The Judas Flower

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 26 Jan 2018

Member Reviews

The Judas Flower by Douglas Lindsay
Book #2: DI Pereira & DS Bain Series
Source: Netgalley
My Rating: 3/5 stars

Round two of the DI Pereira and DS Bain series has the two intrepid detectives hot on the heels of a sick killer with a penchant for symbolism.

As with so many things in life (and books!) the whole mess Pereira and Bain find themselves a part of started with a secret and whole mountain of money.  Archie Wilson won the lottery, and by won the lottery I mean life-changing, never have to worry about anything ever again kind of money.  That kind of money brings out the crazies, and one of those crazies had an ax to grind with Archie Wilson.  When Pereira and Bain get called to the scene, Archie Wilson has had a very bad night and finds himself all kinds of dead in a cemetery with a Judas flower in his hands and a metal cross pounded into his skull. 

As they should, Pereira and Bain begin their inquiries by following the money, all the money.  What they discover is a long, winding path leading them to the Catholic Church and an ill-fated day many, many years ago that left a young boy dead and three others safe and sound all telling the same story about a horrible accident.  Trouble is, the story the survivors have been telling for so many years isn’t quite the truth, and the truth has a way revealing itself, eventually.  What’s more, Archie Wilson was one of three survivors and as Pereira and Bain quickly discover, this case isn’t about the money at all, but about the righting of a terrible wrong.

The Bottom Line: At the end of the first Pereira and Bain book, I asked for more time and space to develop the characters, to give me more full-bodied characters I could feel invested in and connected to.  That sort of happened here . . . . As the plot of the Judas Flower unfolds, there is a great deal more information about DI Pereira and very little, once again, about DS Bain.  This isn’t a terribly fast-paced book, but it doesn’t necessarily drag either.  There is just enough weirdness and twistiness to keep one turning pages, but not so totally absorbing that you can’t put the book down and sleep.  As you can clearly discern from my comments, I wasn’t at all blown away by this book, but I wasn’t completely disappointed either.  At the end of the day, I am sticking with the assessment I had of the first book: I will recommend this book, but not recommend it be added to the top of your TBR list.  If I come across a third book in this series, I’ll likely give it a shot, but I’m not going to go searching for that third book either.  Yeah, I’m completely on the fence 😊
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I was not able to finish this book. The characters were not too bad up until the point I quit. But a clue surfaces that is red lipstick. The female detective says it is the lipstick wearing woman they had spoken to earlier. The male detective says there must be thousands of different kinds of red lipsticks. She tells him she knows. It's a woman thing. Stopped me dead in my tracks. No woman knows those things. If something that preposterous is said in less than 100 pages, what is going to make me suspend disbelief for the rest of the book.
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This book was a little darker than I expected but was pleasantly surprised by the writing style and story line.  I found myself drawn into the mystery of the dead millionaire.  It shows different sides of the investigation, the effects that are felt on the family of the detectives, and the lives that are disrupted.  It's really put together well and was thoroughly enjoyed!
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This is the second book in the Pereira and Bain series, with Cold Cuts being the first. A great follow up and I recommend reading Cold Cuts first for some background details. A lottery winner, vengeance and murder, make this a worthy read, coupled with being set in Glasgow, I would recommend this series and author. Thank you Net Galley for my copy. Reviewed on Amazon, Goodreads and Facebook.
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The judas flower by douglas lindsay.
When a long-suppressed lust for vengeance meets £130 million, death will follow.
The Necropolis, Glasgow. A man’s body, in the shadow of the city's ancient cathedral, sits propped against a gravestone. Held upright by a length of rope around his neck, blood weeping from his eyes, killed by a small metal cross hammered into his skull, the blossom of the Judas tree in his hands.
A good read. Liked the story. 4*.
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I got this book from NetGalley in trade for an honest review. Thank you Bastei Entertaiment >>be
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DI Pereira and DS Bain are called out to solve the murder of Archie Wilson, a 130 million lottery winner who had been found with a metal cross buried in his skull and the flower of the Judas tree in his hands. The book takes place on the streets of Glasgow and includes in its subplots the struggles of DI Pereira bringing up two children whilst trying to do her job. A gritty police procedural which will keep the reader entertained and thinking. Recommended
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First time reading Douglas Lindsay  and I really enjoyed his work. Storyline was great with plenty of twists to keep you guessing until the end.
A multi millionaire lottery winner is murdered and left tied to a gravestone with a crucifix embedded in his skull - was he murdered for his money or is there another reason lurking in his past. That's the mystery that the police are left to solve.
Intriguing case for the force and plenty of suspects pop up leaving you guessing right to the end a real page turner and well worth reading if you enjoy a good crime novel.
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Oh how I loved this! Since reading Cold Cuts, the first in the Pereira and Bain series I have fallen massively in love with Douglas Lindsay's writing. I have already lined up the rest rest of his books to read in the not-so-distant future. 

