The Price of Butcher's Meat


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Reginald Hill, acclaimed English crime writer, was a native of Cumbria and a former resident of Yorkshire, the setting for his novels featuring Superintendent Andy Dalziel and DCI Peter Pascoe. Their appearances won Hill numerous awards, including a CWA Golden Dagger and the Cartier Diamond Dagger Lifetime Achievement Award. The Dalziel and Pascoe stories were also adapted into a hugely popular BBC TV series. Hill died in 2012.


In Hill's solid 23rd Dalziel and Pascoe procedural set in Yorkshire, Det. Supt. Andy Dalziel doesn't see much ofÅhis longtime colleague, DCI Peter Pascoe, because Dalziel is recovering from the serious injuries he suffered in Death Comes for the Fat Man (2007) in the quiet resort of Sandytown. When the charred corpse of wealthy Lady Daphne Denham turns up in a revolving basket that had been used for a pig roast in Sandytown, the two policemen pursue largely independent investigations. Much of the background to Denham's demise comes from e-mails that in spots may puzzle those unfamiliar with e-mail jargon. More deaths follow before Hill offers a final twist that's unlikely to catch experienced genre readers by surprise. The crotchety Dalziel's chafing at the restrictions at the convalescent home where he's staying provides some amusing distraction from the somewhat leisurely crime solving. Newcomers might better start with earlier books in the series. (Nov.) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

Since On Beulah Height, each entry in Hill's Dalziel and Pascoe series has illustrated the British author's ever-growing creativity with language and genre. In this 23rd entry, Dalziel is recovering from injuries sustained in a bombing (Death Comes for the Fat Man) at a convalescent home in the seaside resort of Sandytown. Hill begins the story by having sections narrated by Dalziel, who has been given a voice recorder by his doctor, along with instructions to talk about his feelings and memories of the previous events. Email messages from a woman called Charley to her sister alternate with those passages. Circumstances bring Dalziel and Charley together, and in addition to a number of strange events and questionable characters, murder pays a visit, cueing the arrival of Pascoe and the others to investigate. The plot twists and turns at a dizzying pace. The blend of Dalziel's voice, Charley's grammatically challenged emails, and Hill's familiar, graceful prose and witty dialog all add to the effect. Someone new to the series will want to start with an earlier volume, but fans of Hill's work will certainly enjoy this latest ride.--Beth Lindsay, Washington State Univ. Libs., Pullman Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

One of the best mysteries of the year. . . . It's superb. . . . Treat yourself--the pages move as fast as a pint in Andy's hands."--Cleveland Plain Dealer
"[A] meaty mystery. . . . The Fat Man is back. . . . This is good news indeed. . . . . The Price of Butcher's Meat offers an intellectually satisfying mystery, deep character studies and witty social commentary clothed in elegant, literate prose. Hill's mastery of narrative voice creates vitality out of devices that in lesser hands could be disastrous. . . . [It all] works brilliantly."--Minneapolis Star Tribune
"A literary frolic, Hill has brought the epistolary novel into the 21st century with e-mails and a digital voice recorder. . .. .Final word: Great stuff from one of the greats, and a true must for fans of British crime."--Rocky Mountain News
"Excellent. . . . Hill's perfect pitch (especially for the short, pithy details of dialogue and character description) carries the story through all sorts of villains."--Publishers Weekly
"Few writers in the genre today have Hill's gifts: formidable intelligence, quick humor, compassion, and a prose style that blends elegance and grace."--Donna Leon
"Great stuff from one of the greats, and a true must for fans of British crime."--Rocky Mountain News
"Hill provides his usual deeply satisfying whodunit. . . . Fans of the Fat Man are in for a treat."--Entertainment Weekly
"One of England's most innovative and erudite mystery writers. . . . When it comes to challenging the mind, a Hill novel is better than Sudoku."--Orlando Sentinel
"Reginald Hill is one of the masters of crime fiction, and his customary wit, plotting, and sense of style are every bit as much in evidence in The Price of Butcher's Meat as they are in the previous Dalziel and Pascoe novels."--Peter Robinson, New York Times bestselling author of All the Colors of Darkness
"Reginald Hill, the most playful of genre authors, fancies himself a latter-day Jane Austen in The Price of Butcher's Meat. . . . Hill pulls off the clever literary jest of projecting Austen's unfinished novel Sandition into modern times. . . . [He] proves himself brilliant at recycling 19th-century characters and conventions...while gleefully adding macabre genre touches."--New York Times Book Review
"Reginald Hill's novels are really dances to the music of time, his heroes and villains interconnecting, their stories entwining."--Ian Rankin

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