In Death Wore White, motorists are diverted one winter evening by detour signs from the highway onto the Siberia Belt, where they are blocked by a tree across the roadway. Sarah, in the second car stopped on Siberia Belt, is frantic to pick up her daughter Jillie from school.
The elderly man in the Corsa behind her suffers a heart attack. The driver of the first truck has been murdered. Shaw and Valentine believe the deaths are not coincidental, and carefully probe the connections between all the involved parties, while a forensic expert examines all the evidence. I recommend Death Wore White to readers who enjoy police procedurals with a wealth of forensic evidence, a complicated plot, and a large cast of characters.
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Frequent references to UK-specific terms had me relying on Wikipedia to fully understand the context. May 25, Michael rated it really liked it Shelves: read-in , police-procedural , series , mystery , reviewed. Inspector Peter Shaw and veteran officer, Det. George Valentine are sent to the Norfolk, shore to look for containers of toxic waste that police in England suspect are being dumped in that location.
Death Wore White by Jim Kelly (Paperback, 2009)
While there, the officers discover a dead body in a raft, washing up against the shore. The weather is terrible and blizzard conditions prevail.
Not far away, someone has placed a sign on the main road that due to flooding, motorists should detour to the coastal road. A tree has been cut and Det. A tree has been cut and is across that road and eight cars are trapped. In addition, someone has killed the driver of the first car in line, Harvey Ellis. When Shaw and Valentine get to the scene, what perplexes them is that, although Ellis has been killed in a violent manner, there are no footprints in the snow. Shaw followed his father, Jack, into the police department.
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He is currently the youngest detective inspector on the job. He's teamed with the no nonsense, veteran, George Valentine. What adds possible tension between the partners is that Valentine had been Peter's father's old partner. Twelve years prior, Jack Shaw and Valentine made a mistake with the evidence on a case. The judge was very critical of the manner in which the case was handled, and it ended Shaw's career.
Now Peter surprises Valentine asking him to tell him about the case and letting him know that he wants to look into it. This is a well done novel a variation of the locked door mystery. The author's literary style was a pleasure to read and Shaw and Valentine are a fine team, the crusty old vet, under the supervision of the young Chief Inspector, who has a talent for forensics and in dealing with suspects. My dilemma was that I wanted to find out how the story came out but the book was so fine, I didn't want it to end. The blurb on the cover from the NY Times Book Review pulled me in: "Ever since the days of Agatha Christie, the great divide in the British detective story has been between plot and character When police arrive, the driver of the lead car is found dead, a chisel in his left The blurb on the cover from the NY Times Book Review pulled me in: "Ever since the days of Agatha Christie, the great divide in the British detective story has been between plot and character When police arrive, the driver of the lead car is found dead, a chisel in his left eye.
How could the killer have committed the murder without being seen by the other stranded motorists, and without leaving a single footprint in the snow? Characters are well-drawn inside an interesting setting. I got a little impatient toward the end with the secondary plot line, just wanting the main crime explained, so my only criticism is that I thought it could have been a little shorter than pages. Otherwise, a solid four stars for me, and I will certainly follow this series.
Jul 05, Kathy rated it it was ok. Slow reading. Starred reviews for this author from Booklist, Publishers Weekly and Kirkus. Perhpas only Kirkus for this book.
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Police procedural - interesting enough main character, Peter Shaw, but very convoluted plot of murder on stranded coastal road with lots of characters, subplot of detective and new partner George Valentine, under a cloud involving detective Shaw's father. They unsuccessfully tried to get new info and open the old case; at end Peter will pursue on his own.
Guess there's Slow reading. Guess there's another book coming! Dec 09, Jyv rated it it was ok Shelves: fiction , mystery. I found the style of writing ponderous. There was some unusual use of words for descriptions that seemed unnecessary eg "pus-coloured" headlights. I didn't care about any of the characters nor was I really bothered about the outcome. I just wanted to finish it so I could start something hopefully more enjoyable.
Mar 10, Carolyn rated it it was ok. Rather contrived and stuffed with plot twists just for the sake of it. Not especially well-written, with rather bizarre metaphors, and the characters were rather one-dimensional. Perhaps the creation of detectives of the complexity and depth of Wallander, Rebus and above all, Erlendur has spoiled my appreciation of anything less. I found Shaw decidedly shallow and poorly drawn. Dec 12, Anisa Novaniarti rated it really liked it. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This is the first series of 5 series.
The genre of this novel is crime-detective. During this mishap, someone kills Harvey Ellis, the driver nearest the obstruction, with a chisel blow to the eye and manages to escape without leaving traces in the snow. I did enjoy the writing style of Death Wore White and the main characters were interesting enough for me to want to read more about them.
Dec 29, Carol rated it liked it. The crime scene is melting, the murderer has vanished, the witnesses are dropping At 5. This is the first novel in this series so I forgave it for being rather slow and having a improbable plot boarding on down right kooky. The characters of Shaw and Valentine are really good and they make a good team. The crusty old vet under the supervision of the young Chief Inspector who has a talent for forensics and in dealing with suspects are actually what carried this novel off and earned it the 3. Like all of Jim Kelly's novels that I have read It's almost like he has forgotten that he's mentioned this piece of evidence or advise at least five times already.
I loved the idea of the plot. It was almost like a closed-door mystery. There was seemingly no way it could have happened but yet it did kind of thing. Unfortunately I read this in fits and starts.
Death Wore White
I was able to keep track of the action, but not all of the characters. This is essentially a locked room mystery, as the murder takes place at a detour road where the road is blocked by a fallen tree and a dead body in the lead vehicle. There are no footprints around the vehicle yet the driver is impaled in the eye with a chisel. At the same time there is another dead body approaching from the waterfront. The question was were they related or separate Unfortunately I read this in fits and starts. The question was were they related or separate incidents?
And then there was the body out on the island, buried up to the head in the sand. Shaw and Valentine do not believe in coincidence, so they try to connect the dots with interviews and forensics. The plotting was excellent but hard to follow at times. I kept having to stop and determine how each of the characters fit into the story. There were witness statements that just did not fit the facts, and for a good reason.
I selected this author for my reading group this month. I borrowed a copy from the public library. May 30, Reggie Billingsworth rated it it was amazing. Jim Kelly continues as a marvel at precise and pithy imagery, on top of the fascinating plots and unique base set of characters with which he peoples his Norfolk broads universe. This title proved my belief in just letting a master do what he does best, even if you have no clue how the hell the writer is going to get out of the self-constructed conundrum.
Related Death Wore White (DI Peter Shaw & DS George Valentine series Book 1)
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