Joe Hope is a shakedown guy, who, despite his occupation, is a likeable, decent character who you’ll root for. Kiss Her Goodbye starts with the death of Joe’s daughter, who appears to have committed suicide. Then Joe’s arrested for his wife’s murder—but for once, Joe’s innocent. He’s determined to find out what happened, but when it all unravels, he doesn’t like what he finds.
Guthrie plays the relationship between Joe and his best friend, loan shark Cooper, perfectly. The tension between the two escalates throughout and leads to a brutal, epic finish.
This book’s as dark as they come. Joe falls from the proverbial curb to the gutter, just like in all good noir. The dialogue sizzles; the writing’s poetic and tight; and the atmosphere is that of a shadowy, Edinburgh alleyway. This is modern crime fiction at its best.