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The Distant Echo

Narrated by: Tom Cotcher
Series: Karen Pirie, Book 1
Length: 14 hrs and 11 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (2,491 ratings)

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Summary

On a freezing morning four drunken students stumble upon the body of a woman in the snow. Rosie has been raped, stabbed and left for dead in a cemetery. The only suspects are the four young men now stained with her blood.

Twenty-five years later the police mount a cold-case review of Rosie’s unsolved murder, and the four are still suspects. But when two of them die in suspicious circumstances, it seems that someone is pursuing their own brand of justice....

©2003 Val McDermid (P)2004 Recorded Books Inc

Critic reviews

"A classic.… McDermid pulls out all the stops. Impeccable." ( Guardian)
"A few more sly, old-fashioned whodunits like this and she’ll join the sturdy ranks of the queens of crime, on course to become Dame Val or Baroness McDermid." ( Sunday Times)

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What members say

Average customer ratings

Overall

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Story

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

Absorbing story with good characters

Listening in the kitchen for an hour a day, I gradually got absorbed into the story, the lives and the places. There were several distinct characters, but not too many to become overwhelming. The storyline twists and turns and is ambushed by sudden new events. The narrator was perfect - different voices for different characters. Words quite distinct with a lovely Scottish accent. I looked forward to my listening time each day. I am a new convert to Val McDermid.

23 of 23 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Wonderful novel which is so well narrated

Loved this novel, like most I have read by this very talented author. This one was superbly narrated by Tom Cotcher. I loved the fact that the book, set in Fife where I grew up, was narrated by a Scot. Seemed to make the story all the more believable for me. Loved at the suspense and mystery that this novel creates and, surprisingly, I didn't see the final twist coming which improved this novels enjoyment for me. I have downloaded many of Val McDermid's novels, and almost all I have very much enjoyed. A recommended read.

33 of 34 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Well written, great ending

Would you listen to The Distant Echo again? Why?

I really enjoyed The Distant Echo. The story was interesting and kept me listening late into the night, well past my bedtime! I don't typically re-read (or listen again) to my books, but there would be nothing to keep me from it. I really enjoyed it! The twisted ending blew my socks off!

What did you like best about this story?

The development of the characters from young men in university to grown men with careers, wives, and children. The end of the story was shocking to me, and it's hard to catch me out. I usually have the "whodunit" figured out by the conclusion. I didn't with this book!

What about Tom Cotcher’s performance did you like?

His accent. Otherwise, I didn't really enjoy his performance. I thought his various voices of the main characters were strange--especially Rev."Weird."

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

No, neither. It just kept me on the edge of my seat.

Any additional comments?

I'm going for the next book in the series now.

13 of 13 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Unbelievable

Vintage VM,but there is a big hole in the conclusion, read and you decide,worthwhile
Gripping till the last

19 of 20 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Val McDermid never fails.

Great writing with a very surprising ending. Audio was very good - nice voice - but some of the accents were a bit odd! Overall very enjoyable.

19 of 20 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Ellie
  • Swindon, Wiltshire, United Kingdom
  • 19-10-16

A solid listen.

I really enjoyed this book. The narrator has a lovely tone and it works well with the story. Lots of twists to keep you interested.

17 of 18 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Slow start

Great book. Thought the beginning was a bit strange with only 4 characters but second half if book was fabulous and kept me gripped.

15 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Salter
  • Herefordshire, UK
  • 04-05-17

Very good...if a little predictable..

Any additional comments?

The Distant Echo is, on the whole, a very enjoyable 'whodunit'.
The story centres around a murder that takes place in the 1970's, and the subsequent investigation that ensued. The story is then picked up 25 years later, with many questions still unanswered.
Tom Cotcher turns in a very accomplished performance.
It was a shame I had a good idea of who the perpetrator was fairly early on, but still, McDermind provides us with some great twists and turns along the way.
Highly recommended...

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Fantastic story - narrator could be better!

The story was nothing less than I've come to expect from Val McDermid - fantastic.
Unfortunately the narrator ruined it in parts for me. He would slip into a Scottish accent when speaking for someone American and sometimes not switch from one characters voice to another when he should have - making it slightly confusing to keep up. There were a couple of times where I had to re-listen to bits to work out exactly who was speaking.

I wouldn't let that put me off listening to one of Val McDermid's books read by him again but I feel it needs to be pointed out.

19 of 22 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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BRILLIANT IN EVERY WAY..

McDermid and Cotcher, a writer and narrator combination of exceptional quality. Go buy it now

3 of 3 people found this review helpful