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Publisher's Summary

After an explosive case that forced Tony Hill and Carol Jordan to reassess everything they thought they knew about right and wrong, both are dealing with the fallout in their own separate ways. While Tony must pay the price for his actions, Carol is conducting investigations into suspected miscarriages of justice. But when a shocking discovery is made on a construction site, and skeletal remains are found to belong to a killer who is supposedly alive and in prison, suddenly Tony and Carol are brought into each other's orbit once again.... 

©2019 Val McDermid (P)2019 W. F. Howes Ltd

Critic Reviews

"McDermid remains unrivalled...brilliant.” (Observer)

What listeners say about How the Dead Speak

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Dull.

If this was the first McDermid book I had ever read perhaps I would have a different opinion. However, it wasn’t and I haven’t. The appeal of many McDermid books are Tony and Carol. And both of them are pretty well bit part players throughout. The things Tony always did well never appeared. The references to Tony’s book at the start of every chapter were pointless. The plot was over complex and fizzled out. No excitement. No would he or wouldn’t he. No. It was dull. The narrator was excellent. He made the characters different. He was the best feature. Sorry to rubbish it but compared to the Tony Hill personality made famous in Wire in the Blood this book was a poor relative.

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Fine.

Sorry to say it but after more than a decade of just being ok with this particular voice actor, I have to say it. Enough. Sometimes you just have to acknowledge that age is causing havoc with tone, timbre and emphasis. The characterizations were so difficult to differentiate and all people universally sounded not young. It’s a shame to spoil an ok listen.

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I have to say I struggled with this one

I have to say I struggled with this one. I found the story disjointed and kept losing interest. It was like a warm up movie while you're waiting for the feature film. Saul Reichlin's narration really helped me through it. Lower half of the second tier in my library for this one.

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  • Anita Donley
  • 09-27-19

Narrator’s delivery is distracting.

Poor choice of narrator for a novel with predominantly female main characters and occasional regional accents. Lovely tone and pitch but staccato delivery with tiny pauses in the middle of sentences.

Regional accents were really poor and varied across Irish, Scottish and Northern for the same character in a few sentences.

21 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-25-19

poor reader

the narrator was very poor.often difficult to determine which character was speaking ,.. almost gave up listening. Val Macdermid deserves better

14 people found this helpful

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  • Stephen
  • 09-19-19

Irritating

I challenge you not to be irritated by the constant 'exerts' for 'Reading Crimes' by Dr Tony Hills. Really grating.

13 people found this helpful

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  • Susanne
  • 11-27-19

I feel disapointed

I was looking forward to this one, having listened to all the previous Hill/Jordan books. But I am left with the feeling that I have been listening to a bunch of short stories with no real substance. I guess the series has come to an end.

11 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • D Wyatt
  • 01-11-20

Not up to the normal standard

I have read or listened to every book in this series and loved them but this one was very flat. I think the series has run its course unfortunately

8 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 09-18-19

Found the narrator's a little annoying

Enjoyed listening to prior bks more, has narrator changed? I may now prefer Karen Pirie!

8 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • archiejsa1
  • 11-22-19

Didn’t take off

I was excited to download this as I’m an avid fan of the Tony Hill series. I was however, disappointed with the lack of pace and depth of story. I think McDermid has churned this one out just to keep the coffers ticking over. Nowhere near her usual nail biting page turners of earlier on in the series.

5 people found this helpful

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  • jken
  • 11-17-19

OK, not as good as I hoped

Hate the reader but tolerate him because I enjoy the Jordan/Hill stories. Hope for more.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Mr SM McGann
  • 02-16-20

Awful!! Don’t waste your time or money!

Flipping heck, that was really hard work!
Too many faucets to the overall plot.
Far too many characters that were immaterial to the main story.
Kept forgetting who was who!
Really hard work and awful ending. Too many loose ends and people getting away with mass murder!
Ridiculous!

4 people found this helpful

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  • Jean
  • 08-23-19

Different

From the usual Carol/Tony formula. I hope Val is going to write an epilogue to this series. It would be nice to have a conclusion to their relationship; and see Paula have her own elite team.
But the usual excellent story from Val.

9 people found this helpful

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  • adam neylon
  • 09-04-19

boring and barely there villain

Not up to normally high standard. The drama was there and good but the story just ambles along without the presence of an interesting or even explored bad guy.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Ian
  • 10-02-19

A weak plot badly read

We know who did it from the beginning. The characters did not develop. This was not helped by the stilted reading. At least I lasted to the end

1 person found this helpful

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  • Tony
  • 09-23-19

Right book,wrong narrator!

Val McDermid is an excellent author and Carol Jordan and Tony Hill are compelling characters.Unfortunately Saul Reichlin,who narrates the book is completely wrong for it.He has a very affected way of speaking,his accents are unconvincing and he turns Carol and Tony into caricatures.Hard to listen to.Very disappointing.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Bonita N. Jones
  • 09-02-19

Another cracker from Val

I just loved that nothing has to end. Hoping for a spin off of Paula McIntrye stories, this isn't the last, I hope of Tony and Carol. Great story Val McDermid

1 person found this helpful

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  • Kerrie-Anne
  • 10-06-20

Yes Val, yes.

If you love crime writing the only bad thing about this series is the wait

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 04-03-20

Not up to the usual high standard

Val McDermid seems to have lost her spark in the Tony Hill series. The first books were excellent - so gripping you couldn't put them down - but the last two have been very disappointing. This latest book reaches a new low. The serial killer was almost an afterthought, a subplot to the boring main story about Tony's and Carol's inner demons. I'm sad to say this but I don't think I'll bother with the next installment if there is one.

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  • Kevin
  • 10-05-19

Thank you Cal and,Saul

Yay! Tony Hill and Carol Jordan book 11. I almost missed it since Audible failed to add tagging to the series. It's brilliant of course as you'd expect. Angle who has been through the first 10 books like me (and I don't know why you wouldn't) will be very happy indeed to see an 11th. Thanks Val and also great work again Saul.