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Harbour Street (Vera Stanhope) Hardcover – 16 Jan 2014

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Macmillan; Main Market Ed. edition (16 Jan. 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 023076018X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0230760189
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 3.8 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (327 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 239,163 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Ann Cleeves worked as a probation officer, bird observatory cook and auxiliary coastguard before she started writing. She is a member of 'Murder Squad', working with other northern writers to promote crime fiction. In 2006 Ann was awarded the Duncan Lawrie Dagger for Best Crime Novel, for Raven Black . Ann lives in North Tyneside. Her Vera Stanhope series is currently being turned into a major ITV production to be released in Autumn 2010.

Product Description

Book Description

A silent community. A murderer among them.

From the Back Cover

A silent community. A murderer among them.

Swept along in a jostling crowd, Detective Joe Ashworth and his daughter Jessie board the busy Metro in Newcastle. But when the train is stopped due to bad weather, Jessie notices that an old lady hasn't left with the other passengers: Margaret Krukowski has been fatally stabbed.

DI Vera Stanhope arrives at the crime scene, and she and Joe are soon on their way to the south Northumberland town of Mardle, where Margaret lived, to begin their inquiry. Then, just days later, a second woman is murdered. Vera can feel in her bones that there's a link between the killings - one that she must discover before another life is lost. Retracing Margaret's final steps, Vera finds herself searching deep into the hidden past of this seemingly innocent neighbourhood, led by clues that keep revolving around one street . . .

Why are the residents of Harbour Street so reluctant to speak?

Told with piercing prose and a forensic eye, Ann Cleeves' gripping new novel explores what happens when a community closes ranks to protect their own - and at what point silent witnesses become complicit.

'Nobody does unsettling undercurrents better than Ann Cleeves'

Val McDermid

www.anncleeves.com

Facebook.com/AnnCleeves

@AnnCleeves

[thumbnails of Silent Voices TV jacket and Red Bones TV jacket]

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
AN ENJOYABLE READ

During the prior couple of weeks, I’d read some relative heavyweights so turned to my bookshelves for something lighter. Not poorly written – heaven forbid anything of that ilk should ever find its way there – but lighter in the context that a tired old brain might simply absorb the words and take itself along for the ride. I could not have picked anything better for the purpose!

Ann Cleeves’ Harbour Street is the sixth in a series devolving upon her character, Detective Inspector Vera Stanhope. Vera, an aging lady of heroic proportions, is a charismatic, intuitive old school copper but one who has moved pretty well with the times. She is supported by her sergeant, Joe Ashworth, a young family man in whom – although she feels he may lack a bit of imagination – Vera has instilled many of her values. He is, perhaps, the nearest thing she has to a son. There are other police involved but main among them is the young fashion plate Holly, bright enough but needing the odd prompt.

“(Detective Sergeant) Joe Ashworth and his daughter Jessie are swept along in the jostling crowd onto the Metro. But when the train is stopped due to bad weather, and the other passengers fade into the swirling snow, Jessie notices that an old lady hasn't left the train: Margaret Krukowski has been fatally stabbed as she sat on the crowded train. Nobody, including the policeman himself, sees the stabbing take place.”

Thus is the scene set for a murder investigation.

The elegant and slightly enigmatic Margaret has always been attractive to the opposite sex and, even though now old, still retains an ability to turn men’s heads.
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This is number 6 in the D.I. Vera Stanhope series and I think it's the best so far - and as I have enjoyed them all, that's saying something.
For Kate Dewar life seems to have finally come right - two teenage children Chloe and Ryan, a new relationship with a steady reliable man, the possibility of resurrecting her previous singing stardom and to boot she owns and runs a successful b and b in the small fishing village of Mardle, in Northumberland - life couldn't get much better.......... until the day there is a knock on the door and the police come with news that will break her peaceful life wide open.

Kate has to come to terms with the sad fact that Margaret Krukowski, who lived in the attic apartment at the b and b and was a good friend of Kate and the children, has been stabbed while travelling home by train. Margaret, the gentle refined woman, the woman who helped out at the church and the nearby home for abused women - Who could possibly want her dead. This is a murder that spans a lifetime of secrets and is set to tear the people of Mardle apart.
Vera, with her unorthodox policing, and her team are pitted against a wall of silence - The characters, as usual work well together, Joe the family man and Vera'a favourite member of the team, Holly, very prickly like her name and rather insecure, always trying too hard - and Charlie finally getting over his wife leaving him - all gel together to make a good working team.

I really enjoyed this book, as with most series, it's better to read them in order, as I have done, but in saying that this book stands alone and makes sense without having read the others. I recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good murder mystery with great characters.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By ACB(swansea) TOP 50 REVIEWER on 24 Jan. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A young girl, Jesse, discovers a stabbed, dead body on a packed metro. Her name is Margaret Krukowski, a resident in a guest house in Harbour Street, Mardle. Vera Stanhope is soon on the case, prying and probing into why a 70 year old lady was mysteriously killed. Vera loves digging around another person's private life, perhaps because she has none of her own. Margaret Krukowski had married a Polish refugee when young. She helped running the guest house owned by Kate Dewar that had a regular clientele. She was benevolent, helping the church and The Haven, a refuge for homeless women. Police enquiries were leading nowhere. Residents were reluctant to give information on the dead victim, well-known, but Vera was convinced they were hiding information for personal reasons. There are a host of suspects, all with skeletons in their closets.

Ann Cleeves draws the characters in great depth. They are all believable. As the facts are uncovered, the extent of the intrigue within Harbour Street and Mardle becomes apparent. Surprising and shocking revelations come to light. The finale is thrilling as the culprit is hounded and found out. The plot is well constructed and captivating. Vera is a stand out character. The atmosphere of the murder enquiry and locations are superb in this outstanding crime thriller.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Bookie TOP 100 REVIEWER on 24 Jun. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
I've only discovered the Vera Stanhope series recently and I'm not reading in any particular order. I find Vera fascinating as a lead character. She's quirky but plausible. She's not much of a stickler for rules and I really enjoy the way the reader has access to her inner thoughts about her colleagues and the suspects. Those insights often provide the contrast of humour in the midst of darkness.

The cast of characters in this story is diverse. Each has an interesting backstory and events are largely self contained in a small geographic area of Newcastle. But the dialogue keeps the carefully crafted plot moving forward and with a number of suspects, it had me guessing right up to the actual reveal. Really enjoyed it.
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