Publisher: HarperAudio

Audio: Garden of Lamentations by Deborah Crombie

Posted March 9, 2017 by Anne in Book Review | | 2 Comments

Audio:  Garden of Lamentations by Deborah CrombieGarden of Lamentations by Deborah Crombie
Series: Duncan Kincaid & Gemma James #17
Narrator: Gerard Doyle
Published by HarperAudio on February 7, 2017
Genres: Mystery
Pages: 432
Format: Audiobook
Length: 12 hours, 46 minutes
Source: Publisher
Amazon | Audio | B&N | Goodreads

On a beautiful morning in mid-May, the body of a young woman is found in one of Notting Hill’s private gardens. To passersby, the pretty girl in the white dress looks as if she’s sleeping. But Reagan Keating has been murdered, and the lead detective, DI Kerry Boatman, turns to Gemma James for help. She and Gemma worked together on a previous investigation, and Gemma has a personal connection to the case: Reagan was the nanny of a child who attends the same dance studio as Toby, Gemma and Kincaid’s son.

Gemma soon discovers that Reagan’s death is the second tragedy in this exclusive London park; a few months before, a young boy died in a tragic accident. But when still another of the garden’s residents meets a violent end, it becomes clear that there are more sinister forces at play. Boatman and Gemma must stop the killer before another innocent life is taken.

While his wife is consumed with her new case, Kincaid finds himself plagued by disturbing questions about several previous—and seemingly unrelated—cases involving members of the force. If his suspicions are correct and the crimes are linked, are his family and friends in mortal danger as well? Kincaid’s hunch turns to certainty when a Metropolitan Police officer close to him is brutally attacked. There’s a traitor in the ranks, and now Kincaid wonders if he can trust anyone.

As Gemma begins to see a solution to her case, she realizes she holds a child’s fate in her hands. Can she do the right thing? And can Kincaid rely on his friends, both inside and outside the Scotland Yard force, to stand beside him as he faces the deadliest challenge of his career?


I’ve read all the books in the Duncan Kincaid & Gemma James series. I love mysteries set in England. This couple met when they worked together and Duncan was Gemma’s supervisor. When they became involved, she moved to a different group. They have had additional changes and moves over the last few months.

While it is interesting to have multiple cases happening since they have different cases, it has the downside of them not interacting professionally so much. They each spent more time on their own and without their usual teams, in these cases. So Garden of Lamentations did not have much in the way of their personal or family interactions. There were minimal glimpses of family and friends.

Gerard Doyle was a satisfying narrator. I felt the different characters and their individual voices; the pace was comfortable. And I love the accent.

The mysteries and police cases were not easily solved. The element of danger to Duncan felt very high.  He bumbled about for awhile and seemed paralyzed by the situation for a long time. Finally, he had some ideas and followed them to get the information he needed. Gemma, on the other hand, asked good questions, made observations and figured out her case very well. She also did all the child and home care.

The level of their compassion, intelligence and moral integrity makes the characters lovable along with their very human feelings and flaws. I’ll be looking forward to what happens next after all the recent upheaval in their careers, whether I read the next book or listen to it on audio.




About Deborah Crombie

Deborah Crombie was born in Dallas and grew up in Richardson, Texas, a suburb north of Dallas, second child of Charlie and Mary Darden. Her maternal grandmother, Lillian Dozier, a retired teacher, taught her to read at the tender age of four. After a rather checkered educational career, which included dropping out of high school at sixteen, she graduated from Austin College in Sherman, Texas, with a degree in biology.

She then worked in advertising and newspapers, and attended the Rice University Publishing Program. A post-university trip to England, however, cemented a life-long passion for Britain, and she later immigrated to the UK with her first husband, Peter Crombie, a Scot, living first in Edinburgh, Scotland, and then in Chester, England.

After returning to live in Dallas, a trip to Yorkshire inspired her first Detective Superintendent Duncan Kincaid/Sergeant Gemma James novel. A Share in Death [Scribner, 1993], was subsequently given Agatha and Macavity nominations for Best First Novel of 1993. The fifth novel, Dreaming of the Bones (Scribner 1997), a New York Times Notable Book for 1997, was short-listed by Mystery Writers of America for the 1997 Edgar Award for Best Novel, won the Macavity award for Best Novel, and was voted by the Independent Mystery Booksellers Association as one of the hundred best mysteries of the century. Her subsequent novels have been received with critical acclaim and are widely read internationally, particularly in Germany.

In 2009, Where Memories Lie won the Macacity Award for Best Novel. In 2010, Necessary as Blood received a Macavity nomination for Best Novel.

Crombie’s novels are published in North America, Japan, Germany, France, Czechoslovakia, Spain, Romania, Greece, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and numerous other countries.

Although she travels to England several times a year, Crombie lives in McKinney, Texas, an historic town north of Dallas, sharing a circa 1905 Texas Craftsman bungalow with her husband, Rick Wilson, two German shepherds (Dax and Jasmine), and three cats. She is an afficionado of tea and cocktails, enjoys cooking and admiring her garden, reading, birdwatching, and playing with her dogs.

