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Disappointing For starters, the book was way too long and the build up was extremely slow Elizabeth George has enjoyed a successful career, with good reason mostly, and she seems to have reached the point where people are afraid to edit her It happens to a lot of authors, and it s unfortunate Even the best authors need editors, especially after they ve started believing their own hype.There were also too many confusing subplots I kept forgetting which pairs were brother and sister and which Disappointing For starters, the book was way too long and the build up was extremely slow Elizabeth George has enjoyed a successful career, with good reason mostly, and she seems to have reached the point where people are afraid to edit her It happens to a lot of authors, and it s unfortunate Even the best authors need editors, especially after they ve started believing their own hype.There were also too many confusing subplots I kept forgetting which pairs were brother and sister and which were boyfriend and girlfriend, whose father was who, whose father owned the surfing store and whose father was building the extreme sports place and which of them forbade his son to surf, when that son was the murder victim but which family did he come from again There was one subplot in particular which took up a lot of room and was, in my view, completely unnecessary not to mention boring Besides this, much of the book was unrealistic and required just a bit too much suspension of disbelief Inspector Lynley, grieving for his lost wife and extremely vulnerable, is suddenly asked rather, compelled to participate in a murder investigation, even though he handed in his badge a while back, even though it s not his city, even though his capacity in the investigation is not an official one and he doesn t seem to be on the payroll so his actual level of responsibility is unclear, even though there are growing concerns about his ability to maintain balance in light of his recent loss Huh Is this in fact how police forces operate In a murder investigation I realize it was a small town with an understaffed police force, but the whole thing seemed just a bit contrived a way to get Lynley into the picture and create dramatic conflict around his actions and emotional state at the same time In addition to being ludicrous in many respects, the plot was even repetitive with all the sociopathic nymphomaniac older women coupling with hormonally driven younger men, all of whom typified lazy, unmotivated, immature adolescents I ve always enjoyed Elizabeth George s Lynley Havers series for its psychological complexity and exploration of characters and relationships Here, I felt she tried for that but didn t quite achieve it You have this divorced couple where the husband is dying to take her back and she s resisting for bizarre reasons, including an apparently baseless assumption that he spends all his time having cheap affairs with beautiful younger women You have this other middle aged couple, married at least 20 years, where the woman has betrayed him repeatedly on a variety of levels and he has chosen to remain with her, with continuing lust lust which is farsuited to 20 year old newlyweds than to middle aged people married 20 years for her as the only apparent factor in this decision Finally, one of the murder suspects is hiding her past in a way that appears incriminating But when that past is finally revealed, it s not only pretty strange we re talking The Glass Castle here but unclear why she would risk incriminating herself simply because she wants to hide her Glass Castle origins Sigh Even Barbara Havers, my favorite Elizabeth George character, doesn t really figure into the story untilthan halfway through and seems only faintly her snappy self.I ve been a fan of the series, and I may yet pick up the next one if she writes it But this one really wasn t worth the 720 pages I haven t read any Elizabeth George in years It took me a little while into this to realize I had read it some time ago Still, it was worth another read to catch up with the characters I plan to embark on a catch up with this series. Okay, I think we ve got the train back on track We have Lynley, we have Havers Whew This should go without saying, but after the dreck that was What Came Before He Shot Her , you cannot take these things for granted.Other than the presence of Lynley and Havers, though, I m not that crazy about this installment I didn t like any of the other secondary characters, and actively disliked most of them The few that I did like eventually ended up annoying me too And, after the first third of Okay, I think we ve got the train back on track We have Lynley, we have Havers Whew This should go without saying, but after the dreck that was What Came Before He Shot Her , you cannot take these things for granted.Other than the presence of Lynley and Havers, though, I m not that crazy about this installment I didn t like any of the other secondary characters, and actively disliked most of them The few that I did like eventually ended up annoying me too And, after the first third of the book , even the characters names bugged