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Reviewed by Caitlin Lyle Farley for Readers' Favorite
Charlie is returning home from her job as a nightclub bouncer when she’s caught up in an attempted robbery. She intervenes and gets stabbed in the side. The two robbers kill another woman, but her daughter escapes. Across the street, Iona, a cyber crime detective who isn’t supposed to be there, looks on helplessly, knowing she can’t intervene. Jimmy was once a powerful crime boss, but he now lies dying in a hospital bed. He’s incensed when his most trusted employees report their involvement in the blundered robbery. Jimmy decides to spend his last days trying to do the right thing, even if it means becoming a grass. All of them feel the silent tug between light and dark, a struggle Cal becomes part of as he finds himself caught between the friendly manifestation of London’s hopes and ambitions, and the mysterious woman who embodies all the darkness of London’s inhabitants.
The characters in Metropolitan Dreams are easy to relate to and engaging, but more than that, they exude a genuineness and realism that few authors can achieve. Mark A. King’s writing is fluid and peppered with just enough colloquial dialogue to keep the reader firmly in London. The plot intertwines the fantastical aspect of the the two spirits of London with the more realistic one of organised crime. The threads of both these sides of the story are equally intriguing and kept me wondering how it would all come together. Metropolitan Dreams is thought-provoking and original. This debut novel displays an impressive amount of writing skill, stamping Mark A. King as an author to keep an eye on.