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on 15 September 2016
I finished reading Missing by Ed James yesterday, another fantastic book by Mr James. Missing stars a different but no less intriguing detective, and I was surprised and pleased with the appearance of Cullen in the story. Although not the main charachters in Missing, Ed paints a different side to Cullen's character which led me back to this series.

I first read Ghost in the Machine, back when it was released in 2012/13?. I quickly became addicted to the series and devoured each new book as soon as they became available. Knowing that Ed was taking a break from the series gave me a modicum of separation anxiety from Cullen who had kept me locked in for so long. Finding him in Missing made we want to do something I have probably only done with 2 other authors EVER, and that is reread a book. My original purchase of Ghost in the Machine, (one of my first ever purchases back when I only had kindle on my phone) was just waiting to be downloaded and my rediscovery of Cullen and indeed Ed James as a brilliant author, has commenced.

I think I enjoyed this book even more the second time around and I am now preparing to go in to lock down, whilst I continue on with the series 1 book after another. Ahh bliss.

Ed James is a great author who takes tartan noir to a different level. X
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on 23 November 2016
A woman goes missing and is then found dead. Her ex husband becomes a likely suspect. Then it happens again with the same m.o and things are not quite so straightforward. Who is the mystery man on " schoolbook" and why and how are these women specifically being targeted. At 50% of the way through I thought they had it almost wrapped up, but then comes along a new piece of evidence to turn things aound.
A good story with excellent characters. Some light hearted moments too which in my book are good. Cullen we get to know both professionally and personally, that said his personal life is rather at a dead end, pardon the pun. He comes across realistically- no superhero, just a conscientious, hardworking cop who has his ups and downs like the rest of us. A very entertaining read.
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on 30 November 2012
A very well written police procedural novel set in and around Edinburgh that may well lead to comparisons with the likes of Mark Billingham and Ian Rankin and in my opinion those comparisons would be well deserved.

What starts out as a missing person case quickly becomes a hunt for a serial murderer. The trail leads to several dead ends and red herrings. The chief has his eye on a possible promotion and is wanting to close the case quickly, convinced he knows who the guilty party is but DC Scott Cullen isn't as certain. Can he find the killer before the wrong man is arrested and charged? Or is the chief right all along?

Cullen, the star of this story is no high flying detective, just a lowly DC which makes for a refreshing change and as a character he comes across well.

The killer is picking his victims via Schoolbook, a Facebook like online site for meeting people you knew at school, which asks the question "how well do you really know the people you meet on the 'net".

As a first novel this was a highly enjoyable and accomplished effort. The next of the Scott Cullen novels "Devil in the Detail" is high on my 'to read pile'
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on 3 August 2014
I love crime novels and this one was one of my favourites. This book set in Edinburgh with current references and glimpses into Scott Cullen's less than perfect personal life was captivating. Scott has no fatal flaw, or tragic past, he is just is an ordinary guy with the usual distractions. The lazy and bored co-workers rang a bell with me and the frustration of just trying to get the job done when others are in charge is not limited to the Police. The story was very well set out and had believable characters. I liked the all the technical background as part of the storyline and the inclusion of real institutions and places.

I will definitely be reading more from this author, I want to know what happens next.
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on 2 November 2013
Best free book I have read so far. Very well plotted, with a hero Cullen I could relate to and was rooting for all the way through the book. His weaknesses made him more human and rounded out his character well. Many ties reading this I was tempted to punch Bain in the face myself. Interesting potential love interest to follow into the next book. Off to buy the next one in the series. A free download is a good way of bringing yourself to the attention of a reader. Scary and topical. I loved it
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on 29 June 2017
I can honestay say that I have never enjoyed a writer as much as Ed James. He was new to me, but as soon as I finish one book, I download the next, usually in the middle of the night.
The plots are excellent, and despite knowing Scott Cullen will win in the end, what he has to go through is amazing. How many times has he damaged his shoulder! ! Oh yes, every book.
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on 5 June 2017
Scottish detective story - says it all really. We have come to expect a certain approach in this genre, rather gritty, leavened with humour, uncertain relationships. Having said that, I quite enjoyed the book and would happily read another one in the series.
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on 3 June 2017
This is my first ed James book and I was pleasantly taken on a crime rollercoaster, I thoroughly enjoyed it. It did dry up at some parts but it was more symbolizing the grim lack of evidence which would be expected. I will be saving this author for future reads.
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on 26 September 2012
Ed James introduces DC Scott Cullen in this well crafted new police procedural, Ghost in the Machine. Working out of Edinburgh's fictitious Leith Walk police station, Scott and his colleagues initially track a missing woman but this turns into a hunt for a killer who seems to be targeting young women through their use of social media sites. The author uses his IT knowledge to the full as the tale twists and turns satisfactorily, taking one or two wrong turnings, before its exciting conclusion.
Ed James obviously knows his Edinburgh backdrop well and effectively weaves fabricated locations with existing City landmarks. Scott and his colleagues are well rounded characters with the exception of his grumpy, self-serving boss, DI Bain, who is a bit of a caricature. My only real criticism would be the idiomatic speech patterns of some of the more minor characters, presumably added to lend local authenticity. To me these are unnecessary and, frankly, annoying, ken? With a more believable officer in charge and less colloquialisms I'd definitely have given this five stars and overall, this is a very promising first outing for Scott Cullen who has the potential to go far ... I look forward to more.
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on 29 May 2017
Ed James does it again! My new favourite author. I really enjoyed DCI Fenchurch 1-3 so thought I'd give DC Cullen a chance, it did not disappoint
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