Maybe they have a different type of union in France that doesn’t allow that.

I received this ebook as a reviewer for Netgalley, and it does state it is an uncorrected version.  I just hope an editor does some work on it as the writing is passive and there are huge blocks of narration that need to be broken down to make the pace and story flow better.

If you’re looking for a new crime writer, I highly recommend this story, and I give it 4 stars..

Sherlock Holmes, Detective, Magnifying Glass, Loupe

About Sahara Foley

Bio: Until my husband died on Christmas 2012, I never thought about becoming a writer. In fact, the act of writing a story terrified me. Don’t get me wrong, I loved reading, just never had the knack for writing. The thought of writing dialogue scared the bejeebers out of me. See, Bob was the writer. He wrote stories for years but could never get a traditional publisher interested enough to publish even one. Now I understand why, as they were unpolished outlines. Then, after 30 years together, Bob passed away and my life was turned upside down. About a month later, I was sitting around my apartment, trying to adjust to the worst event in my life, when a little voice spoke to me. Why not publish Bob’s stories? To be truthful, ever since the advent of self-publishing, I always wanted too, that’s how much I believed in his stories. But I knew I would have to fight him for every little change I made to his outlines. Sorry, honey, but they had to be done. So, I pulled out the box of stories, dusted them off, and started on a new adventure: The World of Self-Publishing. Boy, did I have a lot to learn. I finally published several short stories early in 2014, then my horror novella, It Lives in the Basement. While I was working on them, I was slowly learning the craft of writing, and getting The Secret of Excalibur ready for publication. Excalibur was my favorite story of them all, and in the back of my mind, I knew I wanted a publisher. One day on Twitter, I ran across a tweet from Creativia Publishing, and that was another game changer for me. I signed up with them in December of 2014, and it was the best decision I’ve made. One thing I’ve discovered on my new adventure, are all the really awesome and talented Indie Authors. If you find the right community of Indie Authors, all they want to do is help each other. I found that I love promoting them and their books, so that’s how I setup my blog. For readers to meet Indie Authors. Anyway, enough about me. Here’s all my contact information: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/booksbysaharafoley Twitter: https://twitter.com/SaharaFoley Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/saharafoley/ Google Plus: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+SaharaFoley/posts Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Sahara-Foley/e/B00J9ST32U/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1
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