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In a Dry Season (Inspector Banks Novels) Paperback – 1 Jul 2000

4.7 out of 5 stars 187 customer reviews

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Paperback, 1 Jul 2000
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Product details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Avon Books; Reprint edition (July 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0380794772
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380794775
  • Product Dimensions: 10.6 x 3 x 17.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (187 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,753,372 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Amazon Review

On the outs with their superiors, Detective Inspector Banks and Detective Sergeant Annie Cabbot are lumbered with a case that is supposed to frustrate and annoy them--and find the challenge fascinating. When a reservoir dries out, a flooded village emerges and a boy finds a skeleton buried in an outhouse--by solid police work, and the use of experts, Banks and Cabbot find out who she was and when she died, and then have to find out why. The reader knows more than they do of course--elderly crime writer Vivien has written her own account of what happened during World War Two when she was an intense unhappy teenager, and this is presented in alternate chapters--but there are surprises still in store... An intense sense of period and a celebration of the virtues of solid investigation, this admirable combination of the police procedural and the psychological period thriller was nominated for the Edgar, the US crime writers' best of the year award. Peter Robinson's acute portrayal of his flawed, humane detectives and the charismatic doomed victim the truth of whose death they are trying to uncover has a desperate sadness which comes together in a climax of unexpected power. --Roz Kaveney --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


"A wonderful novel. From Peter Robinson's deft hand comes a multi-layered mystery woven around the carefully detailed portraits of characters all held tightly in the grip of the past." -- Michael Connelly, " New York Times" bestselling author of" Blood Work""Able plotter and smooth stylist that he is, Robinson is above all a gifted creator of fully fleshed and vividly presented characters...He creates a suspenseful novel with many of the dynamic qualities of more literary fiction." --" Seattle Post-Intelligencer""Richly layered...Fans of P.D. James and Ruth Rendell who crave more contemporary themes than either master has provided of late should look no further than Peter Robinson." --" Washington Post Book World"

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Re : IN A DRY SEASON by Peter Robinson...
'In a dry season' is probably the most involving novel I have read since 'Black Dog' by Stephen Booth. The characterisation totally enchanting and the plot just sucks you in, but at all times there is this subtle menace, just shimmering on the surface, like the petroleum rainbow on a greasy puddle.
This is my first Inspector Alan Banks novel, and will not be my last, as I have just picked up 'COLD IS THE GRAVE' and then I must read 'AFTERMATH', so please forgive me if some of the back-story on Banks is somewhat fuzzy. Alan Banks is a wonderful character, middle aged angst and cynicism, and just enough lack of respect for authority that makes a great series character. Separated, starting a new life with a real tosspot of a boss ACC Jimmy Riddle, Alan Banks is given a blind-alley of a case, the investigation of a skeleton found in a drained reservoir. The skeleton dates from WW2, and an involving case (partially told in first person by one of the protagonists).
From here the story is woven like a fabric carpet, between Banks's life and the investigation vis-a-vis the story of the Skeleton from the past.
Wonderful, Wonderful and totally bewitching, with an ending that just zaps you totally. I read this book slowly firstly as I was/am still suffering from this head-cold, but also to savour Robinson's mastery of the English language. I had figured all the possible endings, and was not surprised at the close, but more amazed at how he pulled it off so deftly.
The real mystery is how I had not discovered Inspector Banks before !
Well done Mr Robinson...
I can not recommend this book highly enough, world-class and extremely moving with something to say about the human condition and relationships.
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Format: Paperback
I had never heard of Peter Robinson until I saw the spec on Amazon. I believe without a shadow of a doubt that Mr Robinson is very understated and sadly unknown author. He is a literary genius in my books (Excuse the pun!) In A Dry Season is a fantastic tale of morals, sisterly love and devotion set throughout world war two. When I found out the book was in the shadow of the war, I thought I would easily become bored and disinterested. However, the similies, description and the intensity of feeling are as real as if you were actually there. The storline is involved and thoroughly believeale. A heartfelt and honest book which I could not put down. Peter Robinson should be very proud of himself and YOU SHOULD DEFINITELY BUY IT!!!
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By Damaskcat HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 24 Dec. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A reservoir in the Yorkshire Dales which was created in the 1950s by flooding a valley including a small village dries up in a long hot summer revealing the ruins of the houses and a skeleton. DCI Alan Banks, whose career is in the doldrums thanks to some unorthodox actions of his own and a chief constable who has taken a dislike to him, is tasked with investigating the case. It soon becomes clear that the skeleton couldn't have been put there any later than when the reservoir was created but some of the people involved, if it was murder, could still be alive.

This is a gripping mystery which mixes narratives from the past and from the present. The reader has to work out how the narrative from the past fits with the evidence discovered in the present. Considering the past is narrated by a writer of fiction, maybe there isn't as much truth in it as the writer would like the reader to believe.

Well written with believable and interesting characters, I found I had to keep reading until all had been revealed. I had worked out some of it but as ever this author continues to surprise me with ingenious solutions. I love the Yorkshire background to this series and I would recommend them to anyone who likes police procedural crime novels without too much violence.
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Format: Paperback
Robinson is a "new" author to me and I thoroughly enjoyed this murder mystery which reminded me of Barbara Vine/Ruth Rendell in its fidelity to character. Generally Robinson avoids plot contrivances. If I have a complaint it is with some of the single dimensional characters and although I like the two main protagonists Banks and Cabbot, and realise that they are destined to be attracted to each other (as the formula demands), it does happen a bit hastily. That said there are other interesting romantic tensions which keep the reader guessing almost as much as the murder enquiry which deals with a skeleton dating from 1944 whose identity they have to discover. The solution unfolds steadily from two angles (the present investigation and an old diary by one of the suspects) without any real shocks and, while there is a bit of a twist at the end, there is a predictable but satisfying denouement. The period detail is great, the procedural bits are convincing enough and there is some good dialogue. Enjoyable possibly because it is quite unmelodramatic and unlike the staple American stuff. If you like this I can recommend Barbara Vine's "Asta'a Book" or "River of Darkness" by Rennie Airth.
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Format: Paperback
This was on someone's list with other books I've enjoyed and the initial interest for me was that it was about a flooded village as I knew of the Lady Bower Reservoir near Sheffield which is similar.

Within 3 pages I was engrossed. The dual timeline is nicely done as you get to know the characters more and the war aspect was interesting. It's nicely written and I've since bought more of his books. However, I have to agree with other reviewers that although the story was interesting, the references to the cd collection were tedious and I began to skip over them after the first few.

I also thought the ending was a bit strange and felt as if the writer must have had a few more pages to fill but maybe that's just me... Nonetheless, an enjoyable read.
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