me Dellen, Jago, Santo do you suppose Elizabeth George ran some sort of contest Name the Character and ended up with this baffling assortment but was forced by contract to use them I read the whole thing, but it took me three weeks, which is usual for E George I usually can t put her novels down, you know And to be very honest, I think my antipathy is entirely personal I m still aggrieved at George for killing off Helen , pointlessly, I might add and then forcing me, her loyal reader, to wade through the joyless mulch of What Came Before Elizabeth George OWES me, and this one didn t cover it My theory is that George wrote herself into a corner what drama comes from a happily married protagonist with a baby on the way None, that s what So how to inject maximum drama with minimum effort Murder, of course With the added pathos of a pregnant, beloved victim Man, it still annoys me Not so much that Helen is dead, but that I think it was a cheap trick, authorial ly speaking Isn t Elizabeth George terrific I love her books and just wish she s crank them outregularly and quickly It isn t as if the woman isn t productive, either It s just that fans want , alwaysOf course then they wouldn t be the same books, would they Here we have DS Lynley mourning the loss of his wife Lynley takes mourning very, very seriously He s been wandering the coast of Cornwall for weeks, living rough and not especially well Just walking Naturally he finds a body I Isn t Elizabeth George terrific I love her books and just wish she s crank them outregularly and quickly It isn t as if the woman isn t productive, either It s just that fans want , alwaysOf course then they wouldn t be the same books, would they Here we have DS Lynley mourning the loss of his wife Lynley takes mourning very, very seriously He s been wandering the coast of Cornwall for weeks, living rough and not especially well Just walking Naturally he finds a body It seems a young climber has fallen from a cliff Accident Or something else Well, this is Elizabeth George, so you can guess The local police range from the cold, hard Bea Hannaford to her bumbling officers There are too few investigators with too little experience, and Hannaford s unwillingness to listen to what anyone has to say does not help matters There are many plot lines, but George keeps them from tangling up, so a reader is intrigued rather than lost such is her skill with plot And this is a great mystery Of course she sends a reader off on false leads, convincing false leads And even though you know that at least some of them must be false, they are part of such a rich story that you almost forget that basic of mystery fiction This is a feast of friendship, relationship, family, small town, and emotional intrigues As for character, this might be her best yet George really gets a reader inside the heads of her characters in a way few can such is her art Perhaps the best example of this is early on, while Lynley is walking the coast and as he slowly, very slowly, emerges into the world Here George manages to convey that he is so lost in grief as to be barely there inside his head It s an amazingly eloquent bit of writing Someone just liked this review, leading me to reread it This reminded me of how much I liked the book Now I must re read the book This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here Thomas Lynley, mired deeply in his grief, comes across the body of a young man at the bottom of a cliff during his hike along the South West Coastal Trail Soon enough, he gets involved in the investigation into the boy s death, which, of course, has been determined to be a murder.Enter Ben and Kerra and Daidre and Santo and Dellen and Aldara and Jago and Selevan and Madlyn and Max and Lew and Cadan and Bea and Ray and Pete and Alan and Will and Tammy and yes, Sergeant Havers, too.Phew.The bigge Thomas Lynley, mired deeply in his grief, comes across the body of a young man at the bottom of a cliff during his hike along the South West Coastal Trail Soon enough, he gets involved in the investigation into the boy s death, which, of course, has been determined to be a murder.Enter Ben and Kerra and Daidre and Santo and Dellen and Aldara and Jago and Selevan and Madlyn and Max and Lew and Cadan and Bea and Ray and Pete and Alan and Will and Tammy and yes, Sergeant Havers, too.Phew.The biggest problem I found with this book is, as you may have guessed, there are too many characters Not all of them are necessary to the plot and many of them are simply there to help Tommy find his way back to his life To me, Elizabeth George was trying to do too many things at once.The story was good enough a young man killed, but not for the reason you think, with suspects aplenty Who did it Was it the scorned girlfriend Her dad The boy s dad His sister The young man who had a thing for the boy s girlfriend They all had a reason to kill him, of course.The local Inspector is a hard woman why are all female cops borderline masculine, huh with personal issues that she allows to cloud her judgment She s in charge and wants things done her way or no way at all She forces Lynley to become involved in the investigation even though he tries to explain