Archive for the ‘Alison Bruce’ Category

The Promise by Alison Bruce, a review.

The Promise by Alison Bruce

I am gradually reading all of Mrs Bruce’s Gary Goodhew books, The Promise is number six of seven.

Each succeeding book is better than the one preceding it; a difficult accomplishment when the first one, Cambridge Blue is so good.

The brutal murder of a homeless man, known to DC Gary Goodhew, prompts his early return to work while still recovering from injuries received during his last case. Cambridge is the setting for this and the books before it, is captured perfectly; the plot is intricate and convoluted, the characters are well drawn, the ending unexpected.

It is a really difficult book to put down until you have finished reading it I have ordered Cambridge Black and I am looking forward to reading it. It has The Promise of being an excellent read.

The Backs Written by Alison Bruce a review.

The Backs written by Alison Bruce

Alison has become one of my favourite authors and I am gradually reading her Gary Goodhew series. I say gradually with good reason. I enjoy her writing and read the books one at a time with an interval in between each one, so I enjoy each one as a fresh read.

“The Backs” is number five in the series and number six “The Promise” is sitting on the shelf ready for my next special occasion.

The Backs, as is all of Alison’s books, the ones I have read so far, set in and around Cambridge. I am familiar with the city and the surrounding area. For me, this familiarity is a bonus.

Following a violent scene-setting prologue the action moves what was for the story the present day, the Gog Magog hills at night, a burning car and the discovery of a gruesome murder.

Jane Osborne’s return to Cambridge sets the story off in another direction and the plot weaves around several different strands. DC Gary Goodhew and the team he belongs to gradually, start to untangle the events leading up to the murder and hitherto undiscovered crimes of the past. In the process darker, secrets emerge from their hiding places.

As with all Alison’s novels (the ones I have read so far), the characters are well-drawn and the plot multilayered, as each layer is lifted more is revealed underneath. Each time the reader thinks they may have an inkling of who the villain may be or the possible outcome the ground shifts underneath.

All in all a damn good read.

The Silence by Alison Bruce a review.

The Silence by Alison Bruce

I have enjoyed all of Alison Bruce’s books. The Silence is no exception. The story is set in the, for me familiar comfortable setting of Cambridge.

The story builds on a series of tragic events that seem to have little in common initially, other than the ages of those involved and suicides. As the plot unfolds we are on the edge of our seats hoping that those involved remain safe and escape unhurt while the tension increases as the truth is revealed.  The finale for me was so profound that the book affected me like no other since reading  The Catcher in the Rye. This is a gripping story that engages the reader completely.

A very suitable addition to a recommended reading list for secondary schools, in my opinion.

The Moment Before Impact by Alison Bruce, a review

The Moment Before Impact by Alison Bruce

Most of us I am sure are familiar with books that you can’t put down because you want to know what happens next but don’t want to the story to end because they are so good, this is one of those books.

The story is set in and around Cambridge, the streets and places are familiar to those who live in or visit the city. For others who do not share that familiarity with the city, a Google search makes it accessible and I am sure encourages readers to visit and see it for themselves.

The plot is engaging and draws the reader in, Celia Henry a tenacious former reporter tries to make sense of the circumstances leading up to a serious road accident. Those involved have become  the adults she watched growing up as children while their neighbour.

An open and shut case becomes increasing more open and less shut as the story moves on with Celia prompting the police to look again. The story grips and holds the reader as it twists and turns revealing more of the back story.

One word describes it for me “Brilliant” but don’t take my word for it, read it yourself.

More please Mrs. Bruce

The Moment Before Impact is available on Amazon and in book shops.

The Calling by Alison Bruce a review.

Front cover of the book The Calling

The Calling by Alison Bruce

Having read the first two books in the DC Gary Goodhew series (Cambridge Blue and The Siren) I was keen to try The Calling; the third or more accurately the first.

Alison had written The Calling before any of the others but decided that it was better placed as the third novel in the series.

There is always the problem of a Cambridge based detective being compared to that of Oxford’s Inspector Morse, Edinburgh’s Inspector Rebus or Bath’s Superintendent Diamond. DC Gary Goodhew is further down the ranks, a mere Detective Constable but none the less just as talented.

Goodhew struggles without any advantage of rank to find his way through a maze of clues, using unorthodox methods and skating round procedural niceties to find the answer to a troubling series of cruel murders. The ending is edgy and tense with the outcome by no means a foregone conclusion.

I enjoyed the book, like a great many of Alison’s fans, Cambridge is local and familiar to me, we have ownership of the settings.

This is, as are Alison’s other books well written, detailed and literate but above all else a damn good entertaining read.

The Siren by Alison Bruce

Book cover of The Siren by Alison Bruce

The Siren by Alison Bruce

I never thought that retirement would be so time consuming. The thought that my twilight years would stretch in front of me unfilled allowing me time to read, watch films, write and generally idle away my time seem far from the reality.

Finally I have found the time to read The Siren, the second in the Gary Goodhew series of novels. Although Cambridge Blue was excellent, a brilliant first novel,  I think The Siren is even better. As with Cambridge Blue the book is set in my part of the world many of the places and the landscape of the fens are familiar to me, though I must admit not Mill Road Cemetery. Up to the very end I was left guessing. I shall be buying the next in the series, The Calling or adding it to my Christmas list for Santa’s attention.

 

 

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