Shop now Shop now Shop now Wedding Guest Edit Shop All Amazon Fashion Cloud Drive Photos Learn More Shop now Shop now Shop Fire Shop Kindle Oasis Learn more Shop now Learn more

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars173
4.3 out of 5 stars
Your rating(Clear)Rate this item


There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

If you are reading this series out of order make sure you read number 12 - 'Aftermath' before you read this one as it gives away the ending of that book and is a continuation of it in many ways. DI Annie Cabbot is on loan to Eastern Area and is working in the murder of a woman in a wheelchair on a cliff at Whitby. She couldn't have got there by herself and it wasn't suicide so who would have had a motive to do the deed? Meanwhile, back in Eastvale, DCI Banks is involved in the brutal rape and murder of a young woman in an alley which is part of an area of the town known as The Maze.

Annie and Alan are not getting on well but neither is quite sure why. But two investigations which look as though they could be linked in ways which are far from clear mean they really do need to talk to each other and compare notes. This is a gripping and well written novel with plenty of nail biting moments and a very tense conclusion. No one will be the same when the murderer or murderers are discovered.

If you enjoy crime stories with believable and likeable characters, excellent plots which are very well written with plenty of psychological depth to them then this could be the series you are looking for. I have been reading them back to back now for the last couple of months and I am still enjoying them - which is always the test of a good series.
0Comment|6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 23 August 2007
Oh how I waited for this new book to come out and I wasn't disappointed. Peter Robinson is, quite simply, brilliant. I cannot get enough of Alan and his complicated relationship with Annie. The link with the other book earlier in the series had left me in awe of how much I did remember, and my own visualisation of the character, albeit its a fair few years since I read it. The description of Annie walking onto the beach was so brilliantly written I felt I was actually there and could hear the sea. How my hero, Alan Banks, has not been not made into a television series and hence the best detective on television, I will never know. Peter Robinson has never once disappointed me with any of the previous 16 books in this series. I now have to be patient until he writes the next one and, boy, I cannot wait!!!
0Comment|13 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
Peter Robinson grew up in Yorkshire, and is the author of thirteen previous novels featuring Inspector Banks. He is the winner of numerous awards in the United States, Britain and Canada, and in 2002 he won the CWA Dagger in the Library. As I also come from Leeds the background to his stories is something that I have experienced first hand and because of this I have a special affection for his books. However they would be first class crime fiction wherever they were based. This book is the latest in the Chief Inspector Banks novels.

On a cliff overlooking the North Sea, a woman in a wheelchair stares with unseeing eyes out at the waves. looking at something she will never see again because she is dead. She has been murdered. Miles away in a storeroom in Eastvale, Yorkshire, a young woman lies still on a heap of scraps of leather. She has also been murdered. The bodies of the two women are discovered at about the same time that DI Annie Cabbot, on secondment to the Eastern Area force, wakes up with a severe hangover in the bed of a young man she barely recognizes . . .

Peter Robinson weaves another intricate plot, as only he can. If I am not mistaken this is number 17 in the Chief Inspector Banks series and they have all been excellent reading. The author's writing style makes for easy reading and his characters, particularly his lead character are well established and almost seem like old friends.
0Comment|11 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 14 March 2008
Best enjoyed in the context of his earlier work AFTERMATH, Peter Robinson's FRIEND OF THE DEVIL is a stunning addition to his British police detective series. Not only does the reader glimpse more of the unfolding dynamics between the main characters, but also, the case hearkens back to the past as new murders challenge both the detectives and the reader to look at the past through a different perspective.

Detective Chief Inspector Alan Banks and Detective Inspector Annie Cabbot investigate a series of chilling murders. Cabbot investigates a brutal and chilling murder of a parapalegic woman in a wheelchair while Banks investigates the brutal murder and rape of a woman found in The Maze. Although these crimes seem unrelated, the murders provoke both Banks and Cabbot to look into their own histories to past crimes that have touched their lives. The eerie murder of the mysterious woman in the wheelchair haunts the imagination as the detectives ponder the thoughts a woman unable to defend herself or even voice a protest in her last moments. The first layer of clues unraveled is only one layer to this finely constructed suspenseful mystery. When Banks' investigation solves the mystery of one crime detail of the rape and murder, more mysteries emerge. Will the security cameras around the Maze aid or complicate this investigation? Each clue, each new development twists and turns the investigation, keeping the reader in suspense until the final dramatic scene.

