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The Dead Hour Paperback – 16 Jul 2007

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Product details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam; New edition edition (16 July 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553815601
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553815603
  • Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 3 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 903,930 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Denise Mina was born in Glasgow in 1966. Because of her father's job as an engineer, her family moved twenty-one times in eighteen years from Paris to the Hague, London, Scotland and Bergen. After leaving school at sixteen and a run of poorly paid jobs, she went on to study Law at Glasgow University and researched a PhD thesis at Strathclyde.

Misusing her grant, she stayed at home and wrote her first novel, Garnethill, which was published in 1998 and won the Crime Writers' Association John Creasy Dagger for best first crime novel.

Since 1998 she has written seven further novels, including most recently, Still Midnight. She also writes comics and in 2006 wrote her first play, 'Ida Tamson'. As well as all of this she writes short stories and is a regular contributor to TV and radio.

Author photo (c) Colin McPherson

Product Description

Review

" Mina never fails to engage the reader, taking crime fiction into further territory to challenge and extend our perceptions... Puts Mina into the class of the serious psychological novelist." - "Scotland on Sunday "" Scotland has found itself a new Ian Rankin." - "The Times"""Praise for Denise Mina: " One of the most exciting writers to have emerged in Britain for years." - Ian Rankin " The Crown Princess of Crime." - Val McDermid " Field of Blood is more challenging than any crime novel, more engaging than any social commentary, and way more inspiring, inventive and downright chilling than any thriller." - Manda Scott

Book Description

A domestic dispute turns dark and deadly for journalist Paddy Meehan in the second novel of Denise Mina's acclaimed series

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Stephanie De Pue TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 11 July 2010
Format: Paperback
Glasgow's own Denise Mina, whose latest book is "The Dead Hour," is one of the hottest new stars in the galaxy of "Tartan Noir." That is, mysteries as currently written by several Scots. More ferocious and bloodthirsty than most, sporting that black Scottish sense of humor, macabre and sly.

"The Dead Hour" again stars Paddy Meehan, who was introduced in The Field of Blood. It's still the 1980's, Margaret Thatcher's bleak regime. Paddy is still working at the "Scottish Daily News," but has been promoted from copyboy. She's now a reporter, 21 years old, last and least of the pack, who'd better get herself some ink soon. Or else. She's still Catholic, fat, poorly dressed and sporting a spikey hairdo: the girl really can't trade on her looks. She's trying to succeed in a rough and tumble environment. Her coworkers are Protestant, sexist, hard-drinking, hard-bitten older men, sprung from the working class, as is she. But, although Paddy isn't particularly well-educated, she's smart, insightful and conscientious. She has her instincts and intuitions. And she is, in fact, determined to stand on her own two feet, at the job and in her world. She'd better, as her father and brothers have been laid off, and she's now sole support of her family.

Paddy, least senior reporter, is on the night shift, assigned to chase the police radio wherever it takes her as "The Dead Hour" opens. One night, the radio takes her to a prosperous suburb on a domestic violence call. Two BMWs are parked behind the house. There's a bloody-faced woman visible inside: she doesn't seem to want any help. And there's a handsome, pleasant, well-dressed man at the door: he doesn't want any help either.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Sid Nuncius #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on 16 Aug. 2009
Format: Paperback
I enjoyed this book enormously. It has taken me a while to get round to Denise Mina and this is the first book of hers that I have read. It certainly won't be the last.

For those unfamiliar with Mina's work, the book is set in Glasgow in 1984 and the time and place are extremely well evoked without ever being intrusive, which gives a real solidity to the book. Another of its great strengths is the believable and well-drawn characters. In particular, the main protagonist, a young, struggling woman journalist called Paddy Meehan, is very well portrayed. She is an ordinary young woman from a poor background, slightly insecure and worried about her weight. She has no spectacular character traits or flaws to make her "interesting" nor does she have a particularly Complicated Personal Life - just the normal situations one might expect her to have to deal with - and yet she is a very engaging and interesting character. I thought her a really excellent creation by Mina, and the other characters are similarly well drawn and plausible.

Meehan works the night shift, and Mina creates a fine "film noir" atmosphere throughout the book. The plot is gripping and (praise be!) both plausible and comprehensible, and the narrative is well constructed, well written and entertaining. It builds the tension very nicely and I was completely enthralled. All in all, this is one of the best crime novels - indeed one of the best novels - I have read for some time. Very warmly recommended.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Wendy on 30 July 2006
Format: Hardcover
This book is like Denise Mina's others - fantastic! Very hard to put down, wanting to see what happens in the next chapter. Takes a good few twists & the end is brilliant. Just hope there is a follow up to this.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Gloria Feit on 1 July 2012
Format: Paperback
Paddy Meehan, 21 years old and on night shift [called the "calls car" shift, and encompassing the Dead Hour, 3 AM], at the Scottish Daily News in Glasgow, makes one of her usual nightly calls, following the police radio in the car and going to the address to which the police have been summoned. This time it appears to be a domestic disturbance, the victim a young, elegant-looking blond woman who, though obviously bloodied, refuses any assistance and, when Paddy catches her eye, seems to slightly shake her head. The police leave, aided by the passing of money into their hands from the man who had answered the door, a scenario replayed moments later when Paddy, herself now the recipient of a 50 pound note, tries to question him. The following morning Paddy learns that the body of the blond woman, a prosecution attorney from a wealthy family, has been found, having been tortured, beaten and left to die, and she is tormented by the possible role she may have played by her quiescence.

To salve her conscience and, not incidentally, hoping to make her mark as an investigative journalist at the same time, Paddy follows up on the story, which expands when another death follows, whether suicide or murder an uncertain matter.

Glasgow, its rougher as well as finer areas, the helplessness of those affected by 1980's unemployment, and the protagonist's Irish Catholic background, are well drawn, as is Paddy, young, rebellious, hardworking [sole support of her parents and several siblings] and ambitious.
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