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Alison S. Coad
4.0 out of 5 starsMany Twists and Turns
Reviewed in the United States on March 20, 2016
A mild-mannered accountant is brutally executed as Peter Robinson’s "Final Account" begins, and Detective Inspector Alan Banks is at a loss to understand why someone felt he deserved such a gruesome death. Before too long, though, he finds that there is much more to the man than meets the eye, and following the clues leads him far afield from Yorkshire, ultimately stretching to the Caribbean and Southern Europe too…. I only just finished the previous novel in the Alan Banks series a few days prior to starting this one, but I’m enjoying them so much, and there are so many titles to catch up with, that it doesn’t feel like I’m “binge-reading” at all. Inspector Banks is as complex a character as one could want, and this novel emphasizes his love of classical music in a way that both adds more dimension to his character and some important plot points as well - though now I feel that my classical music education is sorely lacking, particularly in terms of the more modern composers referenced in this story. So, a mystery to solve, and some music to find too, what more could one want? Recommended!
4.0 out of 5 starsBoring Accountant Gets in Over His Head
Reviewed in the United States on December 15, 2012
In this mystery, a plain old accountant is found executed on his estate in a gruesome manner with his head blown off, while his daughter and wife are bound in ropes in the house. There seems to be no reason for such a boring man to have been executed in such a manner, but as Alan Banks and his crew start to delve farther into his life, they find out that the man has been leading a double-life, hiding from not just his family, but also absconding money from a petty tyrant who rules a small island in the Caribbean. All of this stuff, put him in danger from a variety of people who Banks has to chase down in order to find out who is guilty for his murder. In the meantime, a woman who was innocently involved with the accountant as a friend is aggressively hurt, because the people who killed the accountant think she knows or has something they want...and Banks has to figure out what that is before anyone else gets hurt.
I enjoy the Banks mysteries...he is a troubled soul, obviously having problems with his marriage by this time, but highly intelligent, with great taste in music, and in many ways desperately trying to keep his head above water in every part of his life. I often don't approve of his choices...they wouldn't be mine. But he is an interesting character, and very well fleshed out. Occasionally Robinson's mysteries get bogged down, and you need to hang in there til the thread gets going again, but they are usually worth the read.
5.0 out of 5 starsI couldn't put down this Inspector Banks page-turner
Reviewed in the United States on March 14, 2011
I have become addicted to Peter Robinson's excellent series of Inspector Banks novels. In Banks himself, Robinson has created a fascinating, likable but flawed, well-rounded detective, who I find to be just as engaging as Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch (I started reading the Banks books when I ran out of Bosch books, and I find the Banks series to be just as enjoyable as the Bosch series). The supporting cast is also extremely well characterized, both the regulars and the one-offs, from the young and talented Detective Constable, the Neanderthal and sexist Detective Sergeant, to the sleazy purveyor of under-the-counter pornography who is persuaded to help with the investigation through not exactly by-the-book techniques.
This book has a compelling and ingenious plot, with several twists and turns, and one or two major surprises. The book wasted no time in starting the action, from the very first sentence:
"The uniformed constable lifted the tape and waved Detective Chief Inspector Banks through the gate at two forty-seven in the morning".
Banks and his colleagues are summoned to a farm to investigate the execution-style murder of an accountant. The victim at first appears to be a classic accountant type, gray and boring, but the investigation uncovers a whole other side to him. The pacing is perfect, and held my interest so much that I read this book in 2 days, which seems to be a pattern for me with the Banks books.
I enjoy the Yorkshire setting of these books; it is a pleasant change from familiar locations like Los Angeles. Robinson makes you feel as though you are there, with his depictions of the scenery , the places, the pubs, the people, and snippets like "'Bloody hell, Alan', he said by way of greeting, 'tha looks like Columbo!'"
I have not been reading the Banks novels in the correct order; I started our by reading the most highly reviewed books in the series (like "In a Dry Season"), but this has not really been a problem for me. Robinson does not assume any previous knowledge on the part of the reader.
