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35 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just excellent!
I am a huge Luther fan. And being able to read about him as well as watch him on television, well, it gave me mixed feelings. Feelings of terror and dread about what I would find inside. Feelings of exhilaration, fear, excitement. I couldn't wait! And Neil Cross didn't disappoint me.

Firstly, let me say that LUTHER: THE CALLING is freestanding from the series...
Published on 15 Aug 2011 by Mel Sherratt

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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars You don't need to be familiar with the TV series
Neil Cross is a screenwriter who created the TV series Luther - Series 1 [DVD]. This novel is a prequel to that series, which I have never seen, but it also works as a standalone crime novel.

DCI John Luther, "a big man with a big walk", is a damaged cop whose marriage is falling apart. The story involves two cases. In the first, a property developer is...
Published on 7 Aug 2011 by Julia Flyte


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35 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just excellent!, 15 Aug 2011
This review is from: LUTHER: The Calling (Hardcover)
I am a huge Luther fan. And being able to read about him as well as watch him on television, well, it gave me mixed feelings. Feelings of terror and dread about what I would find inside. Feelings of exhilaration, fear, excitement. I couldn't wait! And Neil Cross didn't disappoint me.

Firstly, let me say that LUTHER: THE CALLING is freestanding from the series. This is an original book and not a tie-in or novelization. It's one of John Luther's cases pre-series. So there are some characters in there that you don't expect to read about, which I found really good. If, like me, you like the television series for it's unbelievably believable writing, characters and plots, then you'll love LUTHER: THE CALLING. If you haven't watched any of series one or two of Luther, you could pick this book up and enjoy it as it stands. And I have to say, for me, reading it with Idris Elba in mind was wonderful!

LUTHER: THE CALLING is dark, compelling, squeamish, pacy, twisted, well written obviously, ghoulish. In one word - perfect. It felt to me like reading a TV script in book form. Short, sharp sentences. A sense of place would be described in only three words. A character described in four or five words. But the words used were so perfect to provide exactly the right images and feelings.

The only thing I don't like about a book which is this good is that it is so hard to review - I want to say and this happens and then this happens next and wait until you read this part...there are so many euwww moments in it that make it fabulous.

John Luther is now a crime fiction hero - or maybe an anti-hero - and I can't wait to read the next book.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic book, a must have for any fan of the tv show, 11 Aug 2011
This review is from: LUTHER: The Calling (Hardcover)
this book is great, and gives you a real insight into luther's personal and work life. The book leads up to the first scene of the first series, and also gives more information on Ian Reed's greed fuelled killing spree. Also worth noting, that this book mentions a few characters from neil cross' earlier book "Captured". You do not need to read captured to understand the plot though.

If you are a fan of the show you must buy this book, you won't be dissapointed.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars British crime at its best..., 15 April 2012
Wow...wow...wow - what a story.
The story is the written prequel to Luther (TV show starring Idris Elba). The main themes involve child abduction and murder mixed with doing the wrong thing for the right reason. The murder scenes are extremely graphic and leave a sense of fear hanging about in your mind long after you have finished the chapter.

Luther is a man of very few words but when he does speak there is a reason for his dialogue, he is intense and that intensity is apparent on most pages of the book. Neil Cross has created a character who is mostly on the side of good but Luther will cross the line to help the vulnerable - he simply will not tolerate a bully or much worse.

Cross also introduces the supporting characters with few words, he allows the reader to form their own vision of the cast. This is a page turner, flitting from character to character and introducing some enjoyable side quests.

The novel is dark and moody with very little humour although Schenk lightens the mood on occasions with his probing of Luther's mental state.

I read a lot of James Patterson in his early days and have never found a cop thriller that has excited me or kept me glued to the pages long enough to finish the last page until this.

