This was not a great book to listen to on audio. Although the accents were enjoyable, the novel itself is rather slow moving and there is not a lot of characterization early on in the novel which made it a challenge to get the characters clear in your mind.
I found the book merely to be a spin-off of the traditional Sherlock Holmes tales. Grecian was given an inch of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and made it into The Yard. I did not find anything original in Grecian's approach or his story line. If the goal was simply to create a tale modeled after a master, then he did that.
The narrator was fine.
With the television series Elementary, I definitely could see the novel made into an episode or two.
The plot had just enough suspense - definately not over the top as is so often the case.
I've listened to 10s of books. But it was Toby Leonard Moore's performance that caused me to write this review. He was the best narrator I've heard. I would buy a book based on his narration alone.
I found that I fell in love with the characters. The intertwining storylines were interesting, and there were a few genuine surprises. I listen to my books on my 40 minute commute, and there were times I was a little late in because I had to sit in the parking lot to hear how the scene turned out! I also love historical fiction, so this little peek into the early days of Scotland Yard was most enjoyable.
I found I needed a little break here and there, mostly due to the somewhat repetitive nature of "let's explain how thumbprints work to everyone all over again" - but it was a necessary evil, I think.
I read on Goodreads that this is book one of a planned series. Hooray! I can't wait for the rest - I want to spend more time in this world.
Liked premise, London murder squad, after Jack the Ripper. But way too many characters, murderers, methods, and motives. Jumps between plots were awkward! Would try a later one, only if it reviewed well.
While thoughts exist, words are alive and literature becomes an escape, not from, but into living. Cyril Connolly, The Unquiet Grave
crafty, disturbing, exciting
The best thing I like about "The Yard" is how utterly unpredictable it is. I gave up trying to figure things out pretty early on, because nothing I thought would happen happened.
Toby Leonard Moore does great accents, giving each character a little something different.
Not in the beginning, but as the story began to unfold there were moments where I would stay in my car long after I had arrived at work to finish listening to the more exciting parts of the story.
This is really not a mystery. We know the murderer early on. The book is more about how long it takes the detectives to figure it out. The book introduces to three main characters who will probably appear in later books if this series continues. The characters are Insp. Day, Const. Hammersmith and Dr. Kingsley. Several interludes in the book give us the background of these characters.
The portrayal of Victorian England is rather haphazard. The conversations are full of 20th century slang, and the author seems to feel that decribing the scene is talking about Hansom Cabs and the smell. I honestly did not get a real feel for the period and I suspect the author doesn't understand it either. Whatever you may think of Anne Perry she certainly gets the period right and you feel as if you are in that period. This is not the case with this book.
The narrator is not a big help either. He is no Simon Prebble and his effort at unique voices falls flat at times. For me he made Dr. Kingsley sound like a twit. Although mostly he does an adequate but not an outstanding job.
The emphasis in this book is on the effort the detectives go through in tracking down a murderer who is right under their nose and how many clues they miss. Yet it is not a police procedural in the true sense of the word.
You make like the book as it tries to create a picture of the early Scotland Yard which seems reasonably accurate. However, I am not sure the detectives are typical of the Yard of that period.
Ths author could use a better editor. In places ths book just goes on way too long and a good editor would have helped enormously. For such a thin story, it is way too long.
Say something about yourself!
I really enjoyed this book with its well-written characters, glimpse into the beginnings of forensic science, interesting time period, and very entertaining story. The main characters were extremely likeable and unique. I haven't read or heard anything quite like this. It was a bit unnecessarily graphic at times. I would love to see a sequel.
Interesting, Intriguing, Enjoyable
Any Sherlock Holmes book, even if it differs in a positive way. There's no one uberhuman, but several characters who all bring their own thing to the story.
Mr Moore brings the characters to life. Plain and simple.
I no longer live in Worcester. I now live in Brooklyn, NY.
Very British, very slow at first. Stick with it....it is worth it! It is amazing how all the threads are woven together.......intriguing plot. I have been welded to my ear buds for the last 6 hours. The narrator was just right.
It's hard to believe this is a first novel! The story starts fast and doesn't slow down. It's a "mystery" true to the Victorian Scotland Yard genre, but it keeps you on the edge of your seat from start to finish. That's pretty amazing since the reader knows "who done it" pretty much from the beginning. Usually a listener only while driving, I did more gardening and cooking just so that I would have a good excuse to strap on my iPhone and keep listening. Some reviewers complained of the slow reading by the narrator. I think that his performance was just fine! With the fast pace of the action, had he also rushed his reading, or been overly dramatic, I would have been worn out! I hope this isn't Alex Grecian's last tale.