FRIEND OF THE DEVIL explores the ambiguity in the relationship between Detective Chief Inspector Alan Banks and Detective Inspector Annie Cabbot. Peter Robinson's unflinching and realistic look into the conflicts in their personal lives add a depth to the characterization as their past chafes and recalls earlier moments and the character's personal weaknesses. In FRIEND OF THE DEVIL, relationships aren't easy or simplistic and, to the reader's delight, neither is the path to catching the perpetrators of these crimes. Precise, sometimes stark descriptive details heighten the terror of these crimes all the way to the shocking climatic end.

Chilling, eerie and full of surprises, Peter Robinson's FRIEND OF THE DEVIL gradually builds up a fascinating look into memory, interweaving it into the very thematic structure. Memory underpins this mystery, interwoven within the very core as reminiscences from a former case haunt Banks. Past events present obstacles to personal relationships. Even in the murders themselves, Banks and Cabbot must delve into the memories of witnesses. Quite simply, Peter Robinson's kaleidoscope into memory makes FRIEND OF THE DEVIL a good choice for readers who might crave a little extra to ponder in addition to riveting suspense.
11 comment|21 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 17 September 2015
Readers of "Aftermath" would have, like me, put that book down without thinking that a sequel was either inevitable or necessary, and "Friend of the Devil" isn't really a sequel in that it doesn't pick up on unresolved issues in the first story, but it does hook on, and in quite a fascinating way. As so often in modern mysteries, the explanation of patterns of behavior lies in the past, so there's a lot of digging done here by Annie Cabot, seconded to a neighboring police force, that finds her dealing with some events from six years earlier than the narrative present and other events going back eighteen years, as she tries to figure out why a paraplegic women is sitting on a cliff-edge in a wheelchair with her throat slit. Robinson's control of the chronology is impressive, and so, as almost always, is his feel for procedural detail that makes even his most bizarre stories seem plausible. There are, however, what one might call Gothic features to what we can call Annie's narrative that give it an odd relationship to the paired narrative of Banks's effort to solve a murder in Eastvale in an area called "the Maze," a jumble of little streets and even smaller alleys that are impenetrable to closed-circuit video, that can catch images from the periphery of some parts but can by no means settle for certain who is where when or who does what when. This second story, Banks's, is not particularly focused on the distant past and is, in many ways a more conventional procedural story. Robinson gets these stories together in a way that brings the murderer from one story into the orbit of the other, and I have to say that it takes a bit of forcing on Robinson's part to bring it off. It's a bit of a cheap trick too to introduce, very late, a point of view of a near-victim just (it seems) to enable Robinson to write a rather Gothic killing scene. Robinson does better when we don't know anything more than the investigating officers know -- i. e. when the points of view are restricted to members of the police force -- mostly Annie and Banks, but also Winsome at times. Still -- the procedural elements are strongly handled and in them lies the plausibility of even the most unlikely circumstances in the world of Banks. "Aftermath" was better -- but this one will keep you reading.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
TOP 500 REVIEWERon 9 September 2014
This is one of the later books featuring Inspector Banks of the Eastvale CID. A girl is murdered on a saturday night in the town centre. A woman has her throat slit in Whitby. Is there a connection?
This is one of the later books in the series which refers back to one of the earlier ones. It is not essential to have read the earlier book though if you haven't, I suspect you may wish to having read this one.
I like the Inspector Banks series of books. They are well written with a good plot but are not as complex as other crime books. Consequently, I consider these to be a slightly light detective novel. The author is not given to detailed descriptions of the crime scenes and nor are these deep, psychological thrillers. The plot is good though not too complex with lots of twists. Don't get me wrong, I like a good psychological thriller but sometimes a slightly less complex book is called for & this fits the bill.
Banks is, in some ways, a fairly typical fictional detective. His personal life is a mess and he doesn't always get on well with his senior officers. He also drives a nice car & likes classical music! It is the supporting cast which I like particularly. Winsome is a six foot black woman with a slight chip on her shoulder who causes a stir wherever she goes. Annie Cabot is an emotional wreck in her personal life but a detective to be reckoned with.
The plot is not overly complex nor totally unpredictable. However it is well structured and well written. It all comes together very satisfactorily at the end. There are poignant moments as well as amusing ones.
I have read a great many Inspector Banks books which I have enjoyed very much. This is as good a book as the others - entertaining and a good read.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
VINE VOICEon 15 September 2008
That this, the 17th novel in the Inspector Banks series, feels fresh and the characters are still developing, is testament to Peter Robinson's considerable skill as a writer. His plots are dark and often harrowing, as is the case here, with two seemingly disparate cases; Banks is focussed on the rape and murder of a young student in a secluded alleyway in Eastvale, while DI Cabbot is seconded to Eastern Division and is investigating the violent death of a quadriplegic. Inevitably, both cases dovetail, but convincingly so, and there's an interesting tie-in with Robinson's standalone book 'Caedmon's Song' - one piece of advice, if you haven't read 'Caedmon's Song', do so before reading this. It'll make your experience of this novel much richer.

