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Worse Than Dead

Inspector Drake, Book 2
Narrated by: Richard Elfyn
Length: 10 hrs and 20 mins
4 out of 5 stars (23 ratings)
Regular price: $24.95
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Publisher's Summary

A ferry leaves Dublin....

The chief engineer lies dead on the car deck....

There’s a killer on board....

Inspector Drake is called from a seminar on cybercrime to meet the ferry docking at the port of Holyhead. Frank Rosen, the chief engineer, lies on the car deck, a knife through his heart. For the first time, Drake knows where the killer is, but he doesn’t know who. When Rosen’s house is ransacked the night after he’s killed, Drake knows the killer was looking for something. The data stick Rosen’s wife finds may hold the clues. But the codes and numbers on it only complicate the investigation. And then Drake’s cousin makes contact and tells him he has information. But can Drake rely on him, or does he have another agenda? And when the team discover a direct link to drug dealing in North Wales and beyond, there are powerful forces at work. 

Drake’s cousin drags Drake’s family into the middle of the case that piles the pressure on Drake, who’s facing regular counseling for his OCD and the prospect of losing his father to cancer. When Drake’s superior demotes him and acts entirely against protocols, Drake knows that something is wrong. Establishing the evidence takes him to Dublin and Cardiff and then on a last minute chase over North Wales to catch the killer.

©2014 Stephen Puleston (P)2019 Stephen Puleston

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

A new and improved Inspector Drake?

Inspector Ian Drake works hard to control is Ritual habits as he faces family turmoil and illness in the midst of a complicated new case. He fears that his new boss will use his OCD tendencies against him. Add in visits to a department therapist and an case with more twists and turns that the Welsh highways, you have a story that is fast paced and engaging. One of my favorite all time narrators Richard Elfyn draws you fully into the characters with a slightly musical lilt.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars

A great thriller

In this second book we meet again with Inspector Drake... and his life is even more complicated.

He and Caron are called to investigate a murder in a ferry but quickly it's becoming clear that there is a lot more going on. Drake's personal life is getting more difficult to handle, and it's not only the (rightful) demands of his wife asking him to take an interest in the lives of his daughters. His father's sickness has become terminal, and his cousin, who claimed to have information on the case, it's up to his neck in personal troubles. And, of course, there is the counselling he is undergoing about his OCD.

Yeah, you can say his plate is full...

Drake and Caron follow the leads, between lots of red herrings, twist and turns that make this case really hard. And in the middle of all this, Drake's new chief decided to demote him.

This is a really good thriller, with an excellent side of policial procedure, great pace and plot that will keep you enthralled until the end.

The narration by Richard Elfyn is superb, and adds to the enjoyment of the whole story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

Cancer, Drugs and Murder

As the stresses in his family live continue, Drake and his team are tasked to investigate a murder on the local ferry, leading them to a complex and very sophisticated drug ring, money laundering and even more murders.
If you enjoy police procedures stories with a very English flare you'll probably love this one almost as much as I did. It's fast paced with careful, methodical investigation techniques and a quirky, obsessive hero determined to endear himself to you, even as he drives the reader crazy with his rituals.
Well worth the read.

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Great Audiobook

It was very intriguing, suspenseful, and mind blowing because it keeps you wondering who killed Frank Rosen. I enjoyed this book and will listen to this book.

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Confusing & exciting. Keeps attention going.

The mental problems of the investigator are like worms that get into your brain & add to the tension.

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  • Simon
  • 03-09-19

Brilliant series

This is the second book in the series and i loved it. You don't need to have read or listened to book 1 first but it would help with backgrounds.
This one follows drake as he is sent to investigate the mysterious death of a man on a boat, which is made harder by the arrogant man who runs the docks as he wants the boat back out again ASAP.

There are loads of twists in this book which kept me guessing all the way through and i loved it.

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  • S. J. Hall
  • 03-05-19

What should have been a closed room (ship) mystery

As exciting as the previous story, this should have been much easier to solve. After all, when there's a murder on a ship, the murderer and the weapon should be relatively easy to find. Unfortunately, the ship's port manager wants the passengers off his ship and the cargo removed as its food that will rot and his insurance premiums will go up if he loses the lot.

The Inspector's OCD for clean and clear appears to have increased and I'm convinced he really gets on with his team members. His own problems clash with his duties, but he's determined to get to the answers he needs. Letting all the passengers go isn't helpful and where is the lost laptop hidden?

The twists and turns add to the interest in this story. I'm sure the next book is being written and I look forward to hearing it soon.

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  • LeMiliere
  • 03-01-19

Compelling

Inspector Drake has OCD behavioral issues which he strives to be able to control. His father has cancer, which is pushing Drake deeper into depression and his home life is suffering because of his extreme dedication to his job. Now to make matters worse there is a new Superintendent who seems to enjoy complicating Drake’s life.

When a man is killed on board a Cross Channel ferry, you would think finding the murderer would be easy, all the passengers and crew are still on board, so the killer must be too. But things are never as simple as you would expect and complications arise making this supposedly simple murder much more difficult to solve. Complications involving several more deaths, drug smuggling, and political corruption as well as money laundering, as Drake tries to solve this one with his hands seemingly tied behind his back.

Drake is a complicated, tragic figure, who you can't help but feel empathy towards which just goes to show the talent of this author. All the characters in this story are well drawn and interesting, even the minor ones. Stephen Puleston gives us information about the lives of the criminals as well as the police officers involved in the case.

The narration was very well done and added to my overall enjoyment of this book.

I was given this audiobook as a gift and am voluntarily writing my review



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  • TerryHeth
  • 02-18-19

Just gets better

Love these books. Drake is a great character. Flawed but solid, I hate when they end, I need to know what’s next for him & in his world.
This story was a rollercoaster from start to end. With the main storyline & the side story. The characters changing & growing.
Narrator was great. Tempo & feeling spot on. More need more

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  • Teresa Harwood
  • 02-18-19

Complex Crime Thriller

The second Inspector Drake book continues to build on the characters in the first book. Inspector Drake is plagued with rituals related to his OCD, he is a complex character who does not feel comfortable with many people. He also has family problems which loom large on the horizon. When a dead body is found on a ferry the perpetrator has to be either a passenger or crew member but Drake is pressurised into letting everyone disembark, therefore letting the killer go. The subsequent plot is convoluted and I found it quite hard to follow in parts but the conclusion brought everything together nicely. I must just say the narrator did a fantastic job, I will definitely read book 3 when it is available.

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  • SandraL
  • 02-15-19

North Wales Police Procedural

DI Drake and his team are called in to investigate a dead body found on a ferry from Dublin to Holyhead. It seems like an open and shut case as the murderer is obviously still on the ship. But it’s not that simple and soon more bodies turn up.

I have already read the prequel and Book 1 of the series and I couldn’t wait to get stuck into this one and be transported back to North Wales. The plot is complex, with many characters and red herrings, but not so much that I couldn’t follow. Once again Drake’s OCD plays a big part in the book as he tries to get his rituals under control, whilst working long hours under pressure and trying to cope with family problems too. This is a well written police procedural with realistic characters and situations, and I look forward to reading more in the series.

Richard Elfyn's brilliant narration added to my enjoyment of the book.