Anyone who loved the first installment of the Luke Sackville series by S.J. Richards will love this second book revisiting the ex-cop turned ethics enforcer and his ragtag team of investigators as they try to save more than just their company.

About the Book

Ex-DCI Luke Sackville could not have predicted the challenges he would face when he joined Filchers, a business outsourcing company, as their Head of Ethics.

He and his team are catapulted into helping MI6 thwart the activities of an international terrorist organisation. Initial suspicions centre on money laundering, but when women are abducted and bodies start to turn up it becomes clear there is a lot more at stake.

The risks are high and there is danger at every turn as the tendrils of the organisation reach into the home lives of more than one of Luke’s team.

Black Money is the second in the Luke Sackville crime series. If you like a team you can root for then you’ll love this page-turner. Perfect for fans of JD Kirk, LJ Ross, JM Dalgleish, David J Gatward and Alex Smith.

My Thoughts

If you love a good crime thriller with an intriguing twist, S.J. Richards is your man. He has created something unique here. We often see sleuths who are ex-police set up as private detectives or security workers. We also see journalists or bakers or similar professionals somehow solving crimes better than the bumbling cops. But Richards has taken these two tropes of related, but different genres, and made something new. Maybe it’s a cozy crossover, but I don’t think that’s what it’s supposed to be.

We have Luke, our broken, brusque, but loveable ex-cop leading the pack of misfit, but equally delightful team of new investigators through this strange world of corporate ethics. Not one of them is experienced in investigations, but somehow all are better than the cops and have immeasurable talent. As both a cozy mystery and a thriller fan, it’s the sweet spot in the middle I love! And the sometimes dark humor with which Richards weaves his tale absolutely delights me. Outside of the occasional cozy mystery, I’ve never seen a crime/mystery writer that offered such comedy.

Like so many other reviewers, Josh is probably my favorite. I enjoyed his new friend Mandy this go around. I really hope we’ll see more of her in the future. But I also really loved getting to know some of the other characters more this time around.

The entire storyline this time was absolutely fascinating, and terrifying. How easily either thing could happen to any female presenting person. Especially in the world of rideshares and food delivery, the next generation might be more trusting than previous ones. It’s definitely something we have to consider while raising the world’s children.

I am so grateful to the author and Love Books Tours for including me on this tour, and I absolutely can’t wait to start the next one! I can’t wait to read the next one and see what the group will get up to next.

Who’s It For?

If you love a good crime book, especially one with great twists and sometimes dark humor. This book does cover some very dark and disturbing topics, so please be very cognizant of the content warnings.

Content Warnings: Kidnapping, Child Abuse, Sexual Assault, Nonconsensual Prostitution, Human Trafficking, Murder, Violence, Torture, Infidelity, Parental Death, Child Death, Spousal Death,

About the Author

Let’s get one thing straight: my name’s Steve. I’ve never been called ‘SJ’ but Steve Richards is a political writer hence the pen name.

I was born in Bath and have lived at various times on an irregular clockwise circle around England. After university in Manchester my wife and I settled in Macclesfield before moving to Bedfordshire then a few years ago back to Somerset. We now live in Croscombe, a lovely village just outside Wells, with our 2 sprightly cocker spaniels.

I’ve always loved writing but have only really had the time to indulge myself since taking early retirement. My daughter is a brilliant author (I’m not biased of course) which is both an inspiration and – because she’s so good – a challenge. After a few experiments, and a couple of completed but unsatisfactory and never published novels, I decided to write a crime fiction series as it’s one of the genres I most enjoy.


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