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Trick Of The Dark [Abridged, Audiobook, CD] [Audio CD]

Val McDermid , Haydn Gwynne
2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (113 customer reviews)
RRP: 15.98
Price: 14.94 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Kindle Edition 3.85  
Hardcover 17.09  
Paperback 3.85  
Audio, CD, Abridged, Audiobook, CD 14.94  
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Book Description

2 Sep 2010

Death is a hollow drum whose beat has measured out my adult life.' So writes Jay Macallan Stewart in her latest volume of memoirs. But nobody has ever asked whether that has been by accident or design. Nobody, that is, until Jay turns her sights on newly-wed and freshly-widowed Magda Newsam. For Magda's mother Corinna is an Oxford don who knows enough of Jay's history to be very afraid indeed.

Determined to protect her daughter, Corinna turns to clinical psychologist Charlie Flint. But it's not the best time for Charlie. Her career is in ruins. Pilloried by the press, under investigation by her peers, she's barred from the profiling work she loves. What Corinna's asking may be her last chance at redemption. But as Charlie digs into the past and its trail of bodies she starts to realise the price of truth may be more than she wants to pay.

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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Hachette Audio; Abridged edition edition (2 Sep 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1405508434
  • ISBN-13: 978-1405508438
  • Product Dimensions: 13.4 x 13.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (113 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 742,296 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


... a brutally clever story' --The Mirror

'Wonderfully compelling stuff' --The Daily Mail --This text refers to an alternate Audio CD edition.

Book Description

The new chilling standalone from the author of the Tony Hill series

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Gripping Read. 9 Nov 2010
I've read most of Val McDermid's earlier books but I must admit, Tony Hill just didn't grip me and I moved on to crime writers new. However, after reading reviews in the newspapers for Trick of the Dark, I thought I'd give this book a go and managed to finish it in a couple of days whilst on holiday. The book is a classic slow burner and does indeed take a while to get going but it's a book that draws you in and leaves you unable to put it back down until the end. Yes, the plot is a little predictable in places and yes, some of the dialogue may be a little dry but this doesn't detract from the overall appeal of the book. It is nice to see lesbian main characters in mainstream Top 10 fiction but that is not what this book is about. Complex relationships and life changing decisions abound, Trick of the Dark is an excellent read and Val McDermid remains on top form.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not her best but still a page-turner 27 Mar 2011
I'm a big Val McDermid fan and agree with others that it's not her best and the plot is a bit implausible, but it's still a page-turner (I just read it in one go on a long-haul flight).
Do buy it - you will enjoy it - but (message to Val) yes, you can do better, and the plot twist felt a bit amateur.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not What I Expected, But Still Good and Gripping 17 Aug 2011
By Simon Savidge Reads TOP 1000 REVIEWER
The premise of `Trick of the Dark' is a hard one to summarise, especially without giving the plot away so I shall try my best without any spoilers. As the novel opens we meet `disgraced' psychiatrist Dr Charlie Flint who has been suspended from her job and is considering on leaving her wife Maria, a dentist, for another woman - one she barely knows but the chemistry is too strong. Over breakfast she receives a mysterious parcel filled with press cuttings of a recent murder of a groom at his wedding. Initially Charlie things this is nothing to do with her, until she recognises the dead mans wife, Magda, who was the daughter of Charlie's old tutor Corinna when she studied in Oxford. Are you still with me? Good.

Charlie decides to investigate, she has the time and she wants to redeem herself for something we slowly learn about so I won't spoil it, in doing so she goes back to her old life in Oxford to meet Corinna who believes her daughter is now having a lesbian affair with a murderer, Jay Macallan Stewart. Jay is now a multi-millionaire of the era, she is also the best seller of misery memoirs and, if Corinna is to be believed, she is also a serial killer from murdering a fellow student that got in her way back at school to Magda's husband Philip and countless in-between. Sounds far fetched doesn't it, Charlie certainly thinks so and yet she decides to investigate anyway opening secrets from the past that might be best left alone.

