Category Archives: Simon Rowell

Review: The Long Game by Simon Rowell

Title: The Long Game by Simon Rowell
Publisher: Text Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Suspense
Length: 288 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley


A summer of relentless heat. A local surfer named Ray Carlson is found dead in a house not far from Portsea back beach. There’s a kitchen knife deep in his chest, and blood everywhere.

Detective Sergeant Zoe Mayer is scarcely back from extended leave, and still wrestling with her demons, but she is assigned the case—alongside her new service dog, Harry, whose instincts help her in unexpected ways.

There’s an obvious suspect for the murder, and Zoe makes an arrest. But it’s all too neat, and none of Zoe’s colleagues believes her theory that the whole thing is a stitch-up.

Except now someone is trying to hunt Zoe down.

Superbly plotted, and vividly set in the beachside suburbs and hilly retreats around Melbourne, The Long Game is a mystery about a tough and clever investigator who won’t give up.


The Long Game by Simon Rowell is a cunning mystery with a marvelous lead protagonist.

Detective Sergeant Zoe Mayer has been on leave for the last several months and she is eager to get back to work. Her first case is the murder of thirty-nine-year-old Ray Carlson who everyone says was a great guy. He is recently separated from his soon to be ex-wife, Donna and he enjoys surfing with his childhood friend Dwayne Harley. With her service dog Harry at her side, Zoe and her partner Detective Senior Constable Charlie Shaw are soon on the hunt for Ray’s killer.

Zoe is an experienced homicide detective who has sharp instincts and a keen intellect. She is quick to reassure Charlie and their boss Detective Inspector Rob Loretti she does not need any coddling. Zoe is not an investigator to take things at face value and she can be tenacious when she has doubts about how solid her case is. She works hard to present a calm exterior even when she is frustrated so no one can doubt her fitness for duty.  She can easily hold her own when some of her fellow detectives try to rattle her.  But will Zoe take unnecessary risks as she attempts to ensure they have the arrested the right person for Ray’s murder?

The Long Game is a riveting police procedural with a well-developed storyline that is fast-paced. Zoe is a crack detective who is willing to follow her hunches in order to make sure justice is served. Charlie is a good partner but he sometimes does not always have Zoe’s back. The investigation into Ray’s death is wrapped up fairly easily but when new information comes to light, Zoe does not hesitate to take a second look at her case.  Despite a few hints here and there, the reason for her extended leave remains shrouded in mystery. With stunning twists and devious turns, Simon Rowell brings this outstanding mystery to a thrilling conclusion.

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Filed under Contemporary, Mystery, Rated B+, Review, Simon Rowell, Text Publishing, The Long Game