Review of 'The Canongate Strangler'

The Canongate Strangler by Angus McAllister

canongate_strangler.jpg Edward Middleton, a respectable lawyer in Edinburgh finds himself witnessing the stalking and eventual strangulation of an innocent woman as though it was he himself doing it - through the eyes of the murderer. Over time as the killer repeats his acts on other woman he can feel and see everything the murderer does but seems to be unable to effect the outcome, in fact, the killer seems to enjoy being watched and revels in it. As Middleton gets more and more into trying to stop the madness the reader can see how it is effecting him – making him more like the devil he chases than he knows.

Told in the form of a written account penned by Middleton in jail this is a disturbing account of a man slowly losing his mind due to circumstances beyond his control. It is also the story of a man struggling to come to terms with the demon that is inside of him with the climax particularly poignant.

I found this book fairly nasty to read but certainly interesting. Written in a fairly engaging way it does somewhat lag in parts with Middleton's inner struggles and problems with his family replayed over and over but it does strike me as being realistic in that respect (“The Telltale Heart” springs to mind here). Certainly a dark read…It is not at all cheerful with little chance for redemption of any of the main characters.

Rating: “It is OK but I have some issues”

Review Date: 2014-12-31

Genre: Crime/Mystery

Publisher: Dog and Bone

Publication Date: 1990