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Publisher's Summary

Starting a new life in Snowdonia was always DI Ruth Hunter's dream...until a twisted killer turned it into her worst nightmare.

Detective Inspector Ruth Hunter lives with the pain of her partner’s mysterious and unsolved disappearance. About to hit 50, the veteran police officer trades in the crime-ridden streets of London for a more peaceful life in rural North Wales.

But Ruth has barely settled into her new position in North Wales Police, when the body of a brutally murdered woman is discovered...with strange symbols carved into her skin. Teaming up with an obstinate deputy, Ruth struggles to eliminate anyone from a long line of suspects. When another slain victim is discovered with the same cryptic markings, she’s forced to rethink the investigation.

Has Ruth got what it takes to solve the case before the murderer attacks again?

The Snowdonia Killings is the first book in the DI Ruth Hunter Crime Thriller series and set against the majestic backdrop of Snowdonia, a timeless land of Arthurian legend, folklore, and myth. If you like dark police procedurals, psychologically complex characters, and shocking twists, then you’ll love Simon McCleave’s pulse-pounding debut novel.

©2019 Simon McCleave (P)2020 Simon McCleave

What listeners say about The Snowdonia Killings

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Disappointing plot and annoying narration

I do so enjoy my British mysteries and thought I’d found a new series by author Simon McCleave. It started out quite well until about halfway through. McCleave tried to create a complex murder investigation but, unfortunately, the plot took a downward spiral. Tracking a perplexing double-murder suspect, DI Ruth “Hunter” {play on words?} and her alcoholic partner Nick lead us on an entangled, far-fetched and often confusing investigation (convoluted ending). I kept getting lost, eventually finding my way back, just to get lost again (I replayed many previous chapters). An extremely interesting and mysterious subplot (Ruth and her missing partner Sarah) was never concluded; whatever happened to the mysterious Sarah? It took me much longer than the 10-plus hours to finish. A waste of a treasured credit for me. The ending fell flat! Of course, maybe it was just me. Each to their own.

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4 + TV

Audible better pick up more of this series.... I have a lot of reading to catch up on before this goes to TV. This has a rough start but stick with it. I like being swept along by an accelerating plot until there is no stopping the listen....

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  • Shaun V. Hewitt
  • 12-07-20

OK, I get the joke now, it's a parody.

OK, I get the joke now, this is a parody of a detective novel isn't it. Now I know this, I can enjoy the rest of the audio. I couldn't understand all the comments of it being 'dark' (it's not, it's extremely tepid) or that it is brilliant writing: well maybe as a parody it passes. In my original review I mentioned the excruciating lack of any attempt to pronounce Welsh place names correctly, this continues throughout the book (two mistakes in the name Rhyl, how do you even manage that?). Once or twice though, Bruton will make a positively perfect rendition of a really complicated place name, but she does it IN A DIFFERENT VOICE !!!!!!! That's right, the editors drop in someone else saying complicated words, I have never known this happen before. Adding to the parody 'effect' is the amount of sentences repeated because the editor forgot to remove them, six so far. One other thing that had my partner and I laughing out loud is the guidebook segments. When the detective meets her daughter in Conwy, they meet outside the smallest house in Britain. We then get the guided tour of the house, telling us the size of the rooms, when it was last lived in and the hat size of the last person to live there. When she drives through Corwen (only one mistake in that place name) they drive past the statue of Owain Glyndŵr (pronounced perfectly!) and we get to hear when it was unveiled, the artist, how tall it is and how much the plinth weighs. None of this is ANYTHING to do with the lacklustre storyline, but it does enhance the parody. As you can probably tell by now, I absolutely hated this from beginning to almost the end. I gave up by chaper 33. . . . . . . . . . . (The following was my original review) I can't get past chapter three. If you choose someone to narrate a story set in north Wales, a story where the place is an integral part of the plot, for pities sake get someone who at least has a stab at Welsh pronunciation. In the first chapter Libby Brunton mispronounces the Welsh name of Snowdon, which is in the ruddy title ! She makes TWO mistakes in the Welsh word for police alone, and continually puts the emphasis on the wrong syllable in the name of the town where the story is set, which sets the teeth on edge about every five minutes. These are just three instances, there are MANY, MANY more. Sorry, I can't take any more of it. This is a lazy insult to the Welsh language.

