Cover Image: Cruel as the Grave

Cruel as the Grave

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

I stumbled across the Bill Slider series about a year ago and read them all in quick succession.  I love the detective element but also the fact that the characters are rounded.  They have lives outwith the police station of which we see more or less depending on their role.  And they develop.  So when I saw that there was to be an addition to the series I was very happy.  And I remained happy after reading it..  If I'm completely honest, I don't think that the crime was the hardest the team has ever had to solve but it was a bit of a relief that it was just a straightforward murder investigation with no political ramifications.  And some of the bit players (in terms of the series as a whole) were particularly strong characters.  I hope there's still more to come.
Was this review helpful?
This was an absolutely extraordinary book which once I started reading the first few pages I just could not put down until the last gripping paragraph.

The murder of a personal fitness trainer draws DCI Bill Slider and his team into a baffling investigation where nothing is as it first appears. Fitness trainer Erik Lingoss is found dead in his west London flat, his head smashed by one of his own dumbbells. His heartlessly-dumped girlfriend, blood on her clothes and hands, is the prime suspect. She had means, opportunity, and motive. But is the case as clear-cut as it seems? Handsome Erik Lingoss had clients in high places; and he seemed to engender powerful emotions. If it was a crime of passion, there was plenty of that to go around: love strong as death, jealousy cruel as the grave. Who did he let in to his flat that evening? Where is his missing mobile phone? Why is seven hundred pounds in cash stuffed under his pillow? The deeper Slider and his team dig, the clearer it becomes there's far more to this case than meets the eye. 

This is the 22nd book in this series but there are four omnibus editions as well for newer readers whom want to read the earlier books more economically.
This book was absolutely a delight to read and I always look forward to reading the authors other books.   But the author does not only write detective stories,  she has also written 35 books in her Morland Dynasty saga together with six in her “War At Home” series and about 35 other books in romance, historical, fantasy and contemporary genres. She is also fond of writing letters to "The Daily Telegraph" on a number of current events that she likes to comment on and these are usually very insightful as are the regular letters from another author Frederick Forsyth.  

The author always writes these very interesting stories and police procedurals mainly based around Kensington and the west end of London describe police officers and their families that the regular reader gets to know very familiarly. Very strongly recommended
Was this review helpful?
Thank you Severn House for the pleasure of reading this book.  I have read all the books in the series and cannot praise enough the storylines and humour in each publication.

 The plot is about a handsome male fitness trainer who is murdered in his apartment.  There are
several suspects but one stands out more than the others. It is a quite a story how DCI Bill Slider and his team determine the murderer.  

Highly recommend.
Was this review helpful?
256 pages

5 stars

Erik, with a “k,” Lingoss was brutally beaten about the head in his apartment. DCI Bill Slider and DS Atherton respond to the call. A witness or suspect to the murder was also at the scene. A young woman who worked at the same gym as Lingoss. She was dumped the previous evening by Lingoss, is devastated and makes a good suspect. But all who know her don't believe that she is capable of such an act. She is very young and very naive. 

Slider, Atherton and the rest of the team begin their investigation with the usual interviews: friends, acquaintances, work place and neighbors. The size of the investigation grows, but few useful leads are found. After several false starts, the police finally gain some traction. A theory is tested and proves to be sound. 

I suspected the person who was found to be the murderer about three-fourths of the way through the book, but I was gratified to see that I was right. 

Ms. Harrod-Eagles lays out the story in a linear and logical way. Her transitions are seamless. There was one little slip in the plotting, but now I can't recall what it was, so no big deal. When interviewed the characters' reactions are interesting and true-to-life. The bluster and indignation of a few and the calm acceptance of others was how people really do react in these situations. Who knows how I would act when confronted by the police? Eeek! I like Slider's compassion for the people he speaks to and I love Atherton's erudition! He comes out with some real winners. And when the other cops misunderstand him – mostly on purpose I think – it is funny. I truly like Ms. Harrod-Eagles' writing and look very much forward to reading the next Slider/Atherton novel. 

I want to thank NetGalley and Seven House for forwarding to me a copy of this very good book for me to read, enjoy and review.
Was this review helpful?
At first I thought there were a lot of typos in this book; narcissus in place of narcissist for example but realise it was part of the humour in what is a well written, funny book. Very much a procedural with a lot of words to solve a single murder.
Was this review helpful?
I received a copy of this novel from the publisher via NetGalley.

It was great to return to the Slider/Atherton crime solving duo. The rest of the team, with their distinct characters were all still there too. I enjoy the humour, and I thought the first half of the book was extremely good: fast paced and tightly plotted. After that I felt it got a little bogged down and there were an awful lot of characters to keep straight. I didn't ever get much of a sense of what the victim was really like, but nevertheless, this was a good read with a satisfying resolution.
Was this review helpful?
Thank you NetGalley and Severn House for the eARC.
As usual, I hated having to leave the world of Slider, Atherton, his team and of course Joanna.  I love this series so much and I'm always amazed at how consistently great the books are, even after so many of them.
This one features the murder of a popular personal trainer, who bedazzled women with his extreme good looks and was not shy about sharing them among many.
The back and forth between Slider and Atherton always puts a smile on my face and the end of the case was excellent.  But it was the last chapter that really made me tear up and smile at the same time.  Wonderful book, highly recommended 5+++ read!
Was this review helpful?