Carlisle United are playing Millwall and the Major Crimes Team are assigned to crowd control as punishment for their renegade ways. Typically, DI Harry Evans has other ideas and tries to thwart the local firm’s plans to teach Millwall’s notorious Bushwhackers an unforgettable lesson.
Meanwhile an undercover cop is travelling north with some of the Millwall contingent. His mission is to identify the ringleaders and gather evidence against them.
Three illegal immigrants have been transported to Carlisle and are about to meet their new employers.
Nothing is as it seems for Evans and his Major Crimes Team as they battle to avoid a bloodbath while also uncovering a far more heinous crime.
'Matching the Evidence' picks up at exactly the same point where 'Snatched from Home' ends. I've read it twice, before and then after reading 'Snatched' and the second time round, with more background knowledge of the characters, the experience was totally different and much more enjoyable. So, even though this book can be read as a standalone, I would still recommend readers to read 'Snatched' first.
As a 'punishment' for taking the law into his own hands and not following procedure (as always) in Snatched, maverick DI Harry Evans and (as a result) the other Major Crimes Team detectives are put to shame by the top brass and ordered to watch over football hooligans and somehow prevent violent clashes between the rival Carlisle and Milwall supporters.
Evans soon takes the situation in hand and issues orders to identify and round up the most dangerous local thugs. In the meantime undercover cops have been infiltrated among the Milwall supporters heading north for battle.
"Are your hunches normally right?" "More often than not."
But Evans's nose tells him that something else might be brewing behind the scenes. Someone might be taking advantage of the chaotic situation in town to carry out some other heinous deed. Is he right? And what could it be?
In this novella we have the same great mix of interesting characters we had in the author's debut novel. Evans is as reckless and aggressive as ever, his retirement looming in the immediate future. His replacement, DI John Campbell, is learning fast the tricks of the trade, meeting key people and already blending quite well with the rest of the team. I don't know what the author has in store for us in his future books, but I really hope he keeps both Evans and Campbell together in the same team. Well we'll see, but together with the other detectives, they form such a formidable team.
Unfortunately sometimes I find that novellas have either been hurriedly written or end abruptly, but this wasn't the case with MtE. It's amazing how the author has managed to squeeze a full story involving not one, but two completely different cases in just a few pages.
This is another enjoyable read by Graham Smith, a fast-paced, engaging story that kept my interest throughout with ongoing action. It is brilliantly written and I practically devoured it in under an hour.
With huge thanks to Graham Smith, Caffeine Nights Publishing and my awesome blogger friend Noelle Holten for providing me with an ARC of this book.
Graham Smith is married with a young son. A time served joiner he has built bridges, houses, dug drains and slated roofs to make ends meet. For the last eleven years he has been manager of a busy hotel and wedding venue near Gretna Green, Scotland.
An avid fan of crime fiction since being given one of Enid Blyton’s Famous Five books at the age of eight, he has also been a regular reviewer for the well respected review site Crimesquad.com for over two years.
As well as reviewing for Crimesquad.com Graham has also interviewed such stellar names as David Baldacci, Jeffrey Deaver, Dennis Lehane, Lee Child, Matt Hilton, current CWA Chair Peter James, Mark Billingham and many others.
When not working, his time is spent reading, writing and playing games with his son. He enjoys socialising and spending time with friends and family.