4 people found this helpful

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  • alliep
  • 12-30-20

Disappointing to say the least

I was SO looking forward to this book. I know the area well, and thought it would be an interesting read. The narrator has a pleasant voice, but it is not the one for this book. The story dragged until the final chapter, when a bearly credible ending, appeared, which made no sense of the rest of the story. Welsh speakers were added in for the more complex words., but there were plenty of changes. Oedipus pronounced Oh Eedipus for example. I detest smoking. story constantly references this in great detail. I don't care that the character smokes, but gross descriptions of it left me wanting to vomit. Lots of loose ends that were never resolved or went anywhere, and muddled what there was of a story. It was almost as if the author was trying to cram as many plotlines as possible, but didn't know what to do with them when they were there. If I heard one more word about the scenery, lesbians, smoking or obvious red herrings, i think I would have screamed! All the cliches needed was the detective driving a classic car! I didn't feel any empathy or bond with the characters, who were one dimensional and wooden. It had so much promise, that was not fulfilled.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-11-21

Enjoyable police procedural with unforeseen climax

I really enjoyed this book. It had some really novel aspects ... Ruth had been in lesbian relationship and her partner got on a train to go to work 4 years previous and had never been seen again ... Ruth's colleague, Nick is a total alcoholic which also has its problems for the investigation. The narration is good although unfortunately Libby did have some problems with Welsh names and words ... practice makes perfect 😁😷

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  • Miss W
  • 01-03-21

Very Disappointing

Whilst I very much enjoyed the story and accuracy of the Welsh locations described, this Audible version was ruined by the clumsy and indecipherable attempts at the Welsh language pronunciations. So disappointed as a resident of this part of the country, I was looking forward to hearing a story set in my location. Also as a learner of the language myself, I am aware of the challenge of pronunciation but cannot understand why this could not have been coached or better still a narrator sought who could have managed the language/accents the setting of the book demands.

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  • Ryan
  • 01-01-21

Solid Start to the Series

The story was easy to follow and kept me interested throughout. The main characters were likeable and although this may sound cold, I had no sympathy for the victims. I thought the narrator did a good job and will certainly listen to the remainder of the series as they become available.

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  • Anne
  • 12-28-20

left wanting more

first time listening to this author and not disappointed. the plot is well crafted with many twists and the final twist at the end. both of the main characters have personal battles but these do not overshadow the overall story.

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  • vanda jones
  • 12-19-20

The pronunciation of Welsh name places etc was abysmal

Good clear voice but get the Welsh words spoken correctly. I thought the place names sounded awful the mispronunciation made me cringe.

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  • SandraL
  • 12-06-20

Interesting start to the series

Simon McCleave is a new author to me. I'd had this book on my Kindle for ages, but get much less time to read than to listen so was very happy when it finally came to Audible. It's the first in a new series. DI Ruth Hunter has just moved from the Met to sleepy North Wales and is surprised when she gets thrown in at the deep end to investigate a murder on her first day! Ruth is an interesting character with a backstory of a missing partner, which I'm sure will be explored more in future books. Her partner, DS Nick Evans, is an alcoholic and it was interesting to see how he functioned in daily life. The storyline was interesting with some great tense moments and I didn't guess the identity of the killer. The book is called The Snowdonia Killings but I don't feel that the author made enough of this magnificent setting. One thing I definitely disliked, as a non smoker, was the constant references to Ruth wanting a 'ciggie'. She seemed to smoke non stop, wherever she was, and I found this so irritating I wanted to scream! I do hope that future books won't dwell on this so much. The narration by Libbie Brunton was good, but there do seem to be some editing issues - sentences repeated etc.

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  • Anne
  • 11-28-20

What a good book.

Excellent story, well narrated. Hopefully we will be having more from Simon McCleave on Audible, before too long.

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  • Jeanette NORMAN
  • 01-17-21

Found this a most enjoyable "who done it"

If you are into crime fiction you are likely to enjoy this read/listen too. I am feed up with many author's creating their fictional leading DCI's as harbouring tortured horrific pasts etc etc etc Boring. This is refreshing change.