18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
Not Robinson's strongest,
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This review is from: Before the Poison (Hardcover)I bought the Kindle edition of this based on my reading over the years of most of Robinson's Alan Banks stories. The basic plot of the novel is not particularly original; someone buys an empty old house, finds out that evil deeds were done there in the past, believes the wrong person was found guilty, carries out own investigation and hey-ho you have a mystery novel with plenty of ending options. For the benchmark example of how to make this type of plot work best I would suggest Colin Dexter's "The Wench is dead" is a good as any and better than most.
For me the novel plods a bit initially and didn't seem to come alive until we start to read extracts from Grace's [somewhat far-fetched] diary, written during the Second World War and detailing her experiences, both in the far east and in Normandy in the time immediately post D-Day.
But my major gripe is that the twists and turns in the plot became more and more predictable as I neared the end of the book. I was waiting for that final plot twist at the end and it just wasn't there. Sorry, Mr Robinson, I'm a genuine fan of yours, but this one seems more like a tummy-filler than a memorable meal!