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Summary

A parent's worst nightmare is Grace's deadliest case.... 

Roy Grace, creation of the CWA Diamond Dagger award-winning author Peter James, faces his most complex case yet in Dead If You Don't

Kipp Brown, successful businessman and compulsive gambler, is having the worst run of luck of his life. He’s beginning to lose, big style. However, taking his teenage son, Mungo, to their club’s Saturday afternoon football match should have given him a welcome respite, if only for a few hours. But it’s at the stadium where his nightmare begins.

Within minutes of arriving at the game, Kipp bumps into a client. He takes his eye off Mungo for a few moments, and in that time, the boy disappears. Then he gets the terrifying message that someone has his child, and to get him back alive, Kipp will have to pay.

Defying instruction not to contact the police, Kipp reluctantly does just that, and Detective Superintendent Roy Grace is brought in to investigate. At first it seems a straightforward case of kidnap. But rapidly Grace finds himself entering a dark, criminal underbelly of the city, where the rules are different and nothing is what it seems....

This audiobook includes exclusive extracts from Peter James's forthcoming book Absolute Proof, available to pre-order now.

©2018 Peter James (P)2018 Macmillan Digital Audio

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    4 out of 5 stars

Action Man Grace!

The Roy Grace series gets a stripped back approach in this latest episode. The back story has been parked and it's full steam ahead almost from the start. Those back stories for Grace or the other characters have largely been parked in favour of the action. As a result there's less of Grace the person and more adventure. Crucially there are less of the sugar-laden romantic scenes too.

As always there are dastardly villains with a particularly Bond-like aspect to this one. There are outlandish plots and Roy Grace is somehow the man on the spot who has choices between following procedure and doing what he sees as the right thing. Luckily for him he has the ever-watchful Cassian Pugh looking over his shoulder ready to summon him to his office at a moment's notice and irritate the hell out of him while trying to bring Roy down.

The narration by Daniel Weyman is of course absolutely top class and even though the story may follow a formula, it's a good formula making this a five star listen despite the need to suspend belief a little bit at times. The stripped back approach means that the whole thing bounces along at a thoroughly entertaining pace.

One point worth noting is that the book itself is actually only just over 11 hours long, the last hour of this production is given up to an hour of James's next book Absolute Proof which is due out in October. I don't mind these extras of course but I'd like to know when they are coming so that I don't plan to listen to say the last two hours of a book on a long drive only to be cut short. I think it would help if these were advertised.

30 of 32 people found this review helpful

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Thank goodness a return to previous high standard!

I've been disappointed by the recent DCI Grace books as they had ceased to be engaging detective novels as they were slowed down by stuff repeated from previous novels, had over elaborate descriptions of clothes and decor and worst of all lengthy diversions into sugary descriptions of his relationship with new wife, Cleo, that bordered on nauseating. So I’m pleased to report that with the present novel all this has changed and the author has returned to his earlier form and created a pacy story that kept me gripped throughout, though I would have liked Grace’s long-time close colleague, Glenn Branson, to have figured more and Grace’s boss, Cassian Pewe, to be less of an unbelievable caricature.

The narrator does an excellent job

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Another excellent story from Peter James

If you have loved the other Roy Grace stories, you will love this one. It has all the tension and drama we have come to appreciate, only his writing has matured as he has gone along. The writer has the skill of situating his story in a real place: all those who know the Sussex coast between Eastbourne and Worthing will connect strongly with the locations. There are even real people in it: having lived in Shoreham, I know one of them!

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Kept me awake til the small hours!

A really gripping storyline which kept me awake late into the night. I have read several of Peter James's books and thoroughly enjoyed them all. This is the first one I have bought as an audiobook and decided to listen to it in the evenings when I had gone to bed. Big mistake! I just kept going, just another chapter, then another... several very late nights for me this week. The characters are believable and the attention to detail really makes the difference. A great read which I would definitely recommend.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Beautifully written tense plot

Although this is not as personal as the usual Roy Grace stories but it still contains all of the familiar characters. The plot is twisted convoluted and tense. The narration as always is excellent. This book could be read as a standalone story, however to enjoy things fully I recommend the whole Roy Grace series.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Sorry not for me

What a shame I thought this would continue in the Roy grace tradition and about his son family and colleagues . Instead I listened to a story of money wasted on a police operation against euro terrorists . Not at all enjoyable . I kept waiting for it to get better but sadly a complete waste of time . This is the end of the Dead’ series for me , sadly .shame I had to give it 1 .

4 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Not the best Peter james

I mostly listen to books in the car and normally when I get in the car I normally cannot wait to continue to listen to a book. This book (and the more recent Peter James books) does not give me that feel and I am writing this only half way through the book. Does it get any better?

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Very enjoyed

always enjoy this series Peter James has created a very believable character. look forward to the next

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Excellent read

Thoroughly enjoyed this book, although I got a little confused with the characters names, it was definitely worth persevering.

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Best Grace Yet!

Could not wait to get through this.A taught story with many well-drawn characters and a great scene towards the end with humour featuring his nemesis ACC Cassian Pewe!
Fast paced and gripping I liked the real time day and hour chapter headings, although,unless I misheard ,Kipp Brown needing to be up to take Mungo to school on August 11th suggested very different holidays at Brighton College!
Not sure how Peter James can top this as it will have to be very good.
A word of praise for Daniel Weyman, his voice characterisations and delivery enhanced the drama no end.

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  • Oh, Ace One
  • 07-08-18

Narrator made listening difficult

I always wait impatiently for Peter James books to come out each year, and if the hold list is too long at the library, I’ll use an audible credit to get hear/read it sooner.
I didn’t notice this previously, but the way this narrator voices women’s dialogue made me cringe. Every woman in the book was read as high pitched and whiny, and I lost any sympathy I had for these characters, including the mother of an abducted child.
I didn’t feel the story was Peter James’s best, either. I like his books because the characters are comfortable old friends with their own idiosyncrasies. This time around, I found myself getting impatient with the tyrannical boss, the inappropriate sergeant, and the heroics of Roy Grace. Again, the narrator may have been partially responsible, but I also think that James may be tiring of his own creation. Roy Grace has outgrown Brighton, but has nowhere else to go.
All in all, I think I’ll wait the extra month or two for the library copy of his next release.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful