"Terms of Restitution" by Denzil Meyrick is an enjoyable and fast paced thriller/crime novel that leaves its readers almost as breathless as it leaves many of its characters, though in a rather different way.
The publisher's blurb sets the scene nicely: "Gangland boss Zander Finn is so sickened by the brutal murder of his son in a Paisley pub that he decides to change his life. Following the advice of his priest and mentor, he moves clandestinely to London and becomes an ambulance driver. But when his old second-in-command tracks him down in a London street, Finn knows he must return. Both his real family and his crime family face an existential threat from Albanian mobsters determined to take control of the Scottish underworld. Facing the forces of law and order and a mysterious Italian woman, Finn struggles for survival in a rollercoaster ride of brutality, tenderness and misplaced loyalties and the utterly unexpected. The path to redemption is a perilous one, and it begins to look like Finn should have stayed in London."
You get the feeling that the author really enjoyed writing this book. You can imagine him setting up his varied cast of interesting and entertaining central characters; then painting in his background of criminal gangs in Paisley and Glasgow and the interlopers from Albania; then adding his overlay of the forces of law and order; then letting the whole thing run free to see where it took him and his readers. The story as it emerges from the pages of the book leads the reader into a remarkably violent version of west central Scotland that has a body count that at times feels like it's going to give the first day of the Battle of the Somme a run for its money.
But it's not just blood and gore. There is a worthwhile and enjoyable story here too and the characters are well drawn and, where they are meant to be, engaging. "Terms of Restitution" is less Tartan Noir than Tartan Rouge and is a book we'd certainly recommend.