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Cold as the Grave

The Insepctor McLean Series, Book 9
Narrated by: Ian Hanmore
Length: 13 hrs and 3 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (92 ratings)
Regular price: £23.99
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Summary

The ninth book in the Sunday Times best-selling phenomenon that is the Inspector McLean series, from one of Scotland's most celebrated crime writers.  

Her lifeless body is hidden in the dark corner of a basement room, a room which seems to have been left untouched for decades. A room which feels as cold as the grave.   

As a rowdy demonstration makes its slow and vocal way along Edinburgh's Royal Mile, Detective Chief Inspector Tony McLean's team are on stand-by for any trouble. The newly promoted McLean is distracted, inexplicably drawn to a dead-end mews street...and a door, slightly ajar, which leads to this poor girl's final resting place.  

But how long has she been there, in her sleep of death? The answers are far from what McLean or anyone else could expect. The truth far more chilling than a simple cold case....   

The unmissable new thriller in James Oswald's best-selling Inspector McLean series.  

©2019 James Oswald (P)2019 Headline Publishing Group Ltd

Critic reviews

"The new Ian Rankin." (Daily Record)

"Creepy, gritty and gruesome." (Sunday Mirror)

"Crime fiction's next big thing." (Sunday Telegraph)

What members say

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Best One for a While!

Oswald has really outdone himself here. Striking off with one of his trademark creepy prologues, this one starts as it means to go on and delivers everything that we've come to love about this series. The characters, the mysteries, the police work, all woven into a fine atmospheric cloth with the menace of the unknowable supernatural never too far away.

A young girl found dead but her end raises questions that even with the years he has behind him Angus Cadwallader has no answers for. An old enemy and new confront McLean while he tries to grapple with his new, exalted rank and the problems that bedevil his private life.

Ian Hanmore, well who else could it be for this series? He delivers the story in those wonderful velvety Scottish tones of his in his usual smooth, unruffled style, bringing characters, events and places to life with calm assurance.

This could possibly be enjoyed as a standalone but if tempted it would be far better to start this series from the beginning to fully appreciate the backstory and the characters.

This is one of those audiobooks where the combination of author and narrator produces a whole that is greater than the sum of its parts. This really is top quality audio and I think the best one of this series for a while!

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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Another excellent story

Love February because, for the last few years, it's always time for a new Inspector McClain book. Great story roll on book 10!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Cold as the grave

Brilliant book all of the are I really enjoy them. The narrator does a brilliant job looking forward to the next one.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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The Cat

So love to hear that Mrs MCs cat is still alive and well. Another great story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Not the Scotland I know.

The charm of this series is the Scottish setting, but when the writer decides to turn the story into a propaganda piece that in no way represent the history or reality of the country he needs to let us know because it is offensive and defamatory.
James Oswald claims that Scotland has extreme right groups abusing refugees, factories that specialize in the abuse of Syrian refugees and the hole sale rape and mistreatment of Syrian woman by organized crime, never mind the occult sects that also specialize in terrorizing Syrians in the book, to make matters more incredible we have an influx of Christian Syrian Aramaic Speakers according to the writer.
Here are some real numbers or at least official numbers by the Scottish Refugee Council.

There were 23,507 applications in 2013
There was an increase in applications by particular nationalities, including Syria (+681), Eritrea (+649), and Albania (+507)
While Syria saw the largest increase in applications, the highest number of applications came from Pakistan (3,343), Iran (2,417) and Sri Lanka (1,808)
Asylum applications were at their lowest in 2010 (17,916), since a peak in 2002 (84,130)
The estimated number of asylum applications to the 28 EU countries was approximately 435,000 in 2013.

Now you will notice that the information is old (but that is all I could find of official details) as you know too much information makes people educated and then they ask for changes and that no firm numbers are given on Syria; that is because compared to other groups they are statistically not relevant. Scotland did promise to take 2000 refugees and is ahead of its target some were given houses in Scottish Islands, but they are not happy (35-year-old Syrian refugee, speaking under the pseudonym Rasha, said that Bute was “full of old people”, a place where “people come to die”. Her 42-year-old husband Abd (also a false name) worried that this would also happen to him; first despair, then entropy and the slow decline towards the grave. Abd said Scotland was beautiful, the people there had treated him well, he even liked the weather, but: “There is no movement, there is nothing. I’m not bored anymore. I am depressed now. I feel like I have one option now – to die here. Only die here, nothing else.”)
The political propaganda parties feed us is a travesty but for a book to be so out of touch even when fiction is not entertaining or fair to readers. I pay for books to entertain me or educate me, not to be lied to or be brainwashed with some one's version of their so-called political reality.
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Awesome

Wow, love this author, series and narration...never disappoints!!! Fab! I unreservedly recommend all three! Awesome!

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Great book

What can I say, James Oswald has done it again! I so love all his books, modern detective with a slight sprinkle of supernatural, it works! I haven't found another author I enjoy quite as much. Now just got to wait for the next!

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Inspector McLean is back!

The story revolves around a very current theme of illegal immigrants and how other people are taking advantage of their situation. Naturally, a supernatural element complicates the case and an old favourite, Mrs Saifre, turns up as a bad penny. All this makes for a thrilling and sometimes heart-breaking case with vulnerable individuals experiencing evil in human as well as non-human form.

Despite of the dead bodies being scattered around, I always get a ‘feel good’ experience, when listening to Ian Hanmore reading Inspector McLean. To me it is the kind of book which would be perfect to read with a cup of tea in front of the fire. Part of it is because of the narrator, whose voice is comforting to listen to and perfectly suited to the story. Part of it is due to the familiar characters. When I start reading a new McLean book, it is almost like meeting old friends I have not seen for a while. And that includes the ever-present Mrs McCutcheon’s cat...

All in all an excellent book, well worth spending a credit on.

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Thoroughly enjoyed this book

Have listened to all of James Oswald's Inspector Tony McLean series and loved them. The mix of crime and supernatural is right up my street.

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  • Q
  • 12-02-19

As Ever Outstanding

Brilliant tale told well what more can be said
Q
The only problem is the wait between works