Wolf (Jack Caffrey #7) by Mo Hayder
When a vagrant—the Walking Man—finds a dog wandering alone with the words “HELP US” written on its collar, he’s sure it’s a desperate plea from someone in trouble and calls on Detective Inspector Jack Caffery to investigate. Caffery is reluctant to get involved—until the Walking Man promises new information regarding the childhood abduction of Caffery’s brother in exchange for the detective’s help tracking down the dog’s owners. Caffery has no idea who or what he is searching for, but one thing he is sure of: it’s a race against time.
Meanwhile, the Anchor-Ferrers, a wealthy local family, are fighting for their lives in their remote home ten miles away. Two men have tricked their way into the house and are holding the family for ransom. Yet as the captors’ demands become increasingly bizarre and humiliating, it becomes clear that this is more than a random crime—it’s a personal vendetta.
My Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
The series takes a bit of a side road with this book. The storyline that has been building between Jack and Flea is entirely sidelined to focus on Jack, his relationship with The Walking Man and his search for an answer to what happened to his brother. We already know the answer and it’s difficult to see Jack battling both with not knowing what happened and the eventual revelation of his own unwitting involvement.
Jack’s “crusade” is intertwined with the abduction and torture of a family. The connection is the family dog that escapes and ends up in Jack’s company courtesy of The Walking Man. This is an interesting concept and works well. The characters of Molina and Honey don’t fully work for me but are definitely integral to the story.
There is an overall feeling of sadness for Jack but never more so than in this book which also seems to be the end of his story. It’s good to bring his brother’s story to a conclusion but I would like to see him come back once again. His story has been one of the best I’ve read and I will miss it. The author has written other books that I will move on to but Jack will be hard to beat.