Listen free for 30 days

£7.99/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime

Summary

From the number one international best-selling author of Holy Island and Penshaw.

When the gods made man, they made a weapon....

After uncovering a fresh wave of corruption within the ranks of Northumbria CID, Detective Chief Inspector Ryan was looking forward to an uneventful summer. But, when a young woman is shot dead on the remote army ranges of the Northumberland National Park, Ryan is called in to investigate.   

Meanwhile, violent crimes are being committed across sites of historic importance in the North East, the perpetrator leaving only a graffitied symbol as their calling card. As the body count rises, Ryan and his team must unravel the mystery behind its meaning - before it's too late....

Murder and mystery are peppered with romance and humour in this fast-paced crime whodunnit set amidst the spectacular Northumbrian landscape.        

©2019 Louise Ross (P)2019 Audible, Ltd

Critic reviews

"LJ Ross keeps company with the best mystery writers." (The Times)

“A literary phenomenon.” (Evening Chronicle)

“LJ Ross is the Queen of Kindle.” (Sunday Telegraph)

More from the same

What listeners say about Borderlands: A DCI Ryan Mystery

Average customer ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    625
  • 4 Stars
    151
  • 3 Stars
    69
  • 2 Stars
    24
  • 1 Stars
    12
Performance
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    668
  • 4 Stars
    102
  • 3 Stars
    24
  • 2 Stars
    6
  • 1 Stars
    1
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    542
  • 4 Stars
    130
  • 3 Stars
    78
  • 2 Stars
    31
  • 1 Stars
    19

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Disappointing

It pains me to write this but I think my love affair with DCI Ryan may be over! This book was a disappointment. The two storylines had merit but both seem to have been rushed at the end and left me with unanswered questions. The book is also quite short - the Audible version is just under 5 1/2 hours long.

Ms Ross seems to be churning out a lot if books at the moment (4 Ryan books and 2 in her new series so far this year I believe) and I think this is why the quality of the writing has deteriorated.

On a positive note, the narration is once again done by the wonderful Jonathan Keeble.

22 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Not the Usual Standard

I am an avid fan of LJ Ross and have enjoyed all the DCI Ryan books in the series - until this one. Jonathan Keeble, as usual, is perfect as the narrator but even he cannot lift the book. It is very short and just as you think the story is going to build it fizzles out. Hopefully it's just a blip and any further books in the series are back on track

15 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Too short

Disappointed with the length of content it seems a bit rushed ,not value for money.

14 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Slightly disappointing - swift

Love all of the characters, the story itself was good but felt quite rushed and lacked the content of other books. It seemed to race along differently than the other books.

13 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Hugely disappointing

Unlike other books in this series this was boring and
lack lustre
I feel better to wait and have a full story than a half

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

loved the earlier books...

now we are a few in, they seem very brief and whilst the plots are still good , I didnt find this as convincing and they are way briefer than they were. I preferred the first 5 or so. a shame as I was waiting with excitement for this...a bit of a let down really.

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Popular series that is getting a bit rushed

Whilst I am delighted that new episodes of DCI Ryan's escapades are coming thick and fast, I do think that perhaps the books are now beginning to suffer. All the usual characters are in this instalment and it makes a very good listen - however it is lacking a little substance and seemed to be over almost before it began. This series needs a little more TLC.





9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Disappointing

I have loved the Ryan series but this felt like a short radio play, a not very good one at that. Rushed and short it is not a patch on the standard I have come to expect of LJ Ross, the different stories feel unrelated and tension is lacking.
Such a shame.
Will be returning it as it wasn’t worth a free read let alone a credit.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Truly appalling and a rip off

I will never buy another LJ Ross books. I’ve stuck with them with all except about two but this is just a complete rip-off , it’s more like a short story. Such a far cry from the first one holy Island. There is absolutely no tension or complexity about this book whatsoever. In fact I’m returning it. The author is just making money out of people now for absolutely nothing she ought to be ashamed of herself. It is just like she ran out of interest and just dictated what came into my head in the last hour. She’s got a formula she’s not putting much Effort in anymore and coining the money in 👎🏻👎🏻👎🏻

17 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Disappointing

A disappointing book. Reading by Jonathan Keeble was excellent as always. The plot had potential but the various strands were not very well tied together. Too many loose ends left hanging. I was left with lots of questions about motives etc.
I have followed the DCRyan series from the start and looked forward to this next book. It gave the impression of being written in a hurry.

7 people found this helpful

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Maine Knitter
  • Maine Knitter
  • 20-12-19

Good but not my favorite

I love this series and was thrilled to get a new Ryan book so soon after the last one. But I was a bit disappointed - just a bit - with this one.

First of all, I listened to the audiobook. They are very well done. However, I was immediately confused because the soldier in the beginning of the book sounded just like Frank and I didn’t understand what he was doing there. Took me a while to work that out.

The plot line with the hate crimes seemed a bit undeveloped or thrown in for no real reason. The main plot was great. Disturbing but good.