he s not a cop, not any at least He s given it up She, of course, wants none of it, because she plans to use him to get close to the woman she considers the prime suspect.In the end, the killer is revealed, but there is no real justice Tommy is still trying to find a reason to go on, but there are hopeful signs of life He promises Havers he ll make his way back to London after he s finished his journey up the Cornish coast.When I saw this book at the store, I was so excited I had been dying to see what happened to Tommy after the deaths of his wife and son And while it was great to see Tommy again and heartwrenching to discover what he s been going through, the book failed to reach my expectations.However, to be fair to Ms George, those expectations were exceedingly high and probably unattainable anyway.A good book, not a great one, but I still can t wait for the next installment of this terrific series Finished reading August 30th 2016DNF at page 80 view spoiler WARNING upopopular opinion ahead Honestly, I ve tried I think this is only the second or third book I have ever DNFed and I still feel a bit guilty for doing so I must have started reading Careless In Red at least four or five times before over the last two years, but I just can t bring myself to keep reading There are too many storylines and the pace is slower than a sleeping snail On top of that the descriptions ar Finished reading August 30th 2016DNF at page 80 view spoiler WARNING upopopular opinion ahead Honestly, I ve tried I think this is only the second or third book I have ever DNFed and I still feel a bit guilty for doing so I must have started reading Careless In Red at least four or five times before over the last two years, but I just can t bring myself to keep reading There are too many storylines and the pace is slower than a sleeping snail On top of that the descriptions are superlong, dull and the story itself just doesn t grab my attention either It s honestly a shame because this book belongs to one of my favorite genres And I m aware Careless In Red is actually book nr 15 in a series, but after this sample I don t think I want to read the first book after all I know a lot of people seem to enjoy this series, but it definitely isn t for me.Detective Superintendent Thomas Lynley retreated to Cornwall after his wife was murdered There he spends six solitary weeks hiking the coastline, but he cannot seem to escape his memories On the forty third day of his walk, Lynley discovers the body of a young man who seems to have fallen to his death He has no choice but to abandon his solitary life and has to ask for reinforcements While the closest town seems to be an unlikely place for murder, it soon becomes clear that a killer is indeed at work And this time, Lynley is not a detective but a witness, and even a possible suspectI always enjoy reading a good mystery detective story, but somehow I never managed to read but a few pages at the time of this fifteenth book in the Inspector Lynley series The pace is so slow and the descriptions are so long that it s really hard to stay focused, and I also found that it had way too many storylines going on That said, I ve only managed to read the first 80 pages, so things might improve later on I guess I will never know hide spoiler P.S Findof my reviews here. Yikes This was bad I don t even know what else to say I meanyou have Lynley wanting a sexual relationship or something with a woman who he meets notthan 2 months after his wife was murdered Also, what was George even thinking with fridging Helen The murder story line was interesting, but the resolution was a freaking let down I don t even know what else to say here This book felt like a waste of time Careless in Red finds Thomas Lynley walking in Cornwall He has been on his o Yikes This was bad I don t even know what else to say I meanyou have Lynley wanting a sexual relationship or something with a woman who he meets notthan 2 months after his wife was murdered Also, what was George even thinking with fridging Helen The murder story line was interesting, but the resolution was a freaking let down I don t even know what else to say here This book felt like a waste of time Careless in Red finds Thomas Lynley walking in Cornwall He has been on his own for 6 weeks at the start of this story trying to outrun memories of his dead wife When he comes to a cliff he sees a body and finds himself thrust in the middle of a murder investigation The local investigator calls on Lynley to investigate a woman who is hiding something Lynley eventually calls up Havers who is sent to Cornwall to help, but to also bring Lynley back to New Scotland Yard.I got nothing on Lynley He s like a shadow of his former self and his whatever it was with the vet made zero sense and actually made me despise him Havers was great and the only reason why I gave this 1 star.The local investigator had a whole backstory that I did not care about at all So did the vet and it made zero sense when we get to her reveal It was so dumb and I just threw up my hands I can t say much about the other people in this story, the lot of them had a lot of issues and there s not really anyone that I ended