Containment, Vanda Symon: Book Review

A tense, edge-of-your-seat thriller which ticks all the right boxes – read Containment by Vanda Symon.

The plot:

Chaos reigns in the sleepy village of Aramoana on the New Zealand coast, when a series of shipping containers wash up on the beach and looting begins.

Detective Constable Sam Shephard experiences in the desperation of the scavengers first-hand, and ends up in an ambulance, nursing her wounds and puzzling an assault that let her assailant for dead.

What appears to be a clear-cut case of a cargo shop running aground soon takes a more sinister turn when a skull is found in the sand, and the body of a diver is pulled from the sea… a diver who didn’t drown from diving.

As first officer at the scene, Sam is handed the case, and she must put together an increasingly confusing series of clues to get to the bottom of the mystery that may still have more victims…

These books make for the best reading experience

Starting at the beginning, I feel like Symon deserves the award for the most gripping openings of her books. I’ve not been disappointed yet, three books in. They always set the pace for an adrenaline-filled thriller.

Containment is the third book in the Sam Shepherd series – read my review of book one, Overkill, here. I’ve also devoured book two, The Ringmaster, and can definitely say that this is a series you do not want to miss out on. Trust me. All three books can be read as a stand-alone, but you might not get the same attachment to the characters, so worth starting from the beginning.

I said in my review of Overkill that it’s one of those thrillers which you read even when you’re brushing your teeth, because those two minutes are valuable, and this is very much the same with Containment. It’s fast-paced and chapters fly by without you realising.

The story itself is incredible and gripping – there’s much more than meets the eye. I love how Symon doesn’t go too over the top, making her stories realistic, but then also making sure they are never predictable nor simple.

You will not see the ending coming, and you will not be disappointed.

This book definitely had its moments which made me chuckle and also cringe because of some of the horrifying descriptions (not mad). I really love Symon’s writing – lots of conversations paired with police procedural makes it a quick but fulfilling read.

I love alllllllll of the characters in this series, but this one definitely focused more on the police force than the other background characters who I literally can’t wait to hear more about. I’m sure the family, possible partner and flatmate/bestfriend will make more of an appearance for the next book (there better be a next book x10!), as it feels like Containment was ‘the calm before the storm’.

I really love the protagonist in all her mighty self. It’s great to see a young woman in the police force who, despite being pushed to the side, is clearly developing and I sorta want her as my best friend.

These books make for the best reading experience, and I’d highly recommend getting engrossed from the first page. 5/5 stars for the whole series so far.

Containment, Vanda Symon, RRP £8.99 (paperback); Book Depository 

Pages: 266

Publisher: Orenda

Genre: Thriller/ Police Procedural

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