Stone Cold Trouble – Amer Anwar

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Trying – and failing – to keep his head down and to stay out of trouble, ex-con Zaq Khan agrees to help his best friend, Jags, recover a family heirloom, currently in the possession of a wealthy businessman. But when Zaq’s brother is viciously assaulted, Zaq is left wondering whether someone from his own past is out to get revenge. 

Wanting answers and retribution, Zaq and Jags set out to track down those responsible. Meanwhile, their dealings with the businessman take a turn for the worse and Zaq and Jags find themselves suspected of murder. 

It’ll take both brains and brawn to get themselves out of trouble and, no matter what happens, the results will likely be deadly. The only question is, whether it will prove deadly for them, or for someone else . . . ?

Stone Cold Trouble marks the second adventure for Zaq and Jags, first seen in Amer Anwar’s brilliant debut, Brothers in Blood which I read towards the end of last year. As with the first book, I polished it off over a couple of sittings – I settled down with a cup of tea to finish the last hundred or so pages, only to discover that my tea had gone cold.

Stone cold.

Yeah, it’s that good. I love the banter between Zaq and his best mate Jags, and it really makes this book stand out. Of course a book needs more than just a great pair of protagonists, and Anwar delivers another cracking read. Though he does seem to rather enjoy putting our boys through a bit of a wringer this time round – I thought that Zaq took a bit of a battering in the first book, but the poor lad takes another pummelling here!

Not quite as much as his brother Tariq – set upon by some thugs and left in a bad way, Zaq and Jags set out to track down his assailants, whilst at the same time trying to get their uncle’s heirloom back from a very shady businessman who you do not want to be on the wrong side of.

I loved this book, and it’s great to kick 2021 off on a high note. Solid five stars, and I’m looking foward to finding out what Amer Anwar has in store for his boys next!

Oh, and be prepared to be hungry reading it – there’s a lot of delicious food in there, and you may find yourself (as I did), craving a couple of pakora or samosas!

Stone Cold Trouble by Amer Anwar is published by Dialogue Books and is out now.

Author: dave

Book reviewer, occasional writer, photographer, coffee-lover, cyclist, spoon carver and stationery geek.

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