After Cold Cuts I was waiting with high expectations to read book number two and The Judas Flower did not disappoint. The stories Mr. Lindsay writes always have elements that set them well apart from other writers in the genre which is part of the attraction for me but they also are so easy to read and are endlessly engaging. Cold cuts was slightly more comical due to the storyline with the same excellent writing that pulls you in making you read on and on but I enjoyed the more serious plot with the mix of money, revenge and religion.

Again, as in Cold Cuts there is plenty of black humour - this usually wouldn't get a proper laugh from me but I laughed a lot through this book. As in Cold Cuts Lindsay deals with issues of prejudice and doesn't shy away from presenting these very real problems. I also loved the passing mentions of Uig and Newcastle university both of which are close to my heart.

Pereira is an interesting character and we get to know more about her personal life in this book compared to the little snippets we got in Cold Cuts. This being a full length novel and Cold Cuts a novella I guess it was a good time to expand on her development as a character in The Judas Flower.

I hope this series is planned to go on for a long time as I for one will look forward to each and every book featuring Pereira and Bain. I recommend this series to all crime fans, an absolute pleasure to read and review. I won't hesitate to read more of Pereira and Bains' Glasgow antics in the future, I cannot wait! I am rarely this excitable over a book, author or series.

I also plan to read more from Bastei too, I don't want to miss any other great crime fiction in their catalogue. 

Thank you to Bastei/Douglas Lindsay and NetGalley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an impartial review.
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Dang, finally some interesting characters! I read so many books that most of the lead cops tend to blend into each other. These two were distinctly different and interesting. The mystery itself was a true whodunit. Truth is that I liked this book so much that I went ahead and bought a few others by this author. Eh, they were on sale, so what the heck? Great location too!
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We first met DI Pereira and sidekick DS Bain in Cold Cuts a couple of months ago. The story in that book was definitely a little different and not for the more squeamish of readers. This one however reverts more to type and our terrible twosome are charged with the task of hunting down the killer of Archie Wilson who is found in a graveyard with a small metal cross embedded in his skull. He is also holding the blossom of the Judas tree in his hands. But is his death religious, or does his recent lottery win have anything to do with things? Delving into his past sheds little more light on the case until there's another body with obvious similarities to the first. Can Pereira and Bain cut through the noise to find a link and, if so, where will it take them? Can they get to the crux of the matter and arrest the perpetrator before they kill again, or even worse, finish their list and disappear for good?
Mr Lindsay is never shy of pushing boundaries with his fiction and here, like usual, he pretty much tramples over them. In Pereira, he has created an HR tickbox dream. Single mother, Asian and bisexual to boot; her personal life being more of a hindrance than a help but, despite the odds and curve balls thrown at her from all angles, she does get the job done... eventually! She makes a good pairing with Bain too. A bit chalk and cheese, there's an obvious mutual respect and they definitely have each others's backs, despite the banter and bickering along the way. I would however like to get more under Bain's skin, He's like a straight man to Pereira's comedienne insofar as he is pretty vanilla. Well, he appears to be thus far...
Plotting is tight and well done. There are all the usual secrets, lies, red herrings and dead ends that you would expect from the genre but not too many to overshadow the actual truth, when we do eventually get to it. 
Another of this author's trademarks is front and centre in this book too; his really rather excellent black humour. He really is good at including the right amount at just the right time for it to really work with the, often heinous, crimes being described. Sometimes rather irreverent, the way he works it into the narrative is just sublime. 
All in all, another great addition to the author's already impressive back catalogue. With more than a couple of series on the go, I really can;t wait to see what he serves me up next time.
My thanks go to the Publisher and Netgalley for the chance to read this book.
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The Judas Flower follows our two detectives, DI Pereira and DS Bain, as they work to solve the mysterious murder of a lottery millionaire whose body was found in a graveyard and displayed with some weird religious undertones. As they interview more suspects and delve deeper into the motives behind the crime, they uncover some dark secrets and shady business practices, while also putting themselves at risk. I thought the investigation was well written and interesting, following a logical series of events to lead Aliyna and her partner Marc to the killer. The writing and storytelling was also much improved when compared to the first book Cold Cuts. The book was easier to read and the characters more developed and three dimensional. Overall, it was a thrilling crime books following an interesting case, with likeable and complex characters and a storyline that was not too cliche or predictable.

