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Publisher's Summary

In the dark days of a Shetland winter, torrential rain triggers a landslide that crosses the main road and sweeps down to the sea.

At the burial of his old friend Magnus Tait, Jimmy Perez watches the flood of mud and water smash through a house in its path. Everyone thinks the home is uninhabited, but in the wreckage he finds the body of a dark-haired woman wearing a red silk dress. Perez soon becomes obsessed with tracing her identity and realizes he must find out who she was and how she died.

Cold Earth is the next audiobook in Ann Cleeves' beloved Shetland series, which is now a major success for the BBC.

©2016 Ann Cleeves (P)2017 Isis Publishing Ltd

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What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    264
  • 4 Stars
    168
  • 3 Stars
    35
  • 2 Stars
    8
  • 1 Stars
    4

Performance

  • 4.7 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    307
  • 4 Stars
    106
  • 3 Stars
    14
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    2

Story

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    228
  • 4 Stars
    157
  • 3 Stars
    38
  • 2 Stars
    6
  • 1 Stars
    3
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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Wonderful Return to Shetland

Ann Cleeves brooding detective Jimmy Perez is back with a new murder to solve. This story delves less into island life than some earlier books, but we get a glimpse into a bit of Jimmy's inner turmoil.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Unique Setting and Characters

This has become one of my favorite mystery series. Before discovering these stories on television and in books I knew nothing about Shetland. Now I look forward to every literary visit to this place.

The characters in a story must appeal to me if I am to enjoy their story. I like Jimmy Perez. He is complex. He is brave. He is smart. He is gentle and loving. He has experienced difficult times through this series of stories. He has learned from his experience and managed to heal and survive without turning bitter or angry.

My enjoyment of this book does not rest solely on the "puzzle" of the crime to be solved. The author creates a cast of characters that I care about in a place that is fascinating. That is enough.

Narrator Kenny Blyth is superb.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Ann Cleeves wonderful as always

What made the experience of listening to Cold Earth the most enjoyable?

Another fabulous chapter in the Shetland series

What other book might you compare Cold Earth to and why?

Ann's Vera series. She has a way with making the location an equal to her characters. She creates a mood theme as well as very good mystery.

Which character – as performed by Kenny Blyth – was your favorite?

Kenny Blyth is Shetland.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

No, just hope the next one will be in the near future.

Any additional comments?

I am not big on stars, commentary means more to me when I read reviews. If you like Ann Cleeves you will love this book. If you have not read her works start at the beginning if you can. Not sure how this would work as a stand alone, and the characters are not quite the same as the wonderful TV series.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
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Reader Makes the Story Come Alive

I really enjoyed the TV series because of the unique setting of The Shetland Islands.
This tale reveals the unique lives of those who make the islands their home. Kenny Blyth with his Scottish accent adds so much to the atmosphere. This is not a fast paced story but more an in-depth study of the characters, interesting people. I was hooked from the beginning when a house slides down a hill in the heavy rains during a funeral. There's an unidentified woman inside. The story develops from there as Inspector Perez searches beyond his own fantasies. Overall good book. Excellent reader.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Disappointing - end is a summary, not an ending

What disappointed you about Cold Earth?

The end, the last quarter or so, was so badly done - just rushed and summarized, like she couldn't be bothered to write it properly. None of the main story felt properly fleshed out - it was just hinted at and then rushed into a conclusion. Also, I have no respect for the technique of having an entire scene with one of the characters only being identified as "the killer." Not kosher. Also, no suspense leading up to the finish, just suddenly one of the main characters is doing battle with "the killer" but we're left in the dark as to where they are or who he/she is. That's not good writing.

What could Ann Cleeves have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Finished writing the last fourth of the damn book, instead of submitting her summary!

How could the performance have been better?

Ugh, this reader has a very nice voice, and it can be deep, but why does he go up a few octaves for Jimmy Perez's voice? It makes the detective, who is supposedly the dark dreamy pirate type, sound nasal-y and not masculine at all.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Disappointment. Total let down.

Any additional comments?

Guess she's done so many of these she's just phoning it in now. It's too bad, because when she's on, she's really on, and I do like the setting and her way of describing it, and some of the characters.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Another Fantastic Novel

This is another fantastic novel by Ann Cleeves which I found spellbinding to the end.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Disappointing

Not enough mystery, too much about Jimmy and Sandy's insecurities and love lives. Could have cut out much of that stuff and had a decent mystery. instead I spent most of the time wishing the story would move along.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
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damaged narration

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

The narration went 3/4 through the book and hit an error making it impossible to listen to the story on my device. I spent more than an hour with tech support to no avail. Was assured that they would escalate and in 3 or 4 days I would be able to hear the missing chapters. I skipped to the end and heard the resolution, but the middle of the book was missing. It can't possibly be a 4 or 5 star experience when the best parts are missing and support tells me I can wait until they resolve the issue!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Formulaic, Boring; Preposterous Ending

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

No, it was not. It wasted too much time with to-ing and fro-ing without much happening as the characters flitted about trying to get information tidbits. I kept waiting for something to happen.

Would you recommend Cold Earth to your friends? Why or why not?

No. While I love Ann Cleeves books, this one is not up to her best. It's hard to keep listening and to remember what happened before because it was so inconsequential.

Which character – as performed by Kenny Blyth – was your favorite?

Willow is a lovely character.

Could you see Cold Earth being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

Not really, and I don't know the names of enough young actors to suggest stars.

Any additional comments?

The ending is preposterous and unbelievable and we weren't given enough information to be prepared for it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • J. Moreno
  • Medford, OR United States
  • 07-27-17

Enjoyed it.

Lived the story and interaction with the main characters. I like the Jimmy/Will relationship arc.