I bought the paperback of The Chessmen by Peter May at the Kildonan Museum in South Uist, a perfect place to pick up a novel set in the bleak but stunningly beautiful landscapes of The Outer Hebrides.
Fin and his mates grew up together in the close knit communities of the island of Lewis, the place where the famous Chessmen were discovered; an island where each group of peoples have their unique identity. In their late teenage years before uni the friends were completely absorbed with music, forming a band which went on to success.
Fin arrives back on the island of his birth from a broken marriage and personal tragedies, leaving behind him his career in the police, only to find himself in the centre of mysteries, even murder. His new job to catch poachers on the estate brings him in direct conflict with his oldest and dearest friend.
This novel is full of flashbacks to the past, which help the reader to understand the complex issues of the present. Fin’s detective mind makes it impossible for him to leave alone the attempt to unravel each mystery, putting his and other lives in grave danger.
A brilliant book! The evocative surroundings wrap around Peter May’s colourful character, whose nicknames describe each perfectly ~ from boy to adulthood. I couldn’t put The Chessmen down and must now go back to read the first in this series.