I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

The Night Watch (DS Max Craigie Scottish Crime Thrillers, Book 3) by Neil Lancaster
Published by HQ on September 8, 2022
ISBN: 9780008470418
Genres: Fiction, Mystery & Detective, Police Procedural, Crime, Thrillers, Domestic, Women, Action & Adventure, General, Suspense, Scottish Crime, Scottish Highlands
Pages: 461
Format: ARC, eBook
Source: NetGalley, Publisher
Buy on Amazon
five stars - The Night Watch (DS Max Craigie #3) by Neil Lancaster

‘Well, this is a belter of a book! A hugely entertaining and gripping read!’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Don’t miss the next gripping thriller in the DS Max Craigie series!
He’ll watch you.A lawyer is found dead at sunrise on a lonely clifftop at Dunnet Head on the northernmost tip of Scotland. It was supposed to be his honeymoon, but now his wife will never see him again.
He’ll hunt you.The case is linked to several mysterious deaths, including the murder of the lawyer’s last client – Scotland’s most notorious criminal... who had just walked free. DS Max Craigie knows this can only mean one thing: they have a vigilante serial killer on their hands.
He’ll leave you to die.But this time the killer isn’t on the run; he’s on the investigation team. And the rules are different when the murderer is this close to home.
He knows their weaknesses, knows how to stay hidden, and he thinks he’s above the law...
Max, Janie and Ross return in the third gripping novel in this explosive Scottish crime series. Pre-order now!
Readers LOVE The Night Watch!
‘Wow! Max Craigie and his team are back in this amazing book and they bring with it a little bit of everything! A murder, a suicide, some suspense, intrigue, action, police, dead lawyers, twists, turns, a bit of corruption and serial killers!’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘This is the book that you are desperate to finish so you know ‘who did it’, but on the other hand you don’t want it to come to an end.’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘Once again Neil Lancaster has written an absolute blinder. It starts off at a furious pace and doesn't let up.’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘A brilliant addition to the series and Neil is now an auto-buy author for me. Roll on the next one...’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘The pace doesn’t let up at all and Neil keeps you guessing with his clever dialogue and excellent plot. Loved it. You won’t be disappointed with The Night Watch.’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘A very enjoyable read... I was engrossed until the very last page!’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

The Night Watch is a killer concept, an unflinching look at generational trauma and the mind’s reaction. Suffused with menace…it’s bloody brilliant.

To follow a series with a sense of abandonment there have to be certain elements that scream to them. The X factor – something that keeps them coming back for more, the DS Max Craigie series is no exception. Travelling the pages is like walking a tightrope, danger threatens to knock the characters askew. There are so many elements that just make this series work – flawed characters. The realism of human nature. Betrayal. Raw storytelling.

Neil Lancaster’s storytelling is like no one else. The police procedural should be tackled with a finesse that only a few authors can pull off with any sense of realism. Lancaster does just that. As an ex Police Officer, you are transported into the seedy world of criminal activity, and the work that goes into bringing that person to justice. It’s a team effort and you get a feel for that in The Night Watch.

Some stories start with a feather falling from the sky, The Night Watch starts with a barrel of powder exploding in your face. Hardened crime enforcer, Scott Paterson is found slumped against a tree with his throat slit on the grounds of a golf club. He had just been released from remand on a not proven charge so he was feeling quite jolly with himself until of course he met his end. The police are in the difficult position of trying to fathom just who could overpower him – a man mountain weighing around 18 stone wouldn’t just comply if you asked nicely. There’s just one small coincidence – Fergus Grigor has turned up dead at the bottom of a cliff at Dunnet Head (loved how we had a connection to Caithness and Sutherland. As a Golspie girl it was great to have those vivid images of Dunnet,) He was the Solicitor that got Paterson released so it all smells a touch rank.

DS Max Craigie and his team, Policing Standards Reassurance Team, sniff and stamp out police corruption.  DI Ross Fraser, DC Janie Calder, and their analyst, Norma, act on the information gained from Shuggie Gibson – a Journalist with grit, determination, and an ethos for doing the right thing. He informs Craigie and his team that the killer is a Police Officer. He doesn’t need to question this information too far – a taser, the nature of the victims, and the killing itself scream a vigilante on a mission.

The Night Watch also examines the humanity of these incredible characters We see the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder and how it manifests itself. There are so many layers to this story that just left the reader feeling completely immersed in the case. A fly on the wall, we get to experience the nuances of human action and reaction. It was perfect *insert chef’s kiss*


image - The Night Watch (DS Max Craigie #3) by Neil Lancaster

I joined the RAF in 1983 where I served as a Military Policeman for six years,  in the UK, Germany, Cyprus and the Falkland Islands, mostly as a patrol dog handler. In 1990 I joined the Metropolitan Police where I worked in a number of roles as a Detective investigating the most serious of crimes in the capital and beyond.  I was a covert policing specialist using all sorts of  tactics to obtain evidence against murderers, human traffickers, drug dealers and fraudsters.

 Since leaving the Met in 2015 I have lived in the Scottish Highlands where I now write crime and thriller novels alongside work as a broadcaster and commentator on true crime documentaries.    

My Novak series was an Audible number 1 bestseller and the DS Craigie novel, Dead Man’s Grave has been long listed for the McIlvanney prize for the best Scottish crime novel of 2021.

Neil Lancaster

five stars - The Night Watch (DS Max Craigie #3) by Neil Lancaster