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White Riot

‘This is the way the world ends…’

When the savagely beaten body of a Muslim student is discovered in a rundown area of Newcastle, tensions rise to breaking point. Blame falls on the far right National Unity party – but for once they appear to be innocent.

Not the best time for Trevor Whitman, ex-70’s radical, to return to his native North East. Haunted by his violent past, Whitman is tormented by disturbing anonymous calls alluding to the murder of a policeman thirty years before. He calls in Donovan’s team to investigate.

But following the death of a supposed suicide bomber, what should be a routine investigation takes a more dangerous turn as the team find themselves the target of a ruthless killer unlike any they have faced before. A killer who will do anything to ensure an explosive thirty-year-old secret remains buried. Anything- no matter who stands in the way. Anything -even orchestrating a brutal race war that will tear the city apart.


“The third tough, topical, Newcastle-based noir crime novel featuring Joe Donovan and his team.  Waites is very good and definitely going places.  Sarah Broadhurst, The Bookseller


“WHITE RIOT is written in the sort of bovver-boots-and-dustbin-lids staccato prose that doesn’t so much leap off the page as threaten to smack the reader in the mouth.  That said, the suspense is fuelled as much by pathos as by sound and fury, and it will reward those who linger to savour its subtleties.”  Laura Wilson, The Guardian

“Hard-hitting, socially-concerned crime of the highest caliber with the potential to emulate Mark Billingham.”  Maxim Jakubowski, The Bookseller

“An intelligent, fast-paced plot about radical groups orchestrating a race riot is only one highlight of Waites’s superb third Joe Donovan thriller (after Bone Machine). In a thoughtful subplot, the British author suggests it’s not shared beliefs that draw some to extremist organizations, but a sense of belonging and acceptance that these groups offer the lost, the displaced and the unloved…Waites masterfully pulls together a cohesive story about fanatical politics filled with surprises and suspense. Fans of Mark Billingham, John Connolly and Ken Bruen will find much to like.” Publishers weekly

“Waites is a fine writer working with a gripping plot about extremist groups plotting to set off a race war in England…readers willing to suspend their disbelief will be richly rewarded.” Frank Sennett, Booklist

“It continues the story of Joe Donovan and his “information brokers” and is full of action and adventure. The many subplots will keep you interested and it is intriguing how they all fit together. If you liked the first two books in this series you will enjoy White Riot as well.”