Helen Fitzgerald : Worst Case Scenario

Today I am pleased to be sharing my review of Worst Case Scenario. It is written with thanks to Anne Cater and Orenda Books for inviting me to join the blog tour and for my copy of the book.


Mary Shields is a moody, acerbic probation offer, dealing with some of Glasgow’s worst cases, and her job is on the line.

Liam Macdowall was imprisoned for murdering his wife, and he’s published a series of letters to the dead woman, in a book that makes him an unlikely hero – and a poster boy for Men’s Rights activists.

Liam is released on licence into Mary’s care, but things are far from simple. Mary develops a poisonous obsession with Liam and his world, and when her son and Liam’s daughter form a relationship, Mary will stop at nothing to impose her own brand of justice … with devastating consequences.

A heart-pounding, relentless and chilling psychological thriller, rich with deliciously dark and unapologetic humour, Worst Case Scenario is also a perceptive, tragic and hugely relevant book by one of the most exciting names in crime fiction.


I must be honest and say that Worst Case Scenario was not what I was expecting. However, this is far from a criticism. Fitzgerald has a matter of fact style, and writes with humour and honesty. Whilst this was not shocking for me as such, it did give the novel a freshness that makes it stand out from the crowd and made me think more closely about the themes within it.

Fitzgerald’s characters are the creation of a genius and this begins, but by no means ends, with Mary. Mary is in her fifties  but she is not the conservative middle aged woman I read about so often. She has desires, frustrations and fears and she’s not afraid to express them. This makes Mary a character that I felt I could empathise with and root for.

There are also sections of Worst Case Scenario written.in the form of letters from the offenders with whom Mary works. I felt this gave considerable insight into the mindset of an offender and helped me to understand the risk they posed as Mary became more involved with them.

I have friends and family who work in this area of public service and I was fascinated by the insight Fitzgerald gave us into the day to day routines. Worst Case Scenario is thoroughly researched and I felt that this gave the novel a political edge which created an extra layer for the reader to think about.

Worst Case Scenario is available from Amazon.

You can follow the blog tour here :


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