Without doubt it is excellent and will entertain for a weekend, much better than what is on the TV - unless of course it is a re-run of Luther.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars You don't need to be familiar with the TV series, 7 Aug 2011
By 
Julia Flyte - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: LUTHER: The Calling (Hardcover)
Neil Cross is a screenwriter who created the TV series Luther - Series 1 [DVD]. This novel is a prequel to that series, which I have never seen, but it also works as a standalone crime novel.

DCI John Luther, "a big man with a big walk", is a damaged cop whose marriage is falling apart. The story involves two cases. In the first, a property developer is putting heavy pressure on an aged tenant to move out of his home and when the book opens his heavies have just beaten up Luther's colleague, who has been trying to protect the old man. The second and major plotline involves the murder of a young couple and the theft of their unborn baby. In both instances, Luther becomes heavily and very personally involved.

Neil Cross has a taut style of writing. He doesn't spend a lot of time on back stories or lengthy descriptions. It's tight and relentless and bang! - it draws you in immediately. After only a few pages, I felt like I had been reading the book for some time. The storyline in this book is more complex that his books usually are. He's juggling a large cast of characters. It feels reminiscent of Simon Kernick's early books, about flawed cop Dennis Milne. The pace is fast and the action continues right up until the final page. My main critique is that there's not a lot of suspense (compared to his other books), and the suspense that there is tends to be about what's going on in Luther's head rather than how the plot will resolve itself.

Be aware that it's fairly violent and some of the sexual descriptions are pretty graphic.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Keep on Callin', 17 Feb 2014
This review is from: The Calling: A John Luther Novel (Kindle Edition)
Written by the creator of Luther (the hit BBC TV show), this is another entry to the series but in novel form this time. It's a deeper look into the titular character's world, in an original story (which is to say, not an episode that's been stretched out to novel length), which I assume has some links to the show, but is also separate from it. I haven't ever watched Luther before, so I couldn't tell you what parts link and what parts don't, but I can tell you that it doesn't matter whether you've seen the TV show.

Essentially it's a murder-mystery novel, but not as straightforward. It also involves a kidnapped baby that's been ripped straight from the womb of a victim, and a deeper motive for the killings than just murder. It also has a pointless side plot that adds nothing of real interest to the story. It was basically just semi-entertaining filler.

The novel as a whole is quick-paced, well written, dark and gruesome--in a good way--and it has enough twists and surprises and action to make you want to constantly keep reading. I wasn't bored at any point and sometimes had to force myself to put it down.

In short: Read the damn book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars GRIPPING, 7 July 2013
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This review is from: The Calling: A John Luther Novel (Kindle Edition)
If you like the series you will love this book. Gets hold of your imagination from the first page to the last. Can almost see and feel every emotion in this short book. That's my only downer. IT FINISHED!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant read..., 5 July 2013
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This review is from: The Calling: A John Luther Novel (Kindle Edition)
Couldn't put the book down...and am disappointed to have finished it. Gruesome content but riveting read...more Luther stories please Mr Cross!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love Luther!, 18 May 2013
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This review is from: The Calling: A John Luther Novel (Kindle Edition)
Gripping, twisted story with brilliant character's. Nice to have the back story from the tv series.. I can't wait for series 3!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Insight to the TV Series, 14 April 2013
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This review is from: The Calling: A John Luther Novel (Kindle Edition)
Really pleased I purchased the book as it gives a good insight into John Luther as it leads right in to the TV series which I will probably now re watch in preparation for Series 3 later this year. Can't wait. Now What !!!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Calling Card, 22 Nov 2012
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I'm regarding this superb book as a calling card from Neil Cross. He's here and here to stay with his Luther series in novel form. OK we all love Luther the TV series but if he can string together a series of books then we're in second Heaven. This standalone book is perfect and confirms to me that his great TV writing can be transferred to the novel. Don't know how he will progress with this especially as this book, although standalone, is in fact a prequel to start of the Luther first series. So he'd have to skip two TV series if he was to continue with the books. Let's hope he does because the writing is just first class.
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