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Hiding the Elephant: The first Simon Grant Mystery (Simon Grant Mysteries) Paperback – 20 May 2011

11 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 376 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1st edition (20 May 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1461195977
  • ISBN-13: 978-1461195979
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 2.4 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,784,235 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Mira Kolar-Brown was born and educated in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. She came to the UK in 1977 and has considered it her home ever since. She worked as a tutor at two universities and as a project manager for an NGO and a QUANGO. Since early retirement, she's been working as a translator and interpreter for the public sector. That offers ample opportunity for research into the work of police, welfare system, courts, immigration and health services. Such first hand knowledge and experience are invaluable for writing mystery novels.

She lives in the north-west of England and has two grown-up daughters and two grandchildren.

Product Description

About the Author

Mira Kolar-Brown was born and educated in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. She came to the UK in 1977 and has considered it her home ever since. She worked as tutor at two universities and as a project manager for an NGO and a QUANGO. Upon early retirement, she has been working as a translator and interpreter for the public sector. This offers ample opportunities for research into the work of police, welfare system, courts, immigration and health organisations. This first hand knowledge and experience proved invaluable in writing mystery novels. She lives in the north-west if England and has two grown-up daughters and two grandchildren. Hiding the Elephant is the first novel in the Simon Grant Mysteries series.

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Barry Pryke on 1 Jun. 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
A good, if complicated, story with a cast of thousands, which at times took some following. I was uncomfortable with the amount of formatting, spelling, grammar and typing errors, and many times there were sentences with more than one tense in the same sentence, but you just have to stick with it. You need stickability to concentrate your way through it, but the effort is repaid in the end. A six hour time line takes controlling in such a long story and as most of it is told in flashback you have to keep your wits about you. A lot of the characters remembered and tried to tell their whole life story in the midst of whatever action they were involved in, which at times was disconcerting.
Mira's style is distinctive, full of telling details and well turned phrases, and repays the close attention needed. Yes, I like her style.
Now I'm off to download another one of hers, so that should tell you what you need to know.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By James A. Anderson on 22 Mar. 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
My review of Mira Kolar-Bown's HIDING THE ELEPHANT (Simon Grant Mysteries) has now gone live on Amazon:

I've never read such a wonderful, complex mystery in a long time. Mira Kolar-Brown's writing reminds me a lot of P.D. James.

She elevates the genre to a much higher literary standard. Mind you, this is not a fast-paced, page-turning read. It takes some time and one has to concentrate because of the many plot and character complexities. Not my usual reading fare or preference, but I quite enjoyed the journey and the rather surprising conclusion.

It is a very complex mystery set in northeast England where I lived for a while as a young boy. It brought back some fond memories.

There's a lot to the story. The book starts with the protaganist,Detective Inspector Simon Grant, injured and being held at gun point by a killer called Dancer. Told through the skillful use of flashbacks, the story brings out the complexities of Inspector Grant and what makes him the way he is. The book is rich in complex characters and will drive you crazy trying to figure out who the killer is. I didn't.

HIDING THE ELEPHANT is a wonderful read, very satisfying and I can't wait to read the followup novel, LOCK UP YOUR DAUGHTERS (Simon Grant Mysteries) . Both books are a bargain at 77p. You can even get them both in a special edition, Two Simon Grant Mysteries
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Carol Arnall on 19 Nov. 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A good all round read!
I confess I don't normally read this genre; but after hearing so much about the book I decided to give it a try.
I'm so pleased that I did!
Yes, it does makes you concentrate; this in my view is an excellent thing.
There are flashbacks but these only add to the story.
I found myself wanting to know more and more as the story progressed.
All in all, Hiding the Elephant is a brilliant read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By mountainmama on 7 May 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
Mira Kolar-Brown has created a fabulously intricate mystery that will keep you reading until you find out whodunit. Which will not happen until you reach the end!

Inspector Simon Grant finds himself outwitted by a killer, and tells us the story of how he got himself into this predicament. His tale is revealed through a series of flashbacks that are maddeningly deceptive and vague enough to throw you off the track every time you think you've figured out what's going on. Red herrings abound as you follow the convoluted trail to one scenario after the other.

Beautifully crafted - an impressive work by Ms. Brown, and I'm looking forward to reading the next in the series. Well done!
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Leighton D. Gage on 4 May 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
That's not criticism. It's praise.
Mira Kolar-Brown is a mystery writer.
And deceit in a mystery writer isn't a vice; it's a virtue.

It's no fun, for a mystery reader, to figure out who the murderer is by page fifty.
One of the obligations of a mystery writer is to keep mystery readers guessing.
And that, folks, is something that Ms. Kolar-Brown is really, really good at.

Want some proof of her capacity for duplicity?
Read Hiding the Elephant.
I'm willing to bet you won't hit on the murderer before you hit the last chapter.
And, as an extra zinger, there's even a revelation in the book's final paragraph.

Hiding the Elephant begins with Kolar-Brown's protagonist, Detective Inspector Simon Grant, being held at gunpoint by a murderer. The cops have nicknamed the killer Dancer. They have their reasons for the sobriquet, but so does the author: it enables her to conceal the sex of the killer.

Flashback: a plumber arrives and discovers Frances Swan, dead in her home. Dancer's victim is single, twenty-four years old, fairly well-to-do and an orphan who lives alone. Her throat has been cut, her fingers, ears and some of her hair chopped off. The area around her body shows signs of being staged. The forensics people discover that someone else has been sleeping under her roof, but in a separate bed.

In the days that follow, the mysteries continue to pile up: a small child has been killed by a hit-and-run driver. Is there a connection? The wife of the local veterinarian, a friend of the victim, takes off on a relief mission to Bosnia and disappears. (It is 1992, and the war is in full swing.) Is she a victim of the same or a different killer? A man is stabbed. Before dying, he utters some cryptic last words.
Read more ›
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