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The Dead Hour
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A domestic dispute turns dark and deadly for journalist Paddy Meehan in the second novel of Denise Mina's acclaimed series

About the Author

Denise Mina was an academic before she came to crime writing- she taught criminology while studying for a PhD. Her debut novel, Garnethill, won the John Creasy Dagger and a stand alone novel, Sanctum, followed before she began the Paddy Meehan series. In between novels she has babies, writes articles and short stories, a play (Ida Tamson) and has recently finished a run as the writer of 'Hellblazer' for DC Comics. Her first graphic novel A Sickness in the Family is due out in 2007. To fit it all in she has given up changing out of her pyjamas, eating cooked food and depilitation.

Reviews

On her rounds as a crime reporter for the Scottish Daily News, Paddy Meehan visits the scene of a disturbance at a home in Beardsden, a wealthy suburb of Glasgow. There she finds an attractive couple who appear to be in the midst of a domestic dispute. The police give the couple a warning and, as they are leaving, the man presses a 50-pound note into Paddy's hand and asks her to keep the matter out of the paper. The next morning Paddy reads in the paper that the woman, a lawyer and political activist, has been murdered. The man was not her husband. Suddenly, Paddy has to confront the class prejudices that allowed her to leave another woman in a dangerous situation and decide what to do about the money she accepted from the murderer. Despite its intriguing premise, Mina's (Deception) crime plot never picks up much momentum, but Paddy Meehan is a refreshingly down-to-earth character, and her travails in the nightworld of Glasgow ultimately make for a more compelling story than the murder she tries to solve. Readers never get to know the murder victim very well, and the details of her death unfold rather anticlimactically. Recommended. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 3/15/06.] Jane la Plante, Minot State Univ. Lib., ND Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Set in Glasgow in 1984, Mina's riveting second thriller to feature Patricia "Paddy" Meehan (after 2005's A Field of Blood) opens with the 21-year-old crime reporter for the Scottish Daily News following up a late-night disturbance complaint at a Victorian villa in the posh suburb of Bearsden. The tall, attractive man at the door assures Paddy, as he had the police, that the incident won't happen again. Behind him is a blond woman with a bloody face-Vhari Burnett, a well-respected political activist and lawyer. The man bribes Paddy, as he had the police, to keep quiet. The next day the news of Vhari's murder dismays the normally scrupulous Paddy. When a suicide is fished out of the river, Paddy begins to connect the two deaths. Meanwhile, Vhari's cokehead sister, Kate, is on the run from Vhari's killer, and Mina skillfully alternates Kate's desperate point-of-view with that of Paddy, who's determined to do the right thing and bag the story. Hopefully, this won't be the last breathless adventure for one of the most entertaining reporter sleuths in recent crime fiction. 6-city author tour. (July) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

"Mina never fails to engage the reader, taking crime fiction into further territory to challenge and extend our perceptions...Puts Mina into the class of the serious psychological novelist."
-"Scotland on Sunday
""Scotland has found itself a new Ian Rankin."
-"The Times"
"
"Praise for Denise Mina:
"One of the most exciting writers to have emerged in Britain for years."
-Ian Rankin
"The Crown Princess of Crime."
-Val McDermid
"Field of Blood is more challenging than any crime novel, more engaging than any social commentary, and way more inspiring, inventive and downright chilling than any thriller."
-Manda Scott
" Mina never fails to engage the reader, taking crime fiction into further territory to challenge and extend our perceptions... Puts Mina into the class of the serious psychological novelist."
- "Scotland on Sunday
"" Scotland has found itself a new Ian Rankin."
- "The Times"
"
"Praise for Denise Mina:
" One of the most exciting writers to have emerged in Britain for years."
- Ian Rankin
" The Crown Princess of Crime."
- Val McDermid
" Field of Blood is more challenging than any crime novel, more engaging than any social commentary, and way more inspiring, inventive and downright chilling than any thriller."
- Manda Scott

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