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The first in a series of 7 crime books, so far, starring Inspector Ian Frey and Detective 'Nine-Nails' McGray.  Set in Edinburgh in 1888 Frey is sent from Scotland Yard in London to help McGray, in his new but fake department investigating the occult, investigate the murder of a viruoso violinist who was murdered in his own home in a locked room with no other way in or out.

 

This was better than I expected and I learned a lot about violins and catgut - wait to you read about that! I also enjoy the 1800's and being set in Edinburgh made a change from Victorian London.  McGray seems to believe in the occult but his backstory emerges through the book and all becomes clear in the end. 

 

The characters are well drawn the plot is a pot-boiler and the prose is very well written. 

 

It was a page turner and it has stayed with me for quite a while. 

 

Recommended.

Edited by lunababymoonchild

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I'm so glad you enjoyed this! I love this series and I actually think they get better as they go. The backstory of McGray that you mention gets really interesting. 

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8 minutes ago, Hayley said:

I'm so glad you enjoyed this! I love this series and I actually think they get better as they go. The backstory of McGray that you mention gets really interesting. 


Thank you. We have book 2 (and book 3) in the house so I'll get a look at that as soon as - the TBR is piling up, lol

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I've got these as well, they sound great!

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I have the 1st of the series, though not read yet. I think I bought it after Hayley’s review.

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I have the 1st of the series, though not read yet. I think I bought it after Hayley’s review.

 

(Why bother typing your own reply when you can copy and paste someone else's...)

 

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45 minutes ago, Marie H said:

I have the 1st of the series, though not read yet. I think I bought it after Hayley’s review.

 

3 minutes ago, Raven said:

I have the 1st of the series, though not read yet. I think I bought it after Hayley’s review.

 

(Why bother typing your own reply when you can copy and paste someone else's...)

 

 

I looked for Hayley's review and could not find it. If one of the mods can tack mine on to the end of her's I'll be happy

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24 minutes ago, lunababymoonchild said:

I looked for Hayley's review and could not find it. If one of the mods can tack mine on to the end of her's I'll be happy

It was way back in 2015 (and in a book blog :blush:). It should show up in a search, although I see that it doesn't so thank you for noticing that! I'll bring it up with Invision.

 

My review was:

 

'I think I mentioned earlier that I found this book in a charity shop. The blurb describes a section of the police force which deals with the paranormal and this instantly reminded me of the Peter Grant novels by Ben Aaronovitch, which I loved. I then realised it was set in the Victorian period so then I just had to get it :D. While there are obviously some similarities with the Peter Grant novels though I was surprised at how different they were. I don't want to give too much away but the supernatural theme is dealt with very differently. I liked the characters, although the narrator has some qualities which make him quite unlikable at times they fit with his background and don't become distracting. I also liked the setting, it felt real and not over exaggerated. In some novels set in a specific time period (like The Interpretation of Murder!) the author seems to feel the need to shove random historical facts at you that are irrelevant to the story but that is absolutely not the case here. There are references to contemporary issues but they're very subtle and well placed. I found out after I finished the book that it's the first in a series called 'Frey and McGray' (the two main detectives) and the next book, Fever of the Blood is set to release in February. I'm definitely planning to get it. I have a feeling that the series will only improve as the characters develop further.'

 

I'm pleased to note that I was right about the series improving :lol:. For context, I had recently read The Interpretation of Murder by Jed Rubenfeld and thought it was terrible. I was clearly still feeling a bit disgruntled about it :giggle2:.

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16 minutes ago, Hayley said:

It was way back in 2015 (and in a book blog :blush:). It should show up in a search, although I see that it doesn't so thank you for noticing that! I'll bring it up with Invision.

 

My review was:

 

'I think I mentioned earlier that I found this book in a charity shop. The blurb describes a section of the police force which deals with the paranormal and this instantly reminded me of the Peter Grant novels by Ben Aaronovitch, which I loved. I then realised it was set in the Victorian period so then I just had to get it :D. While there are obviously some similarities with the Peter Grant novels though I was surprised at how different they were. I don't want to give too much away but the supernatural theme is dealt with very differently. I liked the characters, although the narrator has some qualities which make him quite unlikable at times they fit with his background and don't become distracting. I also liked the setting, it felt real and not over exaggerated. In some novels set in a specific time period (like The Interpretation of Murder!) the author seems to feel the need to shove random historical facts at you that are irrelevant to the story but that is absolutely not the case here. There are references to contemporary issues but they're very subtle and well placed. I found out after I finished the book that it's the first in a series called 'Frey and McGray' (the two main detectives) and the next book, Fever of the Blood is set to release in February. I'm definitely planning to get it. I have a feeling that the series will only improve as the characters develop further.'

 

I'm pleased to note that I was right about the series improving :lol:. For context, I had recently read The Interpretation of Murder by Jed Rubenfeld and thought it was terrible. I was clearly still feeling a bit disgruntled about it :giggle2:.


Ah. Thank you.

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Just finished this last night, stayed up til about 12.15, went to bed feeling very glad I don't have a fireplace!  And I see what you mean about the catgut!  An enjoyable romp, and a great start to a new series, I did like some of McGray's banter towards Frey, even if he wasn't very kind at the time. Will be interesting to see how their partnership develops.

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7 hours ago, Madeleine said:

Just finished this last night, stayed up til about 12.15, went to bed feeling very glad I don't have a fireplace!  And I see what you mean about the catgut!  An enjoyable romp, and a great start to a new series, I did like some of McGray's banter towards Frey, even if he wasn't very kind at the time. Will be interesting to see how their partnership develops.

I'm so glad you liked it too! And don't have a fireplace :lol:. I love the relationship Frey and McGray have. It only gets better!

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