11 January 2015

Review: THIN AIR, Ann Cleeves - audio book

 Synopsis (Audible.com)

A group of old university friends travel to Unst to celebrate the marriage of one of their friends to a Shetlander. But late on the night of the wedding party, one of them, Eleanor, disappears. The following day, Eleanor's friend Polly receives an email. It appears to be a suicide note. And then Eleanor's body is discovered, lying in a small loch close to the cliff edge. 

Detectives Jimmy Perez and Willow Reeves are dispatched to investigate. 

Before she went missing, Eleanor claimed to have seen a ghost. Her interest in a ghost had seemed unhealthy to her friends. But Jimmy and Willow are convinced that there is more to Eleanor's death than they first thought. 

My take

As you'll see from the list below, I love catching up with the Shetland series. There's plenty of mystery in THIN AIR, as well as human interest as Jimmy Perez tries to re-establish his life as a detective in the islands. We learn too a little more about Jimmy's personal life.

In addition, with its island setting THIN AIR is really a variant of locked room mystery, with limited access to the island, and also a limited number of murder suspects: one of the members of the wedding party, or a local resident? And for what motive? Ann Cleeves does a good job with tantalising red herrings.

When a second person is murdered the investigators are convinced there must be a connection between the two murders but who of the incomers knew the second victim or had a reason to kill him? And why would a resident kill both? And is there a connection with "Peerie Lizzie", the little girl from the "big house" drowned decades before by the incoming tide? Jimmy Perez is coming around to the idea that that might have been a murder too, although the nanny was always blamed for neglect, and seemed to take the blame when she committed suicide.

In the long run, the final solution was something that I did not forsee at all.

Kenny Blyth does an excellent job of the narration, enhancing the setting by using a Scottish accent.

My rating: 4.6

I've also reviewed
mini-review RAVEN BLACK - Shetland #1
WHITE NIGHTS - Shetland#2
RED BONES - Shetland #3
5.0, BLUE LIGHTNING - Shetland#4
5.0, DEAD WATER  - Shetland#5
4.3, MURDER IN PARADISE - Palmer-Jones series #3
TELLING TALES (Vera Stanhope) #2
4.8, SILENT VOICES, (Vera Stanhope) #4
5.0, THE GLASS ROOM (Vera Stanhope) #5
4.9, HARBOUR STREET, Ann Cleeves (Vera Stanhope) #6
 4.5, BURIAL OF GHOSTS - stand-alone

 The Shetland Series (as listed on Fantastic Fiction)
1. Raven Black (2006)
2. White Nights (2008)
3. Red Bones (2007)
4. Blue Lightning (2010)
5. Dead Water (2013)
6. Thin Air (2014)

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