East Berlin, 1975: When Oberleutnant Karin Müller is called to investigate a girl's body at the foot of the wall, she realises this is a death like no other. It seems the girl was trying to escape - but from the West.
The Stasi want her to discover the identity of the girl but assure Müller the case is otherwise closed. This is not a regime that tolerates a curious mind, and Müller doesn't realise that the trail she's following will lead her dangerously close to home....
©2015 David Young (P)2016 W F Howes Ltd
"Deep and dark, this debut is utterly gripping, sucking you in straight from the get go. Fascinating backdrop, well observed characters and a corker of an ending. Superb." (Nikki Owen, author of The Spider in the Corner of the Room)
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"Great start, but fell away"
In the constant search for new angles on the crime thriller, David Young takes us to the Soviet bloc (not new; Arkady Renko strolled into Gorky Park decades ago), but gives it a little more twist with a female detective. The initial set up of a gruesome murder near the Berlin Wall offers some promise, the forensic side of things is logical and carries one into the story, and the labyrinthine organisational politics ring true.
But for me, it all tailed off after that. The narrator's delivery is a little grating: trying a little too hard, but the main issue is the story goes off into a rather meandering and implausible adventure with a main character who, frankly, does not hold one's interest. This is clearly being set up for a "Karin Muller" series, but in this hopelessly cliched and hackneyed genre, there just is not enough here to tempt me back.
"Very good listen"
I enjoyed this but it didn t grip me... there's something not quite right about the way Karin the main character is written... I just didn t care about her enough... didn t know her. Great performance though from narrator
"Crime-spy thriller with dark secrets"
Murder thriller set in the GDR of the 70-ies. Some of it seemed very cliché and sometimes rather unbelievable. However, the eerie threat of everyone being spy and spied upon comes across well.
It was a shame the reader couldn't pronounce the frequent German terms correctly.
"Excellent story with a genuine feel."
Many books set in this genre seem determined to prove their authenticity. This however was a gripping story set in and shaped by the GDR but not dominated by it. I would recommend to anyone.
"Brilliant! Didn't want to put it down!"
I have no previous experience of Julia Barrie, but I will look out for her. Her narration here is faultless.
This is an excellent book, well written, atmospheric and briskly paced. The characters are well drawn and the story highly engaging, set as it is in the dark, compelling world of Soviet East Germany. The author describes this as the first in the series of Oberleutment (Senior Police Detective) Mùller. I very much look forward to the following books. Highly recommended.
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