As the cases come together, they get more harrowing and the violence continues, leading up to a bloody, enthralling climax. The principal characters, Banks and Cabbot, are as interesting as ever; seemingly having drifted apart somewhat, they both have personal adventures of their own, but cannot cut themselves off from each other completely. There are also many other great characters, and Robinson's dialogue, scene setting and understanding of common prejudices and cultural habits make for a great read. Highly recommended.
0Comment|5 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
Peter Robinson grew up in Yorkshire, and is the author of thirteen previous novels featuring Inspector Banks. He is the winner of numerous awards in the United States, Britain and Canada, and in 2002 he won the CWA Dagger in the Library. As I also come from Leeds the background to his stories is something that I have experienced first hand and because of this I have a special affection for his books. However they would be first class crime fiction wherever they were based. This book is the latest in the Chief Inspector Banks novels.

On a cliff overlooking the North Sea, a woman in a wheelchair stares with unseeing eyes out at the waves. looking at something she will never see again because she is dead. She has been murdered. Miles away in a storeroom in Eastvale, Yorkshire, a young woman lies still on a heap of scraps of leather. She has also been murdered. The bodies of the two women are discovered at about the same time that DI Annie Cabbot, on secondment to the Eastern Area force, wakes up with a severe hangover in the bed of a young man she barely recognizes . . .

Peter Robinson weaves another intricate plot, as only he can. If I am not mistaken this is number 17 in the Chief Inspector Banks series and they have all been excellent reading. The author's writing style makes for easy reading and his characters, particularly his lead character are well established and almost seem like old friends.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 12 April 2011
In the Maze, a warren of alleyways and coutyards in the heart of Eastvale a young woman lies dead. After being raped her body has been laid out in a posed position on a pile of leather scraps. DCI Banks has to find out how anyone could have killed Hayley Daniels and not shown up on the extesive CCTV coverage that existed in the Maze and miles away on the edge of a cliff overlooking the North Sea a quaderiplegic woman is found in her wheelchair with her throat cut. DI Annie Cabbot is on secondment to Eastern Section and she is alloted the task of finding the killer of a woman whose identity does not exist. Annie also has troubles of her own as,after waking up next to a stranger after a one night stand she finds he has taken photographs of her in compromising positions and now he is stalking her and using the photographs as blackmail to lure her into further meetings. The relationship between Banks and Cabbott has also broken down so she feels she has no one to turn to. Then she finds out the identity of the murdered woman and over in Eastvale a police officer is killed and suddenly the two cases are linked - or are they? Only Peter Robinson can weave so many incidents together into an intricate mix of chilling suspense.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
TOP 500 REVIEWERon 16 November 2015
I have enjoyed earlier books in this series more, but this is still a well crafted set of cases.

I was surprised by Annie Cabot's going off the rails and as much by the younger lad she picks up almost stalking her after she makes it clear she's not interested. Couldn't he find a girl his own age?
Banks comes across as purposeless outside his job and starts an unlikely relationship with a much younger lady.

The crimes are serious but it's odd how this Eastvale station doesn't tackle tractor theft, cannabis growhouses or other major crimes. Just bizarre deaths. I did feel too many crimes were being shoehorned into the tale, past and present. And if a girl is killed in a maze of dark lanes in town, why is no council official involved, when you would expect them to be under pressure to put up serious lighting for public safety.

This is a complex and maybe over-clever tale with a lot of names to keep straight and case files expanding like concertinas, so not the best place to start the series.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse