‘A timely, powerful and gorgeously readable novel that represents everything that is good and important about the crime fiction genre’ Irish Times
1978: The National Front is gaining ground in Hackney. To counter their influence, anti-fascist groups launch the Carnival Against Racism in Victoria Park. Observing the event is Detective Constable Patrick Noble, charged with investigating racist attacks in the area and running Spycops in both far-right and left wing groups. As Noble’s superiors are drawn further into political meddling, he’s inveigled into a plot against the embattled Labour government as the Winter of Discontent begins to bite.
1983: Under a disciplinary cloud after a Spycops op ended in tragedy, Noble is offered a reprieve by an old mentor. He is dispatched in the early hours to Stoke Newington police station, where a young black man has died in suspicious circumstances. This is Thatcher’s Britain now, a new world that Noble unwittingly helped to usher in, where racial tensions are weaponised by those in power. His investigation will expose the dark heart of a nation at war with itself.
‘Gripping’ The Times
‘Enthralling’ Sunday Times
‘A propulsive crime novel’ Guardian
‘One of our very best contemporary crime writers’ David Peace
Stylish and pacy, White Riot throbs with a restless, punky energy, bringing Hackney of the late 70s and early 80s compellingly and disturbingly to life. A full-throated, swaggering roar of a book -- Lucy Caldwell White Riot is an electrifying novel of politics, the counterculture, and music as a powerful force. In Suzi Scialfa, Thomas has given us a pioneering character - a female journalist, forging her way in a man's world; you believe in her, root for her, want to hear more. I loved this book -- Laura Barton Police and thieves, punks and spycops. White Riot captures the raw energy of the times in spectacular fashion, evoking a visceral narrative of power and corruption -- Jake Arnott Joe Thomas takes on the inflammable end of the Seventies, when Rock Against Racism took the National Front head on and Margaret Thatcher turned the Winter of Discontent into her own Springtime . . . Like Daniel Rachel's Walls Come Tumbling Down meets David Peace's GB84 in a dark labyrinth of bent coppers, sleeping policemen, political polarity and the greatest sounds of the dirtiest decade -- Cathi Unsworth This book does not mess about. Punchy pithy prose page to page. Thrilling, entertaining, expertly crafted - a winner in every way. Loved it -- Ashley Hickson-Lovence Enthralling -- John Dugdale * Sunday Times * Gripping . . . Deeply moving . . . A love letter to London, seething with outrage, that leads you keen to read its planned sequels -- Mark Sanderson * The Times * A propulsive crime novel. Thomas ably captures local community anger, interracial tensions and especially the foreboding atmosphere . . . This ambitious work on a big canvas is an admirable attempt at portraying a fraught and fracturing nation * Guardian * Captures the searing energy and polarised nature of the capital in the late 1970s and early 1980s . . . Thomas creates a potent drama from the counterculture of a period when Rock Against Racism and the Anti-Nazi League were battling prejudice. White Riot adroitly blends fact and fiction. -- Martin Chilton * Independent * With real life and fictional characters rubbing shoulders in a turbo-charged and multi-layered narrative, this is truly a State of Britain thriller . . . A genuine, undiluted 'punk' epic, with a ready-made soundtrack and I can't wait for the next instalment -- Maxim Jakubowski * Crime Time * A timely, powerful and gorgeously readable novel that represents everything that is good and important about the crime fiction genre -- Declan Burke * Irish Times *
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