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All the Hidden Truths
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All the Hidden Truths

Sarjat: DI Birch (Askew) (1)

JäseniäKirja-arvostelujaSuosituimmuussijaKeskimääräinen arvioMaininnat
422459,856 (3.71)13
LONGLISTED FOR THE MCILVANNEY PRIZE SCOTTISH CRIME BOOK OF THE YEAR SHORTLISTED FOR THE MCILVANNEY DEBUT PRIZE '(a) meticulous and compelling novel about the aftermath of a major crime and its effect on the affected families and investigating officers both.' Ian Rankin 'Raw, powerful, compassionate and deeply moving, with page-turning tension to the end. A stunning debut.' Karen Robinson, Sunday Times Crime Club 'Splendid debut... thoughtful and well-written.' Guardian 'You'll be gripped by the unexpected truths that emerge. Compelling.' Marie Claire 'As scarily plausible as it is utterly captivating, this is an absorbing and unforgettable debut.' Heat *** This is a fact: Ryan Summers walked into Three Rivers College and killed thirteen women, then himself. But no one can say why. The question is one that cries out to be answered - by Ryan's mother, Moira; by Ishbel, the mother of Abigail, the first victim; and by DI Helen Birch, put in charge of the case on her first day at her new job. But as the tabloids and the media swarm, as the families' secrets come out, as the world searches for someone to blame... the truth seems to vanish. A stunningly moving novel from an exciting new voice in crime, ALL THE HIDDEN TRUTHS will cause you to question your assumptions about the people you love, and reconsider how the world reacts to tragedy.… (lisätietoja)
Jäsen:Champ88
Teoksen nimi:All the Hidden Truths
Kirjailijat:
Info:Publisher Unknown, 352 pages
Kokoelmat:Oma kirjasto
Arvio (tähdet):
Avainsanoja:to-read

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All the Hidden Truths (tekijä: Claire Askew)

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näyttää 2/2
‘What sense can there be in any of this?’

Centred on the aftermath of a mass shooting at an Edinburgh college, when 20-year-old Ryan Summers kills 13 female students and then himself, Claire Askew’s novel is a brave attempt to explore the private grief of those affected. It focuses on three women: Moira, the mother of the killer; newly-promoted DI Helen Birch, running the investigation; and Ishbel Hodgekiss, mother of the first victim Abigail. The book makes interesting use of different types of source to develop and explore the unfolding story, from Wikipedia pages to transcripts of police interviews to online journalism. This is a useful way to explore both the feelings of those personally caught up in the crime, and also to explore the wider public reaction, as a city and a wider world tries to come to terms with the event and demands answers, explanations. If there is a reason, of someone comes up with an answer as to why Ryan Summers did what he did, then there will be a collective sense of closure. Without it, if this is just a random act, then how can we be sure that this won’t happen again, that we or those we love won’t be the next victims?

This is an interesting take on the events, yes, and the focus on the female perspective and the all-female victims is important. Unfortunately, for me, there are some weaknesses in the way it is handled. The three central characters all have other, private troubles (of course they do) that are exposed as the case develops. Which is fine to an extent, but it seems a little cliched: the emotionally-tortured police officer, the wife who learns her husband is having an affair, the secrets of your own child… And then the character of the investigative reporter Grant Lockley develops into a silly subplot in which his dubious methods are revealed in an entrapment set-up initiated by Ishbel Hodgekiss. I found this strand and the way it played out to be a little far-fetched and seemed totally at odds with the general theme of the book and its message that there are no neat solutions, that questions will always be left unanswered in an event such as the shooting.

However, in general this is a very well written exploration of those involved in an unspeakably violent act, and the tension between private grief and public reaction. It is a book about how little we really know about those we love, and how devastating revelations and the truth can be. Despite my slight misgivings over some parts of the book I found this a worthy attempt to deal with a harrowing subject.

(With thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for an ARC in return for an honest and unbiased review.) ( )
  Alan.M | Apr 16, 2019 |
It’s reminiscent of Montréal’s École polytechnique shooting: one morning at Three Rivers College in Edinburgh, 20-year-old Ryan Summers kills 13 women before killing himself. All the Hidden Truths follows three women involved in the case: DI Helen Birch, who is in charge of the police investigation; Ishbel Hodgekiss, whose daughter Abigail was killed in the shooting; and Moira Summers, the shooter’s mother. We follow them as they grapple with grief and try to find answers to the biggest question of all: why?

This book came to my attention because the author read at Crime in the Spotlight, an initiative at the Bloody Scotland crime festival where new crime authors read a short excerpt from their work as a warm-up to another event at the festival. The premise and the excerpt sounded interesting, so I took a gamble. It was well worth the gamble. Each of the three women is well rounded and compelling, and the narrative is mixed with online columns, tweets and even a Wikipedia article about the shooting—all very effective ways to convey information. (The Wikipedia article especially was a nice touch.)

What struck me most about this story was Moira’s storyline: as the mother of Ryan Summers, she faced a huge amount of vitriol simply for having been his mother. She received death and rape threats, and the journalist character in this story, Grant Lockley, seems to be going out of his way to find her guilty by association, fanning the flames of social media. It made me think of Columbine and wonder how the mothers of the shooters in that case would have fared if it had happened today. The rendering of that dark underbelly of the internet rang all too true and should serve as a warning.

I’d recommend this book if you’re looking for a gripping police-procedural read with well-developed characters. ( )
  rabbitprincess | Jan 11, 2019 |
näyttää 2/2
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Englanninkielinen Wikipedia

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LONGLISTED FOR THE MCILVANNEY PRIZE SCOTTISH CRIME BOOK OF THE YEAR SHORTLISTED FOR THE MCILVANNEY DEBUT PRIZE '(a) meticulous and compelling novel about the aftermath of a major crime and its effect on the affected families and investigating officers both.' Ian Rankin 'Raw, powerful, compassionate and deeply moving, with page-turning tension to the end. A stunning debut.' Karen Robinson, Sunday Times Crime Club 'Splendid debut... thoughtful and well-written.' Guardian 'You'll be gripped by the unexpected truths that emerge. Compelling.' Marie Claire 'As scarily plausible as it is utterly captivating, this is an absorbing and unforgettable debut.' Heat *** This is a fact: Ryan Summers walked into Three Rivers College and killed thirteen women, then himself. But no one can say why. The question is one that cries out to be answered - by Ryan's mother, Moira; by Ishbel, the mother of Abigail, the first victim; and by DI Helen Birch, put in charge of the case on her first day at her new job. But as the tabloids and the media swarm, as the families' secrets come out, as the world searches for someone to blame... the truth seems to vanish. A stunningly moving novel from an exciting new voice in crime, ALL THE HIDDEN TRUTHS will cause you to question your assumptions about the people you love, and reconsider how the world reacts to tragedy.

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