Book Review: Kill the Father, by Sandrone Dazieri

Publisher:  Simon & Schuster UK

Publication date:  

9th February 2017 (Hardback) | 5th January 2017 (Kindle)


kill-the-father-coverKill the Father is a wily old fox of a book. Its unwavering intense plot artfully clashes with moments of irrational analysis and a conspiracy on ambitiously immoral scale.

And what flawed characters we have – all the better to love them more! For starters, there’s the human husk that is Dante Torre and the terminally-haunted Deputy Captain Columba Caselli. Both of whom are compelled to attack a case that would prove to be so challenging it may cost them their lives. 

The catalyst that pitches this unlikely pairing together is the rising chill of unease surrounding a missing child and his brutally murdered mother. The authorities have hauled the boy’s father in for the heinous deed, but the chief officer of Rome’s mobile police squad asks his trusted Deputy Captain to step out from her sick leave to ‘unofficially’ poke around the investigation, as higher ranking officials threaten to close it down before considering all the options.

Columba’s only instruction is to deny knowledge of her involvement as she enlists the assistance of ‘the boy in the silo’, the famous Dante Torre, known to have escaped the clutches of an evil kidnapper known as ‘The Father’. After being kept captive for eleven years his personal, harrowing experience will prove to be invaluable as the child’s disappearance resembles ‘The Father’s’ handiwork, a reality that hits like a kick to the gut.

For all his eccentricities I love Dante. The way he channels his crippling claustrophobia and obsessions into spotting details others have missed is remarkable. His mind works in astonishing ways but it’s surprising he can still walk, let alone solve a case of this magnitude, as he practically eats cigarettes, inhales more coffee than fresh air, and rattles like a maraca from consuming a random concoction of pills dictated by his changeable self-medication.

Columba endeavours to resist the PTSD that causes involuntary havoc at the most inopportune moments and spends a lot of time either contemplating a past event referred to as the ‘Disaster’, or her resignation from the department. Part of her time is spent running around in a hospital gown with just her police issue boots for protection, or meeting with unsavoury characters whose uncharacteristic behaviour surprises even her. After that she pretty much does as she pleases.

These two make a tenacious double-act, although they behave like estranged siblings as they strive to endure the grim awkwardness of their situation and each other! Preferred emotional reactions to life threatening situations are restricted to a few finely-tuned sardonic words, so their personal space remains intact. 

The impact and ingenuity of Kill the Father took my breath clean away. With each new chapter a wealth of complexity is waiting to be unwrapped as the shadow of ‘The Father’ grows longer. You can’t help but root for the good guys as they battle their vulnerabilities, a merciless motive, and countless obstacles in their relentless pursuit for justice.  

One particular observation during an interview with the parents of missing child was quite arresting:

It’s as if the two of them had been hollowed out from within by some disease, the kind that takes you apart bit by bit without ever finishing you off completely.

Rating:  4.5/5

(My thanks to the publisher and Emma Finnigan for arranging a copy of this brilliant title. It goes without saying that it’s my pleasure to provide this unbiased review.)


(Courtesy of Amazon UK)

In this fascinatingly complex thriller, two people, each shattered by their past, team up to solve a series of killings and abductions…

When a woman is beheaded in a park outside Rome and her six-year-old son goes missing, the police unit assigned to the case sees an easy solution: they arrest the woman’s husband and await his confession. But the Chief of Rome’s Major Crimes unit doubts things are so simple. Secretly, he lures to the case two of Italy’s top analytical minds: Deputy Captain Colomba Caselli, a fierce, warrior-like detective still reeling from having survived a bloody catastrophe, and Dante Torre, a man who spent his childhood trapped inside a concrete silo. Fed through the gloved hand of a masked kidnapper who called himself ‘The Father’, Dante emerged from his ordeal with crippling claustrophobia but, also, with an unquenchable thirst for knowledge and hyper-observant capacities.

All evidence suggests that ‘The Father’ is back and active after being dormant for decades. Indeed, he has left tell-tale signs that signal he’s looking forward to a reunion with Dante. But when Columba and Dante begin following the ever-more-bizarre trail of clues, they grasp that what’s really going on is darker than they ever imagined.


At the time of writing this review for the hardback copy the Kindle version was just £0.99p – TOTAL BARGAIN so I purchased a copy too!


(Courtesy of Amazon UK)

Sandrone Dazieri is the bestselling author of eight novels and more than fifty screenplays. Kill the Father, the first in a planned series featuring Colomba Caselli and Dante Torre, is his UK debut.



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