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1.0 out of 5 starsMy first by this author and there won't be a second
Reviewed in the United States on May 6, 2017
This novel was abysmal. I read a lot of crime thrillers, but there was nothing thrilling about this. The characters were so banal and the crime was unbelievable. The suspects owned up at the drop of a hat and a lot of detail added in was just for padding. The Scottish vernacular grated on my nerves and added nothing at all to the story. I had the impression that the detective worked on his own as there was no coherence between members of his team. In fact I dont think he has any idea how investigations go. Total waste of time. i cannot think of one redeeming feature.
Although the characters seemed a little one-dimensional and some of the plot points just a bit forced, I still greatly enjoyed this book. It moved a tad slowly, but that's simply the way police procedural novels are, no matter what country they are set in. Munro's scathing remarks were so hilarious at times that it relieved any tedium. I did have a bit of trouble understanding why the two Italian nationals would be speaking in Scottish dialect, no matter how long they'd lived in the country. I truly liked the surprising twists at both the end of the novel and the epilogue. All said and done, a nice light read and an interesting mystery.
5.0 out of 5 starsPete Brassett canna write a bad novel!
Reviewed in the United States on March 8, 2020
I have one favorite genre, the Police procedural investigative niche. My tastes in this area run to the British policing, as it has such interesting differences from the American. This fine book has action, adventure, love, murder and more twists and turns than a mountain road. A pisser to the very end! Excellent!
I couldn't possibly begin to explain why these books amuse me ... Perhaps because they are such quick and easy reads, the flawed characters, DCI Munro's sarcasm and sense of humor, trying to figure out why Munro thinks Sargeant West has the makings of a great detective? I can tell you that it is not because they are brilliant writing. Yet I've read all four of them in succession; each immediately following the last. Call me crazy.
Mr. Brassett's latest offering in Inspector Munro/West series is a fun/quick read. The curmudgeonly Munro is pretty much the only multi-dimensional character in the novel. Since "Duplicity" is essentially a procedural, it is a bit disappointing that the reader has to accept a lot of illogical plot points in order to enjoy the read.
5.0 out of 5 starsPete Brassett has done it again! Munro Rules!
Reviewed in the United States on July 15, 2019
Again we see Inspector Munro who has been trying to fit into the retired life and never seems to make it. He keeps getting called back in to work with one of his proteges DS West. They sometimes seem like rivals but most of the time seem more like father and daughter. He seems always to be teaching her the ropes. Love the back and forth between Munro, West, DC Dougall McCrae, DCI George Elliot. Has all I enjoy Scottish landscape, Mystery and great characters. I hope this series with Munro continues for a long time
As a reader of many writers, from different countries and backgrounds, I really enjoyed this writers insights into Scotland’s police investigations. The verbal differences in conversations with possible suspects and between the police investigators themselves was very interesting. I have found that each English speaking country has their own slang and terms that can have different meanings, than what a reader would question it to be. Overall a really good police investigation story.
A very intriguing story. Business partners, their spouses and employees all mixed up together. I thought the story and it's outcome was brilliant. Missing persons, murders, drugs and druggies...there all there! Munro (semi retired) and 'Charlie' West have to unravel dozens of leads, aided by their friends and colleague, a very likeable and clever DC 'Dougal'. A very shrewd DI Munro mentors Charlie West giving her the lead, helping and instructing her. Running through the story was a humour between the three detectives which had me laughing as tried to get through the maze of evidence presented to the reader. Finally a good result with an unexpected - in a way - ending. I loved the story. Pete Brassett is a brilliant writer and I look forward to reading more !!!
4.0 out of 5 starsA good book for a train journey. Relaxing read.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 12, 2017
A convoluted murder mystery complicated by a cast of characters all of who have secrets to protect and constantly lie to or about each other when questioned. The case is investigated by an under resourced local police team headed by an old fashioned semi retired police officer who is passing through but stays on to help out an old mate. Despite the heavy issues of drug dealing and extortion much of the police banter is light with many a wise-crack added for good measure along with a rising body count and hidden levels of criminality in a small Scottish community that appears almost idyllic to the casual observer.
This is a light hearted whodunnit. Easy to read. I'd look up another in the series when I wanted an easy distraction. I liked the characters. The twisting storyline kept me interested. There was a tendency to begin chapters with a rambling sentence. Why? There was an irritating inability to get the timing right with concurrent events eg people drink coffee/ eat a sandwich/make three phone calls in the time it takes to say two sentences. Otherwise the writing is good, if over flippant.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 16, 2020
I read and reviewed 'Avarice' a year ago. I could use the same words to describe this book. The Scottish vernacular grates after the first few chapters, but the story line is good and the lead characters are a strong pairing. Will I wait twelve months before diving into another book in the series? Possibly. Not because it's not a decent series, but there are so many others in the same genre on my TBR list that I want to get to.
I love taking a chance on a new author, well at least to me. Munro reminds me of a Scot I knew years ago. Like a dog with a bone he was when it came to thieves and fraudsters. So thanks again for another good read. Now on to the next one. Oh sometimes life is hard, then I realise just what retirement is for. Thanks again. xx