A promise made to a dying man leads forensics ace Enzo Macleod (a Scot who's been teaching in France for many years) to the study—a place the man's heir has preserved for nearly 20 years. The dead man left several clues there designed to reveal his killer's identity to the man's son, but ironically the son died soon after the father.
So begins the fourth of the seven cold cases written up in a best-selling book by Parisian journalist Roger Raffin that Enzo rashly boasted he could solve (he's been successful with the first three).
The case takes Enzo to a tiny island off the coast of Brittany in France, where he must confront the hostility of locals who have no desire to see the infamous murder back in the headlines. An attractive widow, a man charged but acquitted of the murder—but still the viable suspect, a crime scene frozen in time, a dangerous hell hole by the cliffs, and a collection of impenetrable messages make this one of Enzo's most difficult cases.
©2010 Peter May (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Some cases are better left swept under the rug…
“Excellent….With its intricate plot, compelling characters, and bombshell denouement, this unsettling Enzo Files installment is a must-read.” (Publishers Weekly, starred review)
“The author of the much acclaimed China Thrillers surpasses himself here in misdirection, placing clues in plain sight and leaving the reader anticipating the fifth entry in this outstanding series.” (Library Journal)
Photographer, nature & water geek, music lover, book fiend.
I liked the series opener to search for the next two, which Audible doesn't carry. Enzo and his cast of characters are all complex and interesting, as is the storyline. But...I'll never understand authors who create these character situations such as the one between Charlotte & Enzo. It's pretty ridiculous. She's this psychiatrist who clearly needs to be in therapy, & Enzo continues to speak with her after being repeatedly blown off, cast off, & so obviously set up. What's more, the lack of resolution (or even a plausible response from an otherwise intelligent man), grates and rings false. An obvious tool. Still, I enjoy the series and will read and listen to May's other books. Just feel a bit annoyed by Charlotte & also Enzo's lack of self respect when it comes to her. And the fact that May garnered this kind of reaction is evidence of how much interest the books have woven.
Tell us about yourself!
Unlike previous installments, Enzo is on his own to solve this next cold case from Raffin’s book. He goes to an isolated community that is not pleased with their notorious murder being rehashed. In fact, the inhabitants “know” who killed the victim. Unfortunately he was tried and acquitted long ago. The crime scene has not been disturbed for 20 years. The clues, left by the victim for his son (that died before he saw them), are yet to be decoded. Enzo must make sense of the clues, untangle changed identities, endure the uncooperative locals, and juggle a new female attraction with the reappearance of Charlotte. He does succeed in finding the true killer, but not before another local is murdered.
This was an enjoyable listen. It’s somewhat linear and predictable, but it did hold my interest until the end.
Simon Vance is always an excellent narrator.
Yes, at some time in the future.
Peter May writes a wonderful, atmospheric mystery. This is the fourth installment of The Enzo Files and though it not necessary to read them in order, there are details that will have more meaning if done so.
Several and to describe them would give away too much.
Peter May has become one of my favorite mystery writers and with Simon Vance narrating, not to be beat...would give more stars if possible!
Rating scale: 5=Loved it, 4=Liked it, 3=Ok, 2=Disappointed, 1=Hated it. I look for well developed characters, compelling stories.
This was another reliable entry in the Enzo series. The mystery is interesting and well strung together. I found the handling of the clues creative and intriguing, allowing me to play along with Enzo’s problem solving process, and even though I had figured out who-dunnit, I didn't mind because the scavenger hunt to get there was worth the trip. Enzo remains an engaging and full-blooded character, in this outing working without the entourage of his daughters and their boyfriends, but that was ok. I enjoyed the atmospheric Breton island location and the people he met there. My only complaint is the subplot involving sometime love interest, Charlotte, who was uncharacteristically surly, leaving a relationship cliffhanger that left a bad taste in my mouth. I’m sure there will be a resolution of sorts in future volumes, but I just didn't like the way this one faded out, but not so much as to lose the recommendation.
It is in the top 15% of books that I have listened to.
It is not a cliff hanger but the plot moves and you do want to keep listening!
All of his performances that I have listened to are excellent. He is one of my favorite readers.
I would have if I could have.
I love the way Peter May combines mysteries with his love and knowledge of France. It is the next best thing to being there!
I really enjoy the characters in this series and all the books read well. But this one, Freeze Frame, is the most beautiful. The story captured my attention with some little clues in the beginning that fooled me into thinking I knew what was going to happen. Surprise! I was wrong. But best of all is May's ability to put me on that gorgeous island. I could visualize the ocean and villages and the houses. It makes me really want to visit there.
