Good Morning Midnight, by Reginald Hill

This is the one which opens with a man committing suicide, but using a very elaborate method which mirrors the way that his father killed himself ten years earlier. Pascoe gets involved in the investigation more by accident than by design, but is perplexed at Andy Dalziel's attitude - rather than showing any interest in the suspicious aspects of the death, Dalziel is insistent that it's a suicide and warrants no further investigatory effort.

Turns out this is the third D+P book I've read - I don't think I really rated the previous two, and this one didn't convert me either (but it was on the shelf in the library so an easy choice).

I think the problem was that I wanted it to be a crime story - certainly the opening was promising - but it had pretensions to be a novel. And I'm not sure he's really good enough: the bits about the investigation and explanation of the crime were reasonably interesting but there was a load too much other guff in there which I found it hard to pay attention too.

In fact, the book didn't open with the suicide: there was a little preface about a boy finding a bomb in Iraq, and a similar epilogue, but apart from the fact that some of the more shady characters in the main story appeared to be involved in arms dealing, I didn't pick up on the relevance of that at all, even though I think it was meant to be relevant.

Like the other two books (I think), Dalziel and Pascoe don't actually pair up for the investigation: more that they spar in the office about (a) whether Pascoe should be spending his time on it, and (b) what Dalziel knows about the previous case and isn't telling. There are some skeletons in Dalziel's cupboard that are uncovered, which I guess may be more interesting if you're really keen on the characters.

So not that great really. Although I see it gets good reviews on Amazon so maybe it's just me.

Completed : 20-Oct-2009 (audiobook)

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