Fade to Grey by John Lincoln #BookReview #BlogTour

Gethin Grey is the man you call when there’s nowhere else to turn.

His Last Resort Legals team investigates miscarriages of justice. But Gethin is running out of options himself: his gambling is out of control, his marriage is falling apart and there’s no money left to pay the wages…

Izma M was sent down years ago for the brutal murder of a young woman. In jail he’s written a bestseller and become a cult hero, and now the charismatic fading-film-star Amelia Laverne wants to bankroll Gethin to prove Izma’s innocence.For Gethin – low on luck and cash – the job is heaven sent. But is Izma M really as blameless as his fans believe?

This seemingly cold case is about to turn very hot indeed…

It's my pleasure to be hosting the blog tour for Fade to Grey by John Lincoln today. Many thanks to the author, No Exit Press and Anne Cater from Random Things Tours for inviting me and for my advance copy of the novel.

Last Resort Legals are aptly named; for convicted prisoners claiming to have been wrongly convicted, they may indeed be their last resort. Of the scores of applications they receive, only a few have a good enough case and the funds to pay for the legal investigators to work for them. Gethin Grey is in charge and is in a good mood at the start of the book because his team have just been engaged by actor, Amelia Laverne to secure the release of Izma M who is currently locked up for the murder of Hannah Gold in 2005. At the time he was known as Tyrell Hanson, a black drug dealer and gangster from Bristol. The evidence against him was mostly circumstantial but as a black boy with an attitude and a gun, the case went to court and he was found guilty. In the intervening years in prison, he has converted to Islam, changed his name to Ismail Mohammed - Izma M - and written a bestselling book about his troubled upbringing and how since embracing Islam, he has become a changed man who believes in peace and love. Previously nobody would much have cared whether he was innocent or not, but now he's become a cause célèbre and it's up to Last Resort Legals to fight for justice.
It's fair to say that Gethin has had his own share of troubles over the years. He is addicted to gambling which has understandably caused issues within his marriage but despite his very obvious failings, I found him a more sympathetic character than his wife, Catriona. I think this is probably inevitable given that we are privy to his innermost feelings when his actions spiral out of control and so understand him more than Cat. His relationship with his father, known for the most part in the book as the Judge is complicated but absolutely fascinating and definitely something I'm looking forward to being explored further in subsequent books in the series. I particularly enjoyed the somewhat unlikely friendship which appears to be developing between his office manager, Bex and his father which is already beginning to reveal a different side to the Judge.
Beyond Gethin, the characters in Fade to Grey are diverse and authentic. I thought Bex was wonderful but my favourite character is probably Lee, his lead investigator. There are some lovely moments in the novel where people are surprised to learn that a black woman is a legal investigator but there can be no doubt that she is a highly skilled and resourceful - if unorthodox - asset to the team. Expectations differing from reality is a constant theme throughout Fade to Grey; the simple act of Bex changing her appearance to sing as tribute acts for various artists; Amelia Laverne who is still a much-loved star despite her fading career revealing her own inner torment behind her public facade; and most importantly, the piercing examination of societal prejudices and how looking a certain way leads to  assumptions and perhaps ultimately, convictions.
Fade to Grey is a fresh, thought-provoking and engaging crime thriller with plenty of red herrings meaning I was constantly reassessing my opinions as to what really happened to Hannah. The complex plot feels fast moving throughout, thanks in part to the case requiring Gethin and his team to constantly travel between Cardiff and Bristol. The sense of place is superb and both cities will be instantly recognisable to anybody who knows them. Alongside the main story there are also scenes featuring a young man, Danny on holiday with his family in Cyprus in 2001 and it's fascinating to gradually learn how this is connected to Gethin's investigation.
I really enjoyed Fade to Grey, it's an intriguing introduction to an exciting new series and I'm looking forward to reading more.

Fade to Grey by John Lincoln is published by No Exit Press, purchasing links can be found on their website.

Don't miss the rest of the blog tour, details are below.

About the Author

John Lincoln is the transparent pseudonym of John Williams, the novelist, biographer and crime fiction reviewer for the Mail on Sunday. In his twenties John Williams wrote a book called Into The Badlands, about American crime fiction (‘John Williams’ Into the Badlands opened up the world of American crime fiction for me and a generation’ – David Peace).

His true crime account of a notorious miscarriage of justice, Bloody Valentine, is a cult classic, described by Benjamin Zephaniah as his favourite book. Since then he’s written eight more books including the Cardiff Trilogy of novels and biographies of Michael X, Eartha Kitt and Dame Shirley Bassey.
Twitter  Website


  1. Thanks so much for the Blog Tour support Karen x

  2. How I get my joy back into my life I want to thank Dr Akhere who help me get my ex lover back under 24hours max Dr Akhere is one of the best spell caster in the world and he is trustful and a man of humility and harmony he can also help you with whichever problem you are facing Email : Akheretemple@yahoo.com  or add him on Whats-app: +1(315)3161521...


Post a Comment