The Necessary Death of Lewis Winter: Glasgow Underworld Trilogy #1 by Malcolm Mackay

The Necessary Death of Lewis Winter: Glasgow Underworld Trilogy #1 by Malcolm Mackay

This is a bit of a diversion from my usual fare: but the synopsis and buzz on the book could not be ignored.  Malcolm Mackay has written a crime thriller: dark and gritty and OH so fun!

The Necessary Death of Lewis Winter

Far from my usual fare, I was attracted to the Glasgow setting of this book, because of family ties to the area.  A rough and tough town, the imagery and world building in this story epitomize the grit hiding in the shadows.  Malcolm Mackay may not have converted me to reading more thrillers for review, but I certainly could not put this one down, and was jumping at several points.  The city isn’t in the foreground though, it stands in for any large city with an underworld: the rough edges contrast with the smooth story flow, laden with tension and what-ifs.

You have to appreciate the staccato style writing: short sentences, every word counts for something. While not always an easy style to read, the translation into audiobook and the author’s ability to cram ten words of meaning into a single well-constructed sentence did not fail to impress.  I didn’t LOVE Calum, but I couldn’t get enough of his perspective on his life and those of others, and the revelations in this criminal’s procedural story. A bit of mystery (the when and how, not really who) added to the drama and tension from the story, keeping this fast paced, forward moving story utterly intriguing.

Narration in this story is provided by Angus King, and it was wonderfully done: there were no great diversions in the tone, it stayed very matter-of-fact in keeping with the writing and characters: a bit ‘removed’ from the emotions of it all.  I loved King’s ability to bring the sense of these not so upstanding citizens, with their concerns about job security and image to light.

While not a favorite genre, this book was fresh and unique, and certainly showed me how intriguing and entertaining a well written story in the crime thriller genre can be.


Stars:  Overall 4  Narration 4 Story 4


The Necessary Death of Lewis Winter: Glasgow Underworld Trilogy #1 by Malcolm Mackay

Title: The Necessary Death of Lewis Winter
Author: Malcolm Mackay
Series: Glasgow Underworld Trilogy #1
Genre: Dark-theme, Thriller
Narrator: Angus King
Published by: Hachette Audio, Mantle
ISBN: 023076620X
Published on: 21 April, 2015
Source: Hachette Audio
Pages: 312
Audio Length: 8 Hours: 14 minutes
Rated: four-stars
Get Your Copy: Amazon AllRomance iTunes Kobo Downpour IndieBound Book Depository Google
See this Title on Goodreads

A twenty-nine-year-old man lives alone in his Glasgow flat. The telephone rings; a casual conversation, but behind this a job offer. The clues are there if you know to look for them.

He is an expert. A loner. Freelance. Another job is another job, but what if this organisation wants more?

A meeting at a club. An offer. A brief. A target: Lewis Winter. It's hard to kill a man well. People who do it well know this. People who do it badly find out the hard way. The hard way has consequences.

An arresting, gripping novel of dark relationships and even darker moralities, The Necessary Death of Lewis Winter introduces a remarkable new voice in crime fiction.

See the Glasgow Underworld Trilogy at GoodReads

A copy of this title was provided via Hachette Audio for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.

About Malcolm Mackay

Malcolm Mackay was born and grew up in Stornoway where he still lives. His much-lauded Glasgow-set novels have won the Crime Thriller Book Club Best Read Award and the Deanston Scottish Crime Book of the Year Award and have been shortlisted for the CWA John Creasey New Blood Dagger Award for Best Crime Debut of the Year and the Scottish First Book of the Year Award.


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