- source: my local library
- Narrated by: Brian Glover
- Series: Dalziel & Pascoe, Book 13
- Length: 11 hrs and 53 mins
- Unabridged Audiobook
- ISBN: 1-4915-7352-X / 978-1-4915-7352-5 (USA edition)
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
- Release date: 08-29-05
- originally published 1992
1963. It was the year of the Profumo Scandal, the Great Train Robbery, the Kennedy Assassination ...and the Mickledore Hall Murder. The guests at the hall that weekend had included a Tory minister, a CIA officer specializing in dirty tricks, a British diplomat with royal connections, and Cissy Kohler, a young American nanny who had come to England for love. And love kept her in England for nearly 30 years. In jail. For murder.
Detective Superintendent Andrew Dalziel is convinced that Cissy Kohler was -- and is -- guilty. But, investigating further, he soon finds his certainties being eroded. Not a state of affairs Dalziel can put up with for long, particularly when his old mentor's reputation is at stake. Not to mention his own...
The decision by the narrator/publisher to have the Yorkshire accent feature so strongly in this audio book was a brave one, and, for this non-Yorkshire listener, a trying one. I kept wishing they would lapse into "proper" English.
The story begins with the release of Cissy Kohler from prison, her sentence quashed, but the reason for the release is not given. "New evidence at come to light" - at the instigation of an American TV host into whose care Cissy is released.
The conviction obtained 30 years before is under scrutiny, especially the role played by the now-dead Inspector Tallantire, Dalziel's old boss. If Cissy Kohler is innocent, what does that mean in the case of Mickledore who was hanged for the murder?
In the long run the plot was a very complex one with some historical roots. Listening to an audio version probably detracted from my ability to follow the plot, as it is very difficult to check on a point that you didn't quite get the significance of at first. This book also has little quotations at the beginning of each chapter, and their meaning often quite eluded me.
I was struck though by Reginald Hill's at times quirky sense of humour, interesting turn of phrase, an allusions to other literature.
My rating: 4.4
I've also read
A CURE FOR ALL DISEASES
ASKING FOR THE MOON
4.5, CHILD'S PLAY
DEATH OF A DORMOUSE
THE SPY'S WIFE
THE ROAR OF THE BUTTERFLIES
THERE ARE NO GHOSTS IN THE SOVIET UNION
4.8, THE WOODCUTTER