What I Liked

Main character Alyina Piera- I raved about this in my review of the first book, but I really appreciate the diversity in the characters, in particular Alyina. She is a single mother in a very stressful and male dominated workplace and is a person of colour, leading to several instances of discrimination and stereotyping by her colleagues. She is also bisexual and is struggling breaking up with her girlfriend and the effects this is having on not only her but also on her children. These parts of her character are not made obvious, but weaved into the story in a believable way and makes her a likeable character that you constantly root for.

Investigation Process- One of the things I like about crime books is working through the clues, interviewing suspects and putting together the pieces to find the killer. I thought the process from start to finish was interesting every step of the way and each secret that added more and more to the puzzle.

Diversity and Discrimination in Modern Times- Like I mentioned above, we see Alyina deal with casual, and sometimes obvious, instances of discrimination because of her character. She deals with this in a very professional way, but still shows the impacts that these words and assumptions have on her and her job. This is such an important issue today and while we have still made progress, there is still a long way to go.

What I Din’t Like

More insight into the motives of the killer- This is probably just a minor point, but I love psychological thrillers and delving into the psyche of the killer. The investigation process to lead to the killer was interesting and had clear steps, but I really wanted more exploration into their motives and what drove them to  this massive step.
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Thank you Netgalley for this ARC.  

This is the 2nd book in this series, following Cold Cuts and featuring Pierra and Baines.  The Judas Flower was a much "meatier" read than Cold Cuts.  While Cold Cuts left me wanting "more",  The Judas Flower not so much.....  I still enjoyed the relationship between Pierra and Baines, it seemed more weighted towards Pierra and should have been better balanced between them, I felt.  The focus on Pierra's personal life kept interrupting the flow of the story for me.  Overall, I found this book to be a somewhat disappointing follow up to Cold Cuts, but not so much that I won't read the next one.
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The second in this series and a much better book from plot through to location.
A police procedural benefitting from the Glasgow setting and revolving around guilt, retribution and lies all need exposing after resurfacing due to a change in fortune.
Told in a few brief days of the investigation; the case is seen as baffling to the reader as the detectives. 
When a recent lottery winner is found murdered in the central city cemetery, his body posed and staged for dramatic events. It does little to provide motive or despite the ‘clues’ and elaborate dressing of the body little progress is made.
Over a few days the leads are followed up and background sought on friends, family and known associates. The police seem to be struggling before a similar murder is committed; now the press can openly criticise and pressure builds especially on lead officer DI Pereira and partner DS Bain.
With the focus on the investigation we learn as much as the police find out and everyone appears to be selective with the truth.
Makes for a real time read and chance to solve it before the police do perhaps. I rarely do.
I liked the increasing pressures on Pereira’s life away from work, if she can ever get Home to switch off, a complex character for sure. I love the way the author plays with pc rules and challenges our values through characters and their insensitive comments.
The market is flooded with such books; locations help and characters win through but the story has to be credible and interesting.
Book 1 was a little humorous but this 2nd novel is deadly serious and tackles a few social issues along the way. An excellent read and worth reading to the very end.
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This is the second in the series featuring DI Aliya Pereira and DS Marc Bain, set in a grim, cold, rain soaked spring in Glasgow. Archie Wilson has the world at his feet, he is enjoying the pleasures that life offers him after winning a £130 million lottery that has set him up for life whilst he lives it up in a hotel. With daughter, Anais suspended from school, Aliya gets the call to get herself to the Necropolis, where a dead body has been discovered, with a metal cross hammered into his skull, artfully arranged on the grave of William Craven d. 1893, with a bunch of Judas flowers in his hands. The murdered man is Archie Wilson, and she has a case that guarantees a media frenzy with the police under heavy pressure and intense scrutiny. As Aliya and Marc dig into the life of Archie, they find a average man who had lived a unspectacular life, making no enemies that they can find.