These characters have long become favorites and the author is one of my “automatic pre-orders.” I look forward to more.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for barbara
  • barbara
  • 14-12-19

Borderlands

I love DCI Ryan books and have read/listened to them all. This one was one of my favorites, just love the excitment, the guessing and the love in between. I truly hope that they carry on for a long time. I would love to see this in a tv series, something to think about. I look forward to the next one releasing soon. The narration is perfect.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for SophiaMarie
  • SophiaMarie
  • 06-11-20

One of my Favorite Ryan books

The narrator was perfect. I read/ listened to many of this series. The ability to use current affairs without dating the story to one particular year is very good. I don't normally listen to a book again for several years but this could be an exception! Keep up the good storytelling LJ Ross!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for B. Rogers
  • B. Rogers
  • 03-11-20

Excellent Story

Another exciting, fast-paced, well-written adventure for DCI Ryan and his team from the Major Crimes Unit. The team is definitely split into different ventures in this book, with Ryan and Phillips working a murder on an Army training base, Lowerson and Yates dealing with a series of hate crimes, and MacKenzie enjoying some off time with her foster daughter, Samantha.

The Army is conducting a live-fire tactical training mission at Otterburn Army Training Ranges in Northumberland. The mission is to find and neutralize two targets – at night using night vision gear. When the first target is sighted, the soldiers training kicks in and they fire upon the target. Except, it isn’t the mechanical target they’ve engaged, it is…was…a live female. How in the world did a lone female end up running through the middle of the moors on a huge Army training base? Before long, Detective Chief Inspector Maxwell Finlay-Ryan and Detective Sergeant Frank Phillips are wending their way along the Northumberland National Park through the Cheviot Hills and into the village of Otterburn – almost at the border with Scotland. Will their investigation discover that it was a horrible, horrible accident when the woman ran directly into a live-fire exercise – or will they find it is something more – something much darker?

There is a terrible explosion and fire at the Central Mosque in Newcastle upon Tyne. It isn’t an accident, and the perpetrators left three large black triangles painted upon the doors along with the words ‘MUSLIMS GO HOME’. Detective Constable Jack Lowerson and Detective Constable Melanie Yates are dispatched to investigate. They know it is definitely a hate crime, but is it an isolated incident and what does that symbol mean? As that symbol turns up at additional sites of vandalism – not just Muslim – but Jewish, black, etc. they know it is the work of a well-organized group. That group is getting bolder, better organized, and more skilled. They have to be stopped before lives are lost. Stopping the group will take not only good investigative skills but the bravery and patriotism of a man who has nothing but that to give.

I listened to the audiobook (Whispersync) version of this book and enjoyed it very much. The narrator has a pleasant voice - but as I have mentioned before, all of the characters sound pretty much alike. Some are softer and breathier, but they all seem to have the same accents. We have a Scot, an Irish, and a Londoner, but they all seem to have the same accent - if not all of the time, most of the time.

I thoroughly enjoyed the story, the mystery, the friendships, and seeing that the goodness in mankind can overcome anything. If you choose to read the book, I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I did.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Tim's Wife Forever (Widowed To Soon)
  • Tim's Wife Forever (Widowed To Soon)
  • 18-06-20

Was this book written under deadline pressure?

This is the 16th book in this series, and by far, the most disappointing. The characters, most of them, lacked depth - which is so unlike the rest of this series. I mean the villains, really? What was the reasoning behind the military bad dude. And speaking of that - the serial. Man. Weak. The other main characters that are in most books, were barely discussed at all. The only plus is same narrator throughout series, and does a spot on job as always. I’m sure he was like....WTH is this?

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Diana Hart 33
  • Diana Hart 33
  • 23-04-20

great short story

I've listened to this entire series and have thoroughly enjoyed it. I'm sad that now I have to wait for the next book (s) to come out. Jonathan Keeble is awesome! it amazes me how many voices he can do, and how well he narrates this series. it has played like a movie in my head. Well written and superbly narrated. win win I can't wait for it to continue!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Luccia Gray
  • Luccia Gray
  • 25-03-20

Fabulous Crime Procedural

I'm gradually reading all of DCI Ryan's novels bt LJ Ross. and this us another brilliant addition. I'm looking forward to reading the next one on my list!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Trish R.
  • Trish R.
  • 06-01-20

Another wonderful addition to the series..


Another great book in the DCI Ryan series. This one involved the death of a girl during a military exercise and a group of
anti-Semites.

As always it was wonderful to see Ryan and Anna, Frank and MacKenzie and their new adopted (almost) daughter Samantha, and Jack and Melanie. It’s like seeing old friends after reading 14 books in this series.

No sex and the F-bomb was used 1 time.

As to the Narration: If it weren’t for Jonathan Keeble this series wouldn’t have been nearly as good.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for angela yardy
  • angela yardy
  • 22-12-19

Short and weak

This is the last book in the series that started out really good but as the series progressed the work became weaker and shorter. The stories became more improbable and the endings totally unbelievable. It seems that the author has stepped onto the treadmill of churning out books - so sad as I said the original stories in the series were really good and well written. Thankfully the performance artist was consistently good.