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Publisher's Summary

For rookie detective constable Fiona Griffiths, her first major investigation promises to be a tough initiation. A young woman and her six-year-old daughter have been found brutally murdered in a squalid flat, the single clue a platinum credit card belonging to a millionaire businessman who died in a plane crash six months before. For her fellow cops, it's just another case of a low-rent prostitute meeting the wrong kind of client and coming to a nasty end, but Fiona is convinced that the tragic lives and cruel deaths of this mother and daughter are part of a deeper, darker mystery.

Fiona, however, has secrets of her own. She is still recovering from a crushing psychological breakdown, and the feelings that haunt her are constantly threatening to undermine the mask of normality she has learned to wear. As she begins to piece together a bizarre and terrifying conspiracy, Fiona finds that what makes her vulnerable also gives her a unique insight into the secrets of the dead, and in solving the murders she can begin to start solving the riddles of her own past.

Read by Siriol Jenkins: Siriol was a member of the BBC Radio Drama Company and has appeared extensively on BBC Radio 4. She has won several awards including the Radio Times Drama and Comedy Award for Best New Actress for her role as Judy in Unreasonable Behaviour, a Bronze Sony Award for BBC Radio Wales' Comedy Series The Ll Files, and a Mind Media Award for Sunbathing in the Rain by Gwyneth Lewis. She has also read a variety of stories and books for radio including Jon-Jin by Rose Tremain and Nia Wyn's Blue Sky July. She has narrated many documentaries for both BBC and ITV including A Garden in Snowdonia and Bellamy's African Dream. She lives in South Wales with her husband and two children.

©2012 Harry Bingham (P)2012 Isis Publishing

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Story
  • Colette
  • 12-18-14

Loved this one

Would you listen to Talking to the Dead again? Why?

Yes, eventually. Fiona is an interesting character and I've enjoyed getting to know her,

What did you like best about this story?

It's a good solid crime story which is well paced and kept me interested right up to the end. I really like the main character, Fiona Griffiths, and wanted to know how she was going to deal with what was going on around her.

What does Siriol Jenkins bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

She reads it very well. I wouldn't have had a clue how to pronounce all the Welsh place names.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes, I raced through it, listening to it at every possible opportunity.

Any additional comments?

I downloaded book 2 in the series as soon as I finished.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Franziska
  • 10-09-13

Great Read/ Hear

What was one of the most memorable moments of Talking to the Dead?

Love the Figthing and the 'Material Arts' Teacher

Any additional comments?

The story is well paced and goes deeply into the emotions or non emotions of our fascinating detective.
A good Krimi with some interesting twists. Sensitive Storytelling

I needed to get used to the Storyteller (female) but now I have warmed up to the voice.
Still -1 Star because of the 'Geting used to Period' and not beeing able to Jumpstart instantly with her

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Anne
  • 02-21-17

Too much tedious detail

when i read the overview for this novel I was really looking forward to listening to it. I was very disappointed by the amount of focus placed on the detectives mental health and not the crime. Not sure if I will listen to others in the series. Great narrator.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • emma
  • 06-09-16

A hidden gem!

Siriol Jenkins' wonderful narration is the real star of this audiobook. Her beautiful, lilting Welsh accent guides the listener through gruesome crime scenes and police procedure with a quiet detachment that's 100% in tune with the character of DC Fiona Griffiths.

This series was recommended, and I was hooked early on. It's pretty popular these days to write a detective with peculiar habits and a mysterious past, and this follows that trend. Like most fictional detectives, she doesn't follow the rules, and there are many times when you can't believe she hasn't been fired by now. And, of course, frequent wild hunches turn out to be true. But I liked the character and the book enough that I didn't mind at all.

The well-crafted writing focuses more on character than crime; in some ways, it's more like a regular novel than a thriller. It's a really good listen, and I'm surprised this series isn't better known.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Rachel
  • 02-18-18

Fiona Griffiths

Love you. What a great character. Fabulous reading. Unusual but very compelling story. Highly recommended.

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  • a f paterson
  • 11-04-17

Far fetched

Little research into police work - they would not be allowed to do this far fetched stuff!

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  • sandra streeting
  • 10-29-17

A very original story of a young detective with a high intellect who is coming to terms with a serious illness.

Well written book describing the emotional problems of trying to be normal whilst feeling very abnormal and attempting to work in a stressful job. The young detective is brave, strong and rebellious and you quickly find yourself willing her to succeed.

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  • Michael
  • 08-19-17

Unbelievable - not in a good way

What would have made Talking to the Dead better?

Plausibility

Has Talking to the Dead put you off other books in this genre?

Yes

What does Siriol Jenkins bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

Very good on welsh voices and names

What character would you cut from Talking to the Dead?

Fiona!

Any additional comments?

This book had an apparent originality in the initial quirky, pacy narration by the central character, Fiona, that did hook me in for a while but I found my frustrations and interest and sympathy towards her began to wane and I carried on listening to this book simply to tie up the traditional loose ends although I finally ended up wishing I hadn’t bothererd. I think the narrator of the book, Siriol Jenkins does a great job but as others have mentioned, the uneven pace becomes quite a problem, it really drags in places (the morgue scene is so drawn out) and there is a real conflict between the central character’s personality and her being a police officer. She is so unconventional and so ‘off the grid’ that we the reader have to suspend a lot of disbelief that it all becomes so implausible and so ridiculous! It’s probably two books in one and neither works for me.

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  • JJ Rule
  • 04-19-17

Very Boring and tedious

Would you try another book written by Harry Bingham or narrated by Siriol Jenkins?

No, the book was boring and the narrator's voice did nothing for me to want to listen further.

What could Harry Bingham have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Continue with the original story around young April and her mother instead of weighing on Fiona's 'poor' life, of which I am still trying to figure out No continuation of the story in any kind of format
Different people pop up from time to time, with no clue as to where they originally fitted in to her life. I thought it was a detective/crime thriller but turned out to be soppy with no real handle.
I am sorry, it is rude not to complete a book once started, but I had too call it a day by chapter 24.

How could the performance have been better?

As mentioned above, and with a more enigmatic narrator

You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?

Not really.

Any additional comments?

Ill be returning this book.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Ann D
  • 06-03-16

Strange!

Any additional comments?

This book had something that engaged me for some time, but I ran out of interest a couple of hours before the end and will return it. Fiona, the DC, is a pretty disturbed individual. That itself wouldn't be a problem, but I repeatedly had to suspend disbelief (not ideal in modern crime fiction) as she did all sorts of unlikely things that would have had her quickly out of the Police force. Yes, she is often told off by her superior, but that she repeatedly got away with doing her own thing without him, or indeed anyone in her department even noticing, was, well a bit ridiculous. In addition to that, the story drags.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Lisa
  • 07-07-16

great book

loved it, great narrator, hooked on Harry Bingham now. can't wait to read another book