Review Breakdown
Story (Plot)
Narration (Audio)
Overall: four-stars

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

Into the Fire by Jeaniene Frost

Into the Fire by Jeaniene Frost

Posted February 28, 2017 by Jennifer in Book Review | 4 Comments

Into the Fire felt more like a start to a new beginning than and ending… I am sorry to say that Into the Fire broke the 5 star record for the Night Prince series for me. Like other fans, I could not wait to get my hands on Vlad’s final book, but something was missing and I cannot put my finger on it. That’s not to say that Into the Fire was not enjoyable, it was. I think the wait and anticipation was too high so the ending of the series was a little anticlimactic. I wish I had taken the time to do a series reread because I went Into the Fire not remembering where we left off with the previous book, Bound by […]

Audio review: Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr

Audio review: Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr

Posted October 6, 2016 by Anne in Book Review | 5 Comments

       I listened in preparation for NOLA Storycon. There is every reason I would not like Wicked Lovely; it’s young adult. I’m not sure yet if the classification is urban fantasy or paranormal romance since this is the first in the Wicked Lovely series. The first book always has possible world-building issues. There were some but not as many since it is about the fae but Aislinn is not fae and has some misconceptions. There weren’t an overwhelming amount of details for this reason. I learned slowly along with her. I had trouble getting started listening, trying a couple times and couldn’t get going and then, I did. The narrator, Alyssa Bresnahan, must have done well because I was able to focus on the story […]

Audio Review: Creepy! Bird Box by Josh Malerman

Audio Review: Creepy! Bird Box by Josh Malerman

Posted September 5, 2016 by Jonetta in Book Review | 7 Comments

        This was a creepy story, not necessarily thrilling. It’s an apocalyptic world where sight outside of a closed environment puts a person at risk. It’s told in the voice of Malorie, a young woman who is pregnant at the time the threat escalates and changes everyday existence for those on the planet.   It was an interesting story, made more intriguing by the transitions between the past and present as Malorie reflects on the beginning in the context of her thinking and journey in the present. Other characters in the story were described more so from their human nature perspectives rather than anything about their backgrounds prior to the apocalypse.   I liked the story though didn’t love it. It was longer […]

Audio Review: What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan

Audio Review: What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan

Posted July 18, 2016 by Jonetta in Book Review | 6 Comments

    Rachel Jenner lets her son run ahead of her in the park and in that brief moment he disappears. What happens next is a disturbing portrait of how theses cases are handled by law enforcement, the media and the public using social media outlets with the family caught in the middle.   It soon became obvious to me that this story was less about a mystery and more about the psychological examination of those involved in child disappearances, from family and friends to the police charged with finding the child on through those on the perimeter (media, citizenry and those just interested). It wasn’t pretty but unfortunately rang true to life.   The outcome wasn’t as predictable as I thought it might be […]

New Series! Sweet Little Lies by Jill Shalvis

New Series! Sweet Little Lies by Jill Shalvis

Posted June 24, 2016 by Jennifer in Book Review | 10 Comments

     I’m all about Jill Shalvis, so when I saw she had a new series coming out I knew I was going to read it. But when the opportunity came to listen to Sweet Little Lies narrated by Karen White, I figured, Why Not? I’ve loved the author and narrator pairing in the past with Shalvis’ Animal Magnetism series. I have a history of not falling in love with the first couple in a series. I don’t know why, but it seems like the couples that follow have better storylines and/or chemistry. For me, Pru and Finn fell into that first couple syndrome. They were likable but not lovable. I think (for me) what kept them from reaching the lovable status was the “big secret” Pru was […]

Best in the Series! Hard to Come By by Laura Kaye

Best in the Series! Hard to Come By by Laura Kaye

Posted December 12, 2014 by Jennifer in Book Review | 3 Comments

     It just blows my mind that this series’ time line is just a couple of weeks. There is so much going on that it feels like it should be longer. This band of brothers are getting closer to taking down the bad guys and the plot thickens. Just when they think they know what they are up against new information comes to light. Laura Kaye has written a great romantic suspense series. She continues to hold my attention with fast plot lines and sexy romances. Speaking of sexy romances, Marz. WTH?! I had no idea he was going to be my fave. WOW What a sweet heart and dirty talker. Marz it total swoon worthy. He is the heart of group. Anytime the […]

Another Hit from the Golden Team! Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews

Another Hit from the Golden Team! Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews

Posted November 1, 2014 by Jennifer in Book Review | 8 Comments

    There was little doubt that I would enjoy BURN FOR ME. Why? Let me count the reasons. 1. Ilona Andrews wrote it. Team of Ilona and Gordon Andrews writes some of the best Urban Fantasy out there! Their writing is imaginative with complex world building, strong heroines and yummy alpha males. And just plain fun to get lost in. 2. Renée Raudman is the narrator. Renée narrates all of Andrews’ books (so far) and she’s the reason I didn’t read the eARC. I had to wait for the audio. Renée is the cherry on top of the hot, gooey goodness that is Andrews’ writing.   3. Great Characters Like I said above, the heroines and heroes are always fun within an Ilona Andrews’ world. But they […]