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Star Struck Mass Market Paperback – 1 Dec 2003


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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; New Ed edition (1 Dec. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0006498329
  • ISBN-13: 978-0006498322
  • Product Dimensions: 11.1 x 2.5 x 17.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 158,043 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Val McDermid grew up in a Scottish mining community then read English at Oxford. She was a journalist for sixteen years, spending the last three as Northern Bureau Chief of a national Sunday tabloid. She divides her time between Northumberland and Cheshire

Product Description

Amazon Review

All series thrillers have an element of the soap opera about them, and so it is logical that Val McDermid's sixth novel about Manchester private eye Kate Brannigan should take her into the world of television soaps. Tough computer-literate Brannigan is hired as bodyguard to the star of Northerners, which bears an uncanny resemblance to another soap filmed in Manchester. Brassy Gloria has been warned by her clairvoyant that death is in the offing, but it is the clairvoyant who gets her skull smashed with a crystal ball. Meanwhile, someone is leaking plot lines, Kate's burglar chum is accused of murder when he takes up honest work, and her staff find themselves in sexual predicaments.

There is a charm to all of this, and some intelligent puzzles competently worked through; McDermid knows, or competently invents, the social milieux she describes. The book is particularly good on the feel of the Northwest on a raw winter day--McDermid's writing gets better and better. This book, though, lacks some of the vigour of the earlier Brannigan books and their note of social protest. Her fans will have no complaints, but this is not the best of her books. --Roz Kaveney --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

‘Combines wit and exuberant writing with a careful and clever plot and oodles of perceptive social observation’ The Times

‘McDermid is at her best when describing the petty crimes and scams that flourish in her Northern city… the book has considerable charm’
Mail on Sunday

‘Written with fluent ease, making use of Kate Brannigan’s own distinctive voice, Star Struck is a clever novel as well as an entertaining one’
TLS

‘Contemporary feminist crime at its finest’
Good Housekeeping


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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 28 Sept. 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
More often than not books and films with humorous undertones tend to get less critical acclaim. Unfairly, this also seems to be the case with Val McDermid's Lindsay Gordon and Kate Brannigan books. However, after reading the superb but very dark The Mermaids Singing, and the almost more gruelling The Wire in the Blood, fans must delighted in being able to return to the light relief of Star Struck. In Star Struck, having bought out her partner in the detective agency, Kate Brannigan has gone solo. Against her better judgement Kate agrees to become the bodyguard to Gloria Kendal, star of a television drama that has disturbing similarities to Coronation Street. Once on board, the Manchester PI gets to experience the day-to-day goings on of a television star, and also manages to clear up a spot of blackmail as well as apprehend a murderer. With Star Struck Val McDermid and Kate Brannigan have come along way. The author, having now tackled various genres of crime writing, has honed her ability to give a greater depth to the heroine she created in Dead Beat in 1992. The plotting is taught, the one-liners are funny and come fast and furious, and all the characters are three dimensional and believable. Regardless of which McDermid books you prefer, they inevitably are a great read.
Adrian Muller.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 19 Jun. 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Star Struck is a must for anyone who has ever watched a soap opera. McDermid takes us inside the world behind the scenes and is not at all star-struck at the antics of the cast of her ficitonal soap opera. The dialogue is, as always, very realistic and often very funny indeed. And there's a clever murder mystery worked out as well when the Seer to the Stars gets bumped off without seeing it coming.
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By A Customer on 4 Oct. 1999
Format: Hardcover
More often than not books and films with humorous undertones tend to get less critical acclaim. Unfairly, this also seems to be the case with Val McDermid's Lindsay Gordon and Kate Brannigan books. However, after reading the superb but very dark The Mermaids Singing, and the almost more gruelling The Wire in the Blood, fans must delighted in being able to return to the light relief of Star Struck. In Star Struck, having bought out her partner in the detective agency, Kate Brannigan has gone solo. Against her better judgement Kate agrees to become the bodyguard to Gloria Kendal, star of a television drama that has disturbing similarities to Coronation Street. Once on board, the Manchester PI gets to experience the day-to-day goings on of a television star, and also manages to clear up a spot of blackmail as well as apprehend a murderer. With Star Struck Val McDermid and Kate Brannigan have come along way. The author, having now tackled various genres of crime writing, has honed her ability to give a greater depth to the heroine she created in Dead Beat in 1992. The plotting is taught, the one-liners are funny and come fast and furious, and all the characters are three dimensional and believable. Regardless of which McDermid books you prefer, they inevitably are a great read.
Adrian Muller.
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Format: Hardcover
Gloria Kendal alias Brenda Barrowclough larger than life star of the much loved soap opera 'Northerners' hires Kate Brannigan when she starts receiving threatening letters.
The sixth Kate Brannigan escapade takes into the fascinating world of soap opera both on and off the set. Body guarding is not high on Kate's list of priority jobs, but times aren't what they were.
Kate finds herself in the midst of temperamental stars, who set great store by an astrologer Dorothea Dawson, seer to the stars. With Dorothea turning up dead, her process server getting arrested, and her tame hacker finding 'virtual love' Kate has her hands full. For those of you long term fans of Kate Brannigan, if I tell you that her process server, is Shelley's son you probably get the picture.
This is a great fast moving, fun Kate Brannigan adventure, meeting old friends and making new ones. As always with Val's books, I devoured it in one sitting, and eagerly await the next. Please keep them coming Val, they just get better and better.
Lizzie Hayes 9th July 1999
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By A Customer on 25 Jan. 1999
Format: Hardcover
I love Val McDermid but would have to agree with one of the other reviewers who said this isn't her best. I love the plots - the use of a 'Coronation Street' type character set in Manchester is perfect - but get a little tired with her pre-occupation with her wardrobe. Long suffering boyfriend seems as unbelievable as ever but the characterisation no doubt suffers from Val's lack of interest in boyfriends. I like him but he's never been real. If you live or have lived in Manchester and like crime fiction, this and all her books are an absolute MUST BUY. After living up there for 11 years, Kate Brannigan books are an instant trip down memory lane. If you don't know the city, you can miss a lot of the subtleties of her writing
I bought from a bookshop first day out and didn't regret it but I'd echo other reviewers who've commented that her more psychological mysteries - the Mermaids Singing and Blood in the Wire - are 5 star works and its quite hard to believe they are written by the same person
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