Today I’m sharing my thoughts on the first book in a new thriller series by Matt Brolly, The Controller.
From the bestselling author of the acclaimed DCI Lambert series comes The Controller, a gripping serial killer thriller introducing Sam Lynch and Special Agent Sandra Rose.
It is six years since special agent Samuel Lynch left the FBI following the disappearance of his son, Daniel. Lynch believes an underground organisation known as The Railroad is responsible and has never stopped searching.
When Special Agent Sandra Rose investigates a house invasion gone wrong, she discovers the assailant has the legendary, and infamous, Railroad tattoo carved onto his back and he claims to know Daniel’s whereabouts.
Rose draws Lynch in to her case, and together they become embroiled in an unparalleled world of violence and evil.
It seems that to see his son again, Lynch will have to confront his greatest fear and face the ultimate test: an encounter with the Railroad’s enigmatic and deadly leader, The Controller.
I feel like it’s been a while since I sat down to this type of crime thriller and I was excited to get stuck into it. I definitely wasn’t disappointed, in fact I am kind of curious as to how this author has not pinged on my radar before now.
The Controller has all the right ingredients a couple of complex cases, a protagonist who crosses the line on occasion, a secret organisation that has you questioning everyone, it really did have me gripped from the beginning. I don’t want to say too much about the plot line but I liked that there was so much going on, the reader is kind of thrust into the action and it doesn’t stop until you reach the end. This is of course helped by the constant questioning of characters intentions and motives, I started to suspect everyone of being part of the organisation and that really added to the tension.
Lynch was the perfect protagonist for this storyline because he had such a personal connection to The Railroad and at the same time had a lot to lose and to gain from trying to figure out who they were and what they wanted. I really liked the partnership between Rose and Lynch, they complimented each other, even though they were in a situation where it is hard to foster trust I liked that they still worked well together.
The only thing that I didn’t really get was that their relationship crosses from professional to personal and I have to say I didn’t really feel the chemistry between them for that. The working partnership I understood but it just didn’t quite make sense to me for them to have anything more. That was only a minor thing though and didn’t in any way detract from the rest of the story.
I am glad that this author is now on my radar and I’ll be looking forward to see what comes next.
Following his law degree where he developed an interest in criminal law, Matt Brolly completed his Masters in Creative Writing at Glasgow University.
He is the bestselling author of the DCI Lambert crime novels, Dead Eyed, Dead Lucky and Dead Embers. The fourth in the series, Dead Time, was released by Canelo in May 2018 and a prequel, Dead Water, will be published in September 2019. In 2020 the first of a new crime series set in the West Country of the UK will be released by Thomas and Mercer (Amazon Publishing).
The Controller, released in May 2019, is the first of a new thriller series set in Texas.
Matt also writes children’s books as M.J. Brolly. His first children’s book, The Sleeping Bug, was released by Oblong Books in December 2018.
Matt lives in London with his wife and their two young children.