I am happy that there are still several books in this series that I have not yet read. Now, on to the next one.......
5.0 out of 5 starsChief Inspector Banks series never disappoints
Reviewed in the United States on November 16, 2020
Peter Robinson's Chief Inspector Banks series never fails to please. Robinson has created an indelible and very likable protagonist in Banks and the stories have grown more interesting as the series goes along. I urge you not to skip around, rather read the series in order to avoid spoilers. There are plot elements / developments which are meant to be revealed in chronological order.
Excellent author. Read his 15th book or so. It was my 1st of his. Liked it so much I have gone back and purchased his first 14. All are paperbacks purchased on Amazon from about 10 different sellers. There are multiple ones to pick from. Most are in very good condition and the worst has a little yellowing on some pages from age. All are very readable. Price is affordable.
I'm a serious fan of Inspector Banks. This is the best one to date. Have not read the books in order, but am trying to fill in early gaps. The plot is intriguing and captivating from beginning to end. The ending is perfect. "Well done" Peter Robinson.
I love Robinson's books. This is the sixth I've read... correction: I've not been able to put down. His characters are do well drawn and unpredictable. This one goes back in time to when Banks was still married and only toying with the idea of infidelity. Once again, just when you think you have the ending foreseen, Robinson turns the tables and surprises the reader. No disappointing in this author's portraying of evil and human consequences of action... gripping to the end.
Like others, I bought this erroneously thinking it was a new book, not a US re-issue under a different title. In fact, reading the Amazon reviews (too late) I realise it is worse than that – it is a re-issue of a re-issue, so the same problems have now arisen on two occasions. The confusion arises because of the headlined publication date. My mistake as if I had been more careful I would have realised but, still, it seems a shoddy way to treat customers.
Eagerly awaited this book, only to discover that it is one of his earlier books - 'Dry bones that dream' republished under another name. If there isnt a law against this there certainly should be. What makes a talented and respected author like Peter Robinson resort to such shady practices as this Dont Buy It .
Final Account: An Inspector Banks Novel (Inspector Banks Novels)
I have to say I was conned! I was expecting a new novel, the title suggesting to me that it might be the last in the series (although I must say I was surprised that it had gone straight into paperback). The novel was originally entitled "Dry Bones that Dream", published in the UK in 1994! Being a huge Banks fan I had already read it. This new edition has been published in the USA and is obviously aimed at the US market. British readers beware! On the positive side, still a great story if you haven't read it.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I am working my way through Robinson in chronological order from a slightly disappointing Gallows View and getting used to his form of narrative with so much time spent inside Banks head. One problem I have probably created for myself over time reading these type of books is to wonder why each character exists or querying whether I am being sold a pup in a particular action. I try NOT to follow the clues in detective novels and leave that to the summary. However, I did fasten onto a theory early in this story and read through the book seeing this refuted extensively. Amused at the end to realise I had been duped. Added to the enjoyment. Already lined up 10 to 16 on Kindle and pre-ordered 26 because his narrative is so enjoyable as well as the story lines.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 19, 2014
Keith Rothwell, a local accountant, is murdered in what looks like a contract killing of some sort. Banks is puzzled by the behaviour of his widow and teenage daughter and he feels something doesn't ring quite true about their reactions. As Banks and his team investigate Rothwell's private and business lives it soon becomes clear that what appears on the surface is definitely not what is going on underneath.
Once again Banks crosses swords with Burgess - his former colleague from the Met - who is now involved in investigating international and political skulduggery. Just why are two men apparently following Banks around as he interviews people connected with the dead man? Which side are they on? I found this quite a dark crime novel which says a lot about human nature and the way we seek to hide things from ourselves and from others, even those close to us.
I definitely didn't foresee the ending if this story and was very surprised by it though it does fit with the clues which are there if you happen to notice them. This is another excellent read in this very well written and absorbing series.