Source: Publisher

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
four-stars

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)
four-stars
Characters
four-stars
Narration (Audio)
four-half-stars
Overall: four-stars

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:


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