ARC Book Review: The Smiling Man (Aidan Waits) by Joseph Knox

Release Date: January 22, 2019
Publisher: Random House
Format: ebook
Pages: 373 pages
Genre:  Mystery/Thriller
Buy: Kindle | Hardcover | Audio


Aidan Waits is back on the night shift, the Manchester PD dumping ground for those too screwed-up for more glamorous work. But the monotony of petty crimes and lonesome nights is shattered when he and his partner are called to investigate a break-in The Palace, an immense, empty hotel in the center of the city.

There they find the body of a man. He is dead. The tags have been cut from his clothes, his teeth have been filed down, and even his fingertips have been replaced…
And he is smiling.

But as Waits begins to unravel the mystery of the smiling man, he becomes a target. Someone wants very badly to make this case disappear, and as their threats escalate, Aidan realizes that the answers may lie not only with the wealthy families and organized criminals connected to the Palace, but with a far greater evil from his own past.

To discover the smiling man’s identity, he must finally confront his own.


I really liked this book and really wish that I had read the first one of the series before this.  I just feel like I missed some important history regarding how Aidan got put on nights. This book gives you what you need to know but I feel like there is underlying baggage that I would have loved to be privy too.

Aiden Waits is actually a very good detective, unfortunately he also had a checkered past that lead him to drugs and that was his downfall. In this book Aidan and his hand sanitizing lazy superior officer are called to an alarm at an closed hotel when they find a dead man with a smile on his face. Trying to track down what happened to this man Aidan is also constantly blindsided by the Superintendent who loves to throw Aidans past in his face and give him ultimatums, and his phone keeps ringing with only breathing on the other end. As Aidan's world starts spiraling out of control we also see the underlying good cop and kind soul that lies underneath his hard exterior.

Great police procedural with a broken cop who seems to catch hell from all sides all while trying to break free of his past and become a better man. I question how long Aiden will be able to remain a cop and what will happen to him if he isn't but I'm keeping my fingers crossed and enjoying the ride.  Definitely putting this author and this series on my list to keep watching. 

Disclaimer: I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher through in exchange for an honest review.

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