Aliya's home life is highly pressured with two children, 13 year old Anais, and 4 year old Robin. Aliya walked out of her marriage with Anais to be with her lesbian lover, Lena, with whom she had Robin. She relies on her mother to care for her children whilst she is at work. Emotionally she is still hankering after Lena, who walked out on their relationship. The single Marc is prone to drifting into a fantastical world and does all that he can to protect Aliya from the pressures she is under. The police team eventually begin to piece together that Archie was intending to buy a number of empty churches and to turn them into whatever a community needed, whether it be food banks, drug support etc.. Whilst religion has not been of prime importance to him, it has always been there in the background. The first significant break in the case turns out to letters sent to Archie alluding to accident on a river where a boy dies in a church organised event. Further murders that mirror the killing of Archie take place, raising the stakes immeasurably. Aliya and Marc finds themselves in the midst of a dangerous investigation involving money, religion and revenge.

This is an atmospheric police procedural with a protagonist who is an outsider in the police force in many senses, from being a Asian woman, single, bisexual, and has the epitome of what might be described as the modern family and the messy dynamics that go with it. That she doesn't get enough sleep is a given, but her commitment to the job is paramount. I liked Aliya, even with her human flaws of mooning over her ex, imagining the possibilities of a reconciliation that was never going to happen. Aliya and Marc face a complex investigation, being told numerous lies, until they finally start to uncover the secrets from the past and the greed in the present. This is an enjoyable crime read set in a city I love. Many thanks to Bastei for an ARC.
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When a long-suppressed lust for vengeance meets £130 million, death will follow.

The Necropolis, Glasgow. A man's body, in the shadow of the city's ancient cathedral, sits propped against a gravestone. Held upright by a length of rope around his neck, blood weeping from his eyes, killed by a small metal cross hammered into his skull, the blossom of the Judas tree in his hands.

The Judas Flower is the second book in a gripping and realistic new crime series featuring DI Aliya Pereira and DS Marc Bain. Set in a grim, rain-soaked Glasgow, Pereira & Bain find themselves mired in a toxic mix of money, religion and revenge, as they begin the search for the killer of Archie Wilson, recent lottery winner, keeper of secrets, and now ritualistic murder victim

My thoughts:
At first I thought after reading the first book to this series that I might actually like it and have found another new one to read but after reading this one and thinking about some of the stuff in book one I didn't like , after today I'm not going on with this series.There just some stuff in it that I don't like.With that said I would like to think NetGalley for giving me the opportunity to read and review this series
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The second in the DI Pereira and DS Bain series, this book was even better than the first. This one features the murder of a lottery winner, who has been struggling with what to do with his new found fortune. Found dead in the Glasgow Necropolis, his murder resembles a ritual killing, and when more bodies are found, Pereira and Bain have to discover the link between the victims and a possible motive.
Plenty of twists and turns, and no shortage of suspects, this is a brilliant read. The main characters are much more fleshed out in this book as we learn more about their family lives. As always with Douglas Lindsay books, there is a strong thread of black humour running through the book which I love! Love all his books and I would highly recommend this one.
Thank you to Netgalley and to the publisher for the opportunity to read this as an arc.
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This is an excellent book.  With really great characters and a brilliant plot.  I thoroughly enjoyed every page of this book and would highly recommend it.
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In Glasglow, Scotland murders seem to have a way of happening when least convenient.  DI Aliya Pereira's life is in turmoil, the weather sucks and to boot; she now has not one murder but several that her partner DS Blaine must solve. What is the common thread that ties all the victims together? The first victim is found dead tied to a gravestone with a crucifix rammed into his head. Was he killed for a long past secret, the millions he just won in a lottery or for some unknown reason not yet ascertained? A riveting crime detective mystery with a sharp pair of partners with some highly suspicious culprits from author Douglas Lindsey from be-ebooks was a first-rate thriller.
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