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“This was the first of the Inspector Lynley mystery series by Elizabeth George. Wonderful characters and a gripping plot!”see full review » see other reviews »
Didn’t Like It
“It was quite boring to me. The British terms made me confused.”see full review » see other reviews »
“It was quite boring to me. The British terms made me confused.”Lisa wrote this review Monday, October 28, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Roberta Tey is found standing over her decapitated father with an axe and tells those who find her, "I did it. I'm not sorry." Scotland Yard's Lynley and Havers are sent to investigate.
Although I could find fault, this was an engrossing and ultimately moving read. The major jarring fault for me were two instances of coincidence, and one in particular I thought stretched things too far--otherwise I'd say as a mystery the plotting is exemplary, with one particular twist outside the main line of the murder mystery that came close to moving me to tears.
That moment involved investigating Detective Sergeant Barbara Havers, a character type that comes close to cliche in mystery fiction I've read--the female police officer with a huge chip on her shoulder that makes her impossible to work with. The "short and dumpy" working class Havers is partnered with Inspector Thomas Lynley, who is everything she is not and hates. A "golden boy," Lynley is a handsome, rich titled charmer. It's more the story of these two forging a partnership than the murder mystery in rural Yorkshire that grabbed me. George is terrific at showing their disconnect. In Lynley's case it's more that he doesn't know what Havers has to deal with--and she's not letting him in. In Havers' case it's her class prejudices and hasty presumptions that lead her to grossly misread Lynley.
While I wouldn't call George's prose style literary--it's clean and straightforward in structure and style--it is stronger than most genre fiction even in this first novel. She's a great storyteller, with a gift for making you care about her characters, and I was propelled through the 400 plus pages in practically one sitting. There is disturbing material in this novel--be warned. But I thought it ultimately warming and well worth the read.”
“A great mystery series. I especially like that Lynley and Havers did not automatically get along, that made it more real and more human. The mystery itself was very intricate, which made it a very intriguing read. The end was grim for me, as far as subject matter, but I do like how the book was resolved. I thoroughly enjoyed the characters and the writing and will continue to read her Lynley series. ”StarWars Fan! wrote this review Friday, July 19, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Borrowed from Dr. McD”Carol wrote this review Sunday, May 12, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Lynley and havers investigate the murder of a man in Yorkshire to which his daughter confessed but the local priest didn't believe her; his wife had abandoned the family, another daughter had run off; they find a terrible secret in the family; good if disturbing story”Rita B wrote this review Wednesday, May 1, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“A young girl is found clutching an axe, standing over the headless body of her father, and all she will say is "I did it. I'm not sorry." Political tensions in the local police force require the assistance of Inspector Lynley. Unfortunately, he has just been partnered with the unlikeable Havers, whose hatred of the upper class is rivaled only by her hatred of Lynley himself.
I've loved the BBC mystery series for a long time and when I realized they were based on books I couldn't wait to try one out. I'm really glad I started with the television show, because otherwise the tensions between them would have turned me off this series. Havers is so unpleasant it's absurd, and their relationship completely overshadows the actual mystery. I know their relationship cools down and it does get better, so I'll be giving later books a chance.”
“I finally finished this book. It did not take me forever because I didn't enjoy the book. It took me forever because there was a group of us fighting over it at the library and we kept recalling it from each other. I finally got my turn again and finished my first Detective Lynley mystery.
This was a very interesting mystery full of complicated characters. Detective Lynley's character unfolds as the story goes on and reveals itself to his partner Barbara Havers. You never fully get to know him, though. There is always something held back. Even the suspects have something held back from their character until the very end. Until finally the mystery is solved, with an unexpected resolution, and everything begins to make sense. A truly well-written mystery novel. The content is a little disturbing though. This is not a British cozy mystery.”
“This is a thriller that requires greater emotional involvement than the average. In fact, given the tone of the book, calling it a thriller seems inappropriate. Even with the teensy bit of redemption at the end, this is not a book if you are looking for something cheerful given personal tragedies dot the landscape and are unveiled like someone viciously pulling band-aid from the skin. However, Elizabeth George does come across as a very skillful writer. I shall read more but after I have found something more cheery to lighten my heart first. ”Raji C wrote this review Wednesday, November 28, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Start of a new series. I had trouble getting thru this as I had to put it down so many times. I'm going to go forth as I think this is a worthy series and I like the development of the characters.”Jody S wrote this review Tuesday, November 27, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No