I admit, though it might be a poor explanation from me above, that the story does sound rather complicated and far fetched. Val McDermid makes this all sound highly believable, gripping and yet doesn't loose the reader in the twists, turns and possible red herrings she plants along the way.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Customer criticism unwarranted 1 May 2011
By puma
Val McDermid is one of the most gripping crime/mystery writers in the English language, and "Trick of the Dark" is, simply put, a good novel. It's hard to put down once you've started, and much of the criticism on this website is based on McDermid's (inevitable) decision to make most of the main characters lesbians. While I wouldn't have said this was necessarily my cup of tea had I known before I started the book, I have to say it didn't at all affect the enjoyment of reading the novel. While this may not be McDemid's best book, it's definitely worth reading and is still far better than 95 percent of the other books out there in the genre.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars rubbish 14 Feb 2013
Was eagerly awaiting this book for my birthday but was massively disappointed when I finally got it and started reading it. I'm a huge fan of the Tony hill series so thought this would be good. But after only a few chapters I was put off by the unrealistic amount of lesbian main characters who seemed shallow and contrived the plot was stupid. I'm not homophobic at all but I need a book to absorb my interest and this book failed miserably. I'm afraid to say I didn't finish reading it which is rare for me. The only other time that happened was fifty shades of grey so this book is sat gathering dust on my bookshelf.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Self indulgent twaddle 14 Nov 2012
Utter nonsense from an author I usually enjoy. Characters I could not give a stuff about, engaged in activities I found scarcely credible with a plot that bordered on the ridiculous.

Get well soon Val.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not her best work, by a long way 19 Dec 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I couldn't quite believe I was reading a novel by Val McDermid, an author I normally like a lot. In many places, this read rather as I would imagine a Jeffrey Archer book to read. What I found most irritating was the very contrived and unnatural dialogue -- the plot is partially revealed through characters giving each other detailed and pedantic accounts of events they already know about. This contributed to the general lack of credibility of the characters, who seemed more like allegories than multi-dimensional human beings. (I also can't quite believe that anyone could eat as much as these people do.)

The lesbian angle was no problem, though this seemed like a strange world where men are at best peripheral characters. In particular, I found it difficult to recognise the Oxford of the 1990s, which seemed about half a century -- in terms of attitudes to sexuality, gender balance, and the amount of formality between students and academic staff -- behind the Cambridge I attended in the 1970s.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, if not her best
This is a typically tense standalone thriller from Val McDermid. It's a story of love, betrayal, pathological loyalty, deceit and intrigue. Read more
Published 22 days ago by M. V. Clarke
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read
Once again this author has excelled herself. Her stories and plots keep you in suspense from start to finish. Great.
Published 2 months ago by Mrs. Mary E. Owen
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy it. I'm glad I did.
A great read. I warmly reccomend to anyone who likes a good thriller. Keep them coming Val the afternoons will be a sad place when I get to the end of all your novels.
Published 3 months ago by jill richmond
4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly good
Some years since I'd read Val McDermid, but really enjoyed this. Good relatively believable story and good backgrounds. Would make a good film.
Published 5 months ago by Anna Jones
4.0 out of 5 stars Stand alone murder mystery
Not one of Val's better books, although I hadn't guessed who done it until nearer the end. For me there was too much emphasis on the lesbian relationships and not enough on the... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Book chatter
3.0 out of 5 stars Good characterisation, disappointing plotting
I have read a couple of McDermid's Tony Hill books and purchased this one to see how the author would manage a one-off novel. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Dr R
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic
This is a truly excellent book. Riveting story, characters, and scenes and a totally believable story. Love her books. Try it
Published 10 months ago by BDH
5.0 out of 5 stars Trick of the Dark. Val McDermid
Arrived as expected on Kindle.
Yet to read when on Holiday.....very soon
Val rarely if ever lets the crime reader down in her writing.
Published 10 months ago by D B Denwette
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read
As usual, a great story weaving the characters so well! Haven't been disappointed with any of her books . Will be looking for another title soon
Published 11 months ago by mojo
2.0 out of 5 stars Service poor. Book excellent.
The condition of this item was not as described. The spine is clearly marked, the cover has scratches, there are corners bent on the cover and on the internal pages. Read more
Published 12 months ago by JG
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