Simon Vance does he usual great job on the reading.
This is the third Enzo Files book I have listened to, and I wish more were available on Audible. The narration of Simon Vance was, as usual, amazing and versatile.
Say something about yourself!
I listened to Freeze Frame about a week after listening to Dry Bones, the first in the Enzo Macleod series. I liked Freeze Frame better. Dry Bones had a lot of frantic energy. Enzo didn't seem as scattered in Freeze Frame and as a reader it was easier to see his mental abilities working to solve the murder of Adam Killian.
I don't care for the character of Charlotte. In this book she was a distraction and put Enzo in a no win situation. The author seems to be struggling with how to write the intimate aspects of Enzo's life. He was married and had a 7 year old child that he left. He moved to Paris and found the "love of his life" who died in childbirth. In Dry Bones, Enzo is in bed with Charlotte a day after meeting her. Charlotte who may or may not still be in a relationship with Roger Raffin, the journalist. Next enter Nicole, the student that Enzo forgot he had promised to send a recommendation for a Summer job for. All Enzo remembers or notices about Nicole is her "rather remarkable melon size" breasts. In Freeze Frame it is 3 maybe 4 days before Enzo is in bed with Jane Killian. Now that I look back over this, perhaps I don't like Enzo either. I guess it is the story that I like.
Anyone who says they have only one life to live must not know how to read a book. ~ Author Unknown
There is no light in this book. No redeeming instance that makes you want to read further. Yes murder is bleak but this is bleak topped with bleak and more bleak. The actions of his girlfriend downright evil. I have enjoyed Peter May in the past but I think I'm through.
This book was a bit plodding compared to previous ones especially since a good chunk of the story is spent chasing an obvious red herring. Enzo's willingness to jump right into a trap w/ no preparation is also getting old. Then there is the sub plot w/ Charlotte - aggravating and perplexing with her sudden unexpected coldness/nastiness toward Enzo.
"In sanguinem veritas"
Enzo Macleod is back to breaking down clues frozen in time a promise made over the telephone.
Peter mays fascination with islands is explored on an island in Brittany, France.
Where the locals and and the past hide a secret that is part of historical events and chance encounters, that have deadly consequences for the few that know or figure it out.
A deduction and puzzles story, that takes Enzo to the edge, and a widow that leads him astray as expected, poor Enzo he can not help it, but his philandering is catching up to him.
Good entertainment even if you just let him figure out the puzzles, while you enjoy the story.
My time was not well spent reading this book, I am sorry to say.
Enzo is described as a forensics expert and he is called in to see if he can solve a 20 year-old murder where clues were left by the victim in his study. It did seem to me that Enzo, the forensics expert, would have concentrated on the evidence in the room to see if he could unlock its secrets. Instead, he spent a very little time with the evidence and then went wandering around the place talking to people who were around at the time and not getting very far. It was all very unfocussed and unsatisfactory. I suppose if he had looked at the evidence and dug around for the story behind it immediately it would have made for a very short book as it took very little thinking to solve the case when he eventually put his mind to it.
Unfortunately, the first two thirds of the book consist largely of Enzo's love life. It's fine to have character development in a series of novels featuring one main protagonist but it seemed to me that the solving of the mystery came off second best in this novel.
I cannot imagine trying another in this series. However, I have also listened to Peter May's Blackhouse. I thought that was excellent and that was one of the reasons I chose Freeze Frame but it is not to my taste at all.
Simon Vance has a lovely speaking voice and provides convincing accents and voices for both male and female characters. His delivery when speaking as the narrator rather than as a character is a bit mannered but not enough to spoil it.
It was just about worth three stars but overall I was disappointed. On the other hand, I now know that the Enzo books are not for me.
It may be a small point but I found myself distracted by some of the words which sounded American and I was left wondering whether the book had a US editor. It became intrusive so I wrote some of them down so that I could try to ignore them when they came up again. I noted Fall (not Autumn), toward (not towards), drapes (not curtains), even although (even though), car hood (not bonnet), sidewalk (not pavement) and there may be more.
Perhaps these words are commonly used in Scotland if not in England but it was disconcerting.
Held my interest from the start. Narration creating a dark and moody atmosphere for the listener.
"Decent story line not sure about characters"
This is a good peter may book ...but I did not like the narrator and can't decide if that is why I did not warn to the characters. My first Enzo book after listening to and loving the Scottish books and the China series but I am unlikely to listen to anymore.
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