I’m a big fan of the Diamond Brothers detective series so I was very happy when a new adventure was published – the first novel since South by South East (1991) and the first story of any length since The Greek Who Stole Christmas (2007). The proceeds of this new book are going to charity.
It goes without saying that I really enjoyed Where Seagulls Dare, although the sense of time is amusingly odd. The book is clearly set in our current decade, but the events of The Blurred Man (2003) are noted as happening only a few months ago. Anyway, the narrator Nick has been a young teenager ever since the first book, The Falcon’s Malteser (1986). He should be approaching his fifties by now, while older brother Tim – the world’s worst detective – might be collecting his pension! But I love that these characters are timeless.
The story is that the Diamond Brothers are tasked with finding a missing tech genius. They run into a gang of thugs and everything goes pear-shaped very quickly, as it turns out that they need to infiltrate a far-right organisation who plan to control the UK. Unlike the other books in the series, this one has interior illustrations. They are by Mark Beech, whose style is very similar to that of Tony Ross, the cover illustrator. I liked the pictures as they were suitably madcap.
Action, fast pace, clever plotting and puns galore, as always in this series. There was even a sly reference to the Alex Rider books. If you haven’t read any Diamond Brothers, you can still begin with this one as everything is explained, but I would recommend starting from the beginning. They’re not just for kids, either, as there are references to detective and thriller films that only adults would know.
Published by Walker Books, 2022.