|Believing the Lie by Elizabeth George|
|Reviewer: Sue Magee|
|Summary: a good story which would have been a lot better for being a lot shorter.|
|Buy? Maybe||Borrow? Maybe|
|Pages: 971/22h12m||Date: February 2012|
|Publisher: Thorndike Press|
Detective Inspector Lynley was approached by business magnate Bernard Fairclough for a confidential review of the death of his nephew. He was adamant that he didn't want a formal investigation - he simply wanted to be happy that all that could be done had been done and that the coroner's inquest had produced the correct verdict of accidental death. Lynley is still grieving after the murder of his wife with the situation not being made any easier by the fact that he can't understand why Helen died, what caused her death. He headed for the Lake District with Deborah and Simon St James to provide cover for his investigations.
It's a big book and even with the luxury of listening to an audiodwon load (which I bought myself) it was hard to escape the thought that the book didn't need to be quite so long. It was pleasantly indulgent to listen to more than twenty two hours of narration by Tim Bentinck but I suspect it would have been equally good in a shorter version. (Bentinck's narration was superb - I couldn't fault it in any way - and it was interesting to consider the fact that Bentinck, perhaps better known to Radio 4 listeners as David Archer is the 12th Earl of Portland. The fictional D I Lynley is also a member of the aristocracy but still persisting with the day job.)
Even allowing for the length it's a good, well-worked story bringing in a good number of current preoccupations. I wasn't entirely convinced by Deborah St James as the loose canon investigator but it was hard not to empathise with her longing for a child and her knowledge that she could never carry one to full term. I didn't spot the solution to the mystery, but equally I wasn't completely convinced by this either.
It was a good story, despite my reservations and it won't stop me from buying the next book in the series - I just hope that there's rather more of Barbara Havers to provide that little bit of acidity which this book seemed to lack.
For more from the Lake District we can recommend anything by Paula Daly.
You could get a free audio download of Believing the Lie by Elizabeth George with a 30-day Audible free trial at Amazon.co.uk.
You can read more book reviews or buy Believing the Lie by Elizabeth George at Amazon.co.uk
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