“The car Vera was driving was large, new, and rather expensive. One of the perks of her rank. Mrs. Eliot would consider it hte sort of car to be driven by a successful man. Yet Vera was large and shambolic, with bare legs and blotchy skin.” (Silent Voices by Ann Cleeves)
Apparently its the time of year for me to hop on my genre fiction soapbox. In my never-ending and perhaps misguided attempt to make all patrons and acquaintances into omnivorous readers, I must say: don’t overlook the mystery. Start with ones written in foreign countries – they are all I read. A foreign mystery is the best kind of armchair travel: unfamiliar words (in this case: Pet, Love, and Bairn) and customs all couched in a fast moving plot.
I picked up this volume after having watched the TV show Vera and falling for the Scottish accents and blustery weather. I don’t believe my tastes in mysteries are discerning enough to objectively say whether this was a good or bad one, but I can positively identify it as an entertaining read. I actually would suggest this as a mystery-finding technique: find the book that belongs to your favorite TV series and start exploring the genre from there. This should be rather easy since most mystery TV shows either start with a book series or spawn one later.
Buy – Borrow – TBR – Avoid
Length: 320 pgs
Ending: Satisfying, but impossible to figure out from the hints provided
Further Reading: For other England-based mysteries, I would suggest Georgette Heyer or Agatha Christie. Also be aware that there are book counterpoints to the shows Bones, Castle, or Monk.