The Dead Hour
- Orion Publishing Co
- Publication Date:
- 16 February 2012
- Crime, Thrillers and Mystery
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Protagonist: 21-year-old journalist Paddy MeehanSetting: Glasgow, Scotland in 1984Series: #2First Line: Paddy Meehan was comfortable in the back of the car.The Dead Hour opens with Paddy Meehan, a crime reporter for the Scottish Daily News following up a late-night disturbance complaint in the posh suburb of Bearsden. The handsome man at the door assures Paddy (as he had the police) that the incident won't happen again. Behind him is a blond woman with a bloody face, Vhari Burnett, a well-respected lawyer. The man bribes Paddy (as he had the police) to keep quiet. The next day the news of Vhari's murder dismays Paddy. When a suicide is fished out of the river, Paddy begins to think the two deaths might be connected. The story alternates between the viewpoint of Paddy and that of Vhari's sister Kate, a cocaine addict.I think Paddy is one of the best characters in current fiction. She lives in an area of Glasgow that has high unemployment, and she's seen more than her share of violent domestics. Her mother wants her married. Paddy wants something better for herself. In so many ways, Paddy is an "Every Woman" and it would be almost impossible not to root for her...or to want to shake her when she does something stupid. The Dead Hour ends with such a cliffhanger that it will be extremely difficult for me to keep my hands off the next book.
I STILL love Paddy!The plot's fine, the crime's interesting, the 80s setting is a lot of fun, and I'm getting a little education about that era's recession and how it affected Scotland. BUT it's all about Paddy for me. DM is pure genius - the best ever - at conveying the heart of this character poignantly, compellingly, achingly - and sparingly.In particular, the scene where paddy first gets it on with the married guy - if that isn't the truest depiction of the complicated emotions surrounding sex, I don't know what is.DM is one of my favorite authors, male or female. But she writes women like no one else I've seen.
Denise Mina has written one of the best crime novels I've read in a long time. Her characters jump out of the pages at the investigation of a murder of a mysterious blonde woman -- they're real, they're so human that you want to meet them for a cup of coffee! One down, two to go in this series!
This is the second in her mystery series featuring crime reporter Paddy Meehan. Paddy has been promoted from her former go-fer position at the Scottish Daily News, although she is now the only person at her house in the Eastern Star housing estate who is “earning.” As usual in these books, Paddy gets involved in, and solves for the “polis,” a heinous murder. Heather O’Neill, who has a perfect Glaswegian accent, read this book to me on compact disc. Hearing this book read in the lilting cadences of a Scotch burr made the experience even more enjoyable and exciting to me than reading it.
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