Hidden In Plain Sight – William Warwick # 2 – Book Review
My Rating – 4.5 out of 5
Plot Summary – Hidden in Plain Sight
It’s Jeffrey Archer’s annual outing this time, featuring the fictional Detective William Warwick. This follows the first book of the series ‘Nothing Ventured‘ of 2019. The entire series is a spin-off from the earlier series of Clifton Chronicles, in which the main protagonist Harry Clifton writes a Bestselling Detective series featuring William Warwick. This series brings that fictional fact to life and due to the amazing skills of the author, a simple Police detective story becomes a celebrated work of brilliant storytelling.
Beth – ‘Can I ask you a personal question, Josephine?’
Josephine – ‘Anything.’
Beth – ‘Have you ever considered divorcing your husband?’
Josephine – ‘Divorce never. Murder several times.’From Hidden in Plain Sight
Along with the main characters from the first book, the villain makes a return too! Miles Faulkner, the wealthy Art thief, is still troubling William’s professional life. William, in this one, gets promoted to a Detective Sergeant with the Metropolitan Police and is transferred to the Drugs Squad. Their first task is to bring down the notorious Drug Baron Assem Rashidi, known in the trade as Viper. Rashidi leads a public life as the MD of the Tea company, while in private he runs a production center of Cocaine.
In the other continuing thread from the earlier book, Miles Faulkner, is now serving a suspended four year sentence for Art theft and fighting a divorce suit with his wife Christina. He settles on giving up all his Artwork, his estate and the Flat in Eaton Square in his divorce settlement. But, unbeknownst to Christina, he plans to part with none of his wealth. In collusion with his counsel and sometimes without his knowledge, he plans a daring move – one designed to remove the paintings from Christina’s grasp and wrest control of his mansion too, by bankrupting Christina.
Meanwhile, William is also on his track to nab Miles on a drugs charge, based on inputs of Adrian Heath, a small time drugs peddler and William’s old schoolmate. But will another one of Miles’ canny tricks help him ease out of the police trap? With his trademark surprises and twists, Jeffrey Archer takes us on a jolly good ride. While the story line is rather ordinary, his extraordinary skills as a storyteller, ensures that there’s not one dull moment during the pan of the whole novel!
In the course of this novel, William gets married to his long standing girlfriend Beth and they become proud parents to twins – a girl and a boy. William’s sister Grace, meanwhile, assists their father Sir Julian on an important case and looks like she’ll grow into a fine Barrister, much to her family’s pride. While on William’s professional front the arrest and conviction of Assem Rashidi becomes paramount and his impregnable fortress, first has to be traced then breached and destroyed, so that he cannot operate again.
Thus begins a surveillance of Rashidi, his movements and how he’s protected. The search for his den, where the drugs are manufactured and distributed from, is facilitated by a confidential informant, who is supplanted as a mole in Rashidi’s operation. With a lot of hard police work, finally the details are visible and the operation to net Rashidi and shut down his operation gets underway.
Conclusion – Book Review of Hidden in Plain Sight
Well, this is an extremely well written novel, as expected from Mr. Archer, where he fleshes out an ordinary story to extraordinary heights with deft touches of his genius. There are unexpected twists and turns at every corner and the witty prose is a perfect example of the well known British sense of humour – dry, laconic but quite funny! Perfect for a holiday read, it is well timed at the upcoming Holiday season. Pick it up if you haven’t read it yet, you’ll be left with a satiated feeling at having read a great novel!