After almost five years of conflict, London's exhausted inhabitants are living in a world of dereliction. War-weary DI Ted Stratton is no exception, but he cannot help being drawn in by his latest case.
Called on to investigate when a doctor is found dead in Fitzrovia's Middlesex Hospital, Stratton soon realizes that someone involved is not who they appear to be. Meanwhile Jenny, Ted's wife, is working at the local Rest Centre. When a bombed-out woman appears at the centre, declaring that the man claiming to be her husband is an imposter, Jenny thinks that it must be due to shock. The reality, however, is far more dangerous....
Ultimately, for Stratton and Jenny perhaps there is only one thing they can trust: their fear.
©2009 Laura Wilson; (P)2009 Isis Publishing Ltd
The book starts with the suspicious death of a doctor at Middlesex Hospital, shortly followed by the murder of a nurse, but these are rather put on the back burner as we follow the story of the murderer of a second doctor. At the same time a woman is rescued from a bombed house by DI Ted Stratton and is ultimately taken into their home by his wife Jenny. Mrs Ingram's behaviour becomes increasingly irrational and paranoid, refusing to recognise her husband, and the two storylines eventually, and terrifyingly, merge and finally, the original deaths are solved.
Laura Wilson has written well rounded characters some of which surprisingly, given the circumstances, gain one's sympathies.
In Stratton we are treated to the almost unique phenomenon in detective fiction, of a happily married man, the interplay between him and his wife being warm and affectionate.
Sean Barrett is superb in the narration, beautifully conveying Stratton's Devonian accent and those of the other characters and the book is worth listening to for this reason alone.
The author takes you on a mysterious journey ? skilfully leading the reader through two distinct tales. There are very strong central characters, whose individual nature you really get a feel for. DI Ted Stratton?s dry Cockney humour shines out and on occasions; I could not help but laugh out loud. It is a story of mystery, suspense, dogged determination,human weakness & frailty. Would like to see much more of this author and narrator.
This was the first 'Stratton' book I listened to and whilst the books really do stand alone perfectly well, if you listen in the right sequence there is more to be gained from the character and overall plot development.
There is the odd time when the stories do get a little manic but I found my attention was captured from start to finish - helped by the, as always, excellent narration by Sean Barrett (the reason I discovered Stratton in the first place). I await the 5th Laura Wilson audible with anticipation.
I enjoyed every moment ... this author has captured the time and place of London in the 50s in fine detail.
All three books in this series are brilliant and totally memorable.
A very well written book which kept my attention. Never read this author before but really enjoyed this. Again as always the narrator was very good, which in my opinion is key in enjoying any audible book
An Empty Death - weak
I really enjoyed previous book Stratton's War, this second book was very weak in comparison
As usual Sean Barrett was excellent
Interesting and complex story, engaging characters, good writing and Sean Barrett's usual superb performance! Now to download the next in this compelling series!
I like Detective Stratton - a "human" that is good at his job. I have to say that it would be nice, just once, to have a detective that had a superior that supported their actions and believed in their capabilities. However, as in the last book, the details and language of the time were wonderfully depicted. There was also a lovely twist towards the end.
This was the first time listening to a book from this author and I was not disappointed, a very good listen which I found hard to stop listening too. Sean Barrett as the narrator is excellent as usual and was one of the reasons I decided to give this book a go, and I was not disappointed.
Though the plot for this book is great it is somewhat long-winded but my main reason for only giving it a three star is that I do not like how it is read. I find the reader rather flat and most characters voices quite irritating.
"Great story and well read"
This is my first Laura Wilson novel, and it won't be my last. She writes a good gripping tale, which kept me listening. Sean Barrett's narration is superb. He really brings the book and the characters to life. If only all audio books were this good to listen to.
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