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I thoroughly enjoyed this book, populated with vile villains, winsome detectives, and innocent by-standers with interesting backstories. The narration was excellent. I withhold the final star because the police procedure seems to be somewhat unrealistic in several instances, including overlooking clear connection between events, failure to utilize armed response officers, and a senior police officer's distraction by clothes shopping amidst a major, horrific murder investigation. The protagonist's consultations with clairvoyants is also off-putting. I have a hard time believing that such an officer could attain the rank of detective superintendent.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
Peter James is not my cup of tea. The series is to heavy on the personal lives of the characters. I find Roy Grace's obsession with his missing wife, who is mentioned throughout the entire series, just too much. When I was a teenagers my mom watched Days of Our Life's and I could go a year without seeing an episode and yet still somehow know the current storyline. This series is the same. I have read 4 books, randomly sampled throughout the series, and the Roy's missing wife is in all of them.. taking up chapters in the book... after one or two it just gets boring!
Often the dialogue is weak and just doesn't ring true. James has a bad habit of unnecessary repeating the same phrases in his books. In this book 'oh my darling' phrase must be repeated 100 times by the husband they are helping. If the whole series was boiled down and you might have a decent modern detective series and each book would be about half the original length. I just can't appreciate James work. David Thorpe is a good narrator but he didn't have much to work. The quality of the recording is good.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Having just read the first Roy Grace book and thoroughly enjoyed it I dived straight into the second with some gusto and I think that this series will become a favourite of mine. One of the reasons that I say this is that while it has many of the hallmarks of the first book such as the characters and well described Sussex locations it has a different feel and does not simply follow the formula of the first.
This book differed in that it was less of a whodunnit as in the first book, rather more of a howdunnit and it began as a relatively slow burner with more time spent on enriching the characters. Speaking of which the excellent introduction of a thoroughly unpleasant non-PC old dinosaur of a police officer added an additional dimension to the chemistry that I personally liked. The way that the crime was eventually solved was also a small surprise in that the author didn't follow a predictable pattern that must have been tempting to him.
I found the narration of the book very similar to the first book (though see note below, it's not a universal opinion) and liked the narrator for the very same reasons. A bright, lively delivery that helped move the book along at a decent pace.
The only criticisms I would make is that when sounding peeved the narrator tended to fall out of character but this is a very minor thing. Also, I would have liked the bad guys perhaps to have a little more depth to their characters as this, on reflection, was a highlight of the first book.
The book ends with an interview with the author which I think gave an interesting insight into his thinking behind the books. Worth hanging on to listen to.
All thing considered this is shaping up to be a very enjoyable series!
Note: At the time of writing another reviewer seems to have had an entirely different experience from having listened to this audiobook. In particular the narration which she found incredibly monotonous. I would never say that my opinion counts more than that of another but having read that review I even re-listened to some parts of the book and I remain puzzled and have to simply disagree. I will check back with interest to discover what others feel about it.
19 of 22 people found this review helpful
First a little note: Unfortunately, book 1 isn't available on Audible. However, don't let that stop you, you pick the history of the characters up quickly. I'm glad I took the risk.
Now what I thought.
If you, like me, enjoy a decent series, Peter James's character Detective-Super Roy Grace and his second outing in "Looking Good Dead" seems to get this series off to a perfect start. His investigation into the disappearance of a legal assistance takes you on a fast paced ride through Brighton's less glamorous side.
Although being a great thriller, you could find yourself laughing out loud at certain points, much to the amusement of those around you, if you wear earphones.
You could even find yourself praying that no harm comes to some of the characters. Very few books have managed that for me.
I have read Mark Dawson and the "John Milton" book series and loved it. Stephen Leather and the "Jack Nightingale" book series is also one of my favourites.
I'm not sure if I should pass judgement on this one yet, but the first audible offering in the series seems to be right up there....
Now on to book 3...
3 of 3 people found this review helpful