up liking At one point I wondered how everyone in this story was so miserable and unhappy Some of the characters, read as caricatures The writing was dry and the flow was awful The ending was a letdown Readers and the police know who did it, but I really wish the book had ended differently Lynley holds a massive resolution to a murder case that occurred 25 years earlier and it made no sense that he didn t tell anyone about it, or at least to tell what he knew to the person behind this murder The whole book felt like a rough draft &EBOOK ↞ Careless In Red ↡ After the senseless murder of his wife, Detective Superintendent Thomas Lynley retreated to Cornwall, where he has spent six solitary weeks hiking the bleak and rugged coastline But no matter how far he walks, no matter how exhausting his days, the painful memories of Helen s death do not diminishOn the forty third day of his walk, at the base of a cliff, Lynley discovers the body of a young man who appears to have fallen to his death The closest town, better known for its tourists and its surfing than its intrigue, seems an unlikely place for murder However, it soon becomes apparent that a clever killer is indeed at work, and this time Lynley is not a detective but a witness and possibly a suspectThe head of the vastly understaffed local police department needs Lynley s help, though, especially when it comes to the mysterious, secretive woman whose cottage lies not far from where the body was discovered But can Lynley let go of the past long enough to solve a most devious and carefully planned crime I picked this book up because I have watched Thomas Linley on Mystery on PBS and they were okay The last one I had seen was where his pregnant wife why do they always have to be pregnant had been killed They had also just gotten back together after being separated All the elements to make it truly tragic She was killed by a 12 year old with no motive, just a senseless killing On TV they had a different storyline about what happened Anyway, he is dealing with that tragedy by walking a I picked this book up because I have watched Thomas Linley on Mystery on PBS and they were okay The last one I had seen was where his pregnant wife why do they always have to be pregnant had been killed They had also just gotten back together after being separated All the elements to make it truly tragic She was killed by a 12 year old with no motive, just a senseless killing On TV they had a different storyline about what happened Anyway, he is dealing with that tragedy by walking along the coast with only a backpack to carry small amounts of food So of course he finds a body and the story progresses from there This book was irritating in a number of ways, but I think the worst was in the portrayal of families and how dysfunctional all of them are Worse, Lynley isn t that compelling of a character Maybe he is if you have read other books in the series, but he is boring and predictable in this book Of course he meets a woman who is hiding something and it is all a tragic past and he wants her to call him Tommy his wife did , which she refuses to do and I didn t really understand the full implications behind this, but the author seemed to think it was a fairly big deal All the people are unhappy, selfish and don t talk to each other Also, as a veteran mystery reader, it is really frustrating when the police don t ask good questions, or they don t ask the questions all at one time and they have to keep going back to ask obvious ones For example when they went to talk to the family, they didn t even ask about a girlfriend, who would want to hurt the person, how he had gotten a black eye or things like that It just draws the novel out even longer, which this one did not need to do One redeeming part was that one of the women decided to trust and marry her boyfriend One subplot that was dropped was a character s binge drinking, but in the end he goes back to work for his terrible father I don t understand all these English novels where one child is favored above another and the rest are treated so terribly The character of Havers Lynley s partner is the only one with a sense of humor and she has some clever lines The book has some vulgar talk that doesn t seem needed and some sensuous descriptions of intimate moments The mystery was weak also, I guessed who the murderer was and why about a third of the way through I also think Careless in Crimson would have been a way better title Everyone is just so unhappy in this book And then I was really unhappy reading skimming it as well I, like the characters in this book, would have an occasional chuckle and smile from Havers comments, but then would revert back to moroseness Also it may not be fair to rate this book considering it is one of a really long series, but good authors seem to make even individual books within a series stand alone in entertainment value Well written, good characters, good plot Even though I had read a few of hers earlier, I had somehow forgotten about the series This book a Christmas gift was a real reminder of how good Elizabeth George is in her genre and I re read the whole series following this read I m sure I ll do that again