IQ by Joe Ide – Published by Weidenfeld & Nicholson in 2017- ISBN: 978-1-474-60718-6 (PB)
The author is a Japanese American (his surname is pronounced E-day); this is his debut thriller and the private eye he has invented, African American Isaiah Quintabe (IQ by name possessing by nature a brilliant IQ) is an electrifying and original invention, a Sherlock Holmes of our times, from the mean, tough streets of East Long Beach. IQ, a high school drop-out and loner, is a detective with impressive powers of observation and deduction coupled with a huge range of practical skills and he’s the one who rights a wrong and solves the crimes the LAPD won’t or can’t. With his side-kick Dodson he faces his first big test – to find out who wants to murder celebrated rapper Calvin Wright, who records under the name Black the Knife, who’s reduced to jelly and driven mental when he’s attacked by a 130lb pit bull terrier. This is The Hound of the Baskervilles in a thrilling re-invention. Skillfully interwoven between the incidents taking place in 2013 is the backstory of 2005-2006. It’s here that we learn about Marcus, IQ’s older brother, whose absence prompted IQ to become a detective. It is the crackling one-liners, the energy of the dialogue and the superb characterisation that make the story come alive and render the book unputdownable. The reader will find him/herself hotly anticipating the release of a series of novels the author has been signed up to write.
Reviewer: Serena Fairfax