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Good Morning, Midnight Paperback – 4 Oct 2004

4.0 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 624 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; New edition edition (4 Oct. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007123434
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007123438
  • Product Dimensions: 11.3 x 3.6 x 17.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,606,044 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Amazon Review

What a pleasure it is to be in the hands of a trusted writer. And Good Morning, Midnight is a reminder of just how good this British crime writer is. Reginald Hill's reputation has been steadily consolidated with some of the most accomplished crime writing in the UK, and his Dalziel and Pascoe novels enjoy a consistency of achievement rare in the genre, with only the occasional misstep. Of course, it's hard these days not to visualise TV actors when we begin a D and P novel, but those adaptations soon seem a world away, so much more sophisticated and atmospheric are the novels.

Here, Hill gives us his very individual gloss on a standard crime plot, one that most serious practitioners feel obliged to tackle at least once: the locked room mystery (P D James recently had a crack at the same narrative device). Pal Maciver has committed suicide in a manner similar to that of his father several years ago: the death happening in the classic locked room. Pal's stepmother Kay doesn't enjoy all the negative attention she gets after the death, and although the dependable D S Dalziel is on her side, his help is restricted by a surprising influence--nothing less than as Dalziel's partner, the intractable DCI Pascoe, who regards Kay with suspicion, despite Dalziel's sympathy and support. When a key witness, seductive provider of sexual services Madame Dolores, vanishes, things become very complicated for both detectives--particularly as Pal Maciver's death appears to have many international complications. Will the squabbling Dalziel and Pascoe be able to come to a compromise before further deaths occur?

It goes without saying that readers are in for a very enjoyable time in the company of the disputatious coppers; amazingly, Hill is able to ring fresh changes on what might have been supposed to be over-familiar material. The plotting is as mystifying as ever--just what we read D and P for, right? --Barry Forshaw --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Review

‘He is probably the best living male crime writer in the English-speaking world’ Andrew Taylor, Independent

‘Few writers in the genre today have Hill’s gifts: formidable intelligence, quick humour, compassion and a prose style that blends elegance and grace’ Donna Leon, Sunday Times

‘One of Britain’s most consistently excellent crime novelists’ Marcel Berlins, The Times

‘An increasingly lyrical and always humorous writer, he is first and foremost an instinctive and complete novelist who is blessed with a spontaneous storytelling gift’ Frances Fyfield, Mail on Sunday

‘Reginald Hill’s novels are really dances to the music of time, his heroes and villains interconnecting, their stories entwining’ Ian Rankin, Scotland on Sunday

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Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
In the mythology of British crime fiction, Superintendent Andy Dalziel is Zeus. Like Dalziel ("Dee-el"), Zeus may not be as psychologically interesting as his two divine brothers (take Rebus as earth-shaker Poseidon, Allan Banks, tenuously, as Hades, if you'll allow me to overextend this metaphor), but he is far and away the most fun, the most colourful, the most entertaining. Dalziel, politically incorrect, [very] large, and in charge of Mid-Yorkshire CID, feared lord of all he surveys, has been around for 34 years now, and in that time has helped his author get an Edgar nomination, a Gold Dagger, and a well-deserved Diamond Dagger. Dalziel is imposing, brusque, and hides a razor-sharp mind behind his jocular, vulgar image. And now, after the very disappointing Death's Jest Book, he (and Hill) are firmly, very firmly, back on top of their form. It's been wonderful to see that Hill's best work has all been written since that Diamond Dagger win: his books of late have all tested the boundaries, have all been completely different from anything else available. You get the sense that he feels his career has been validated, and now he can really get down to having some proper fun and games with his characters and his readers.
The plot is relatively straightforward at first sight, but soon, through varied familial infighting and some dark outside influences, shows its true complexity. In 1992, Pal Maciver's father Pal Maciver commits suicide in a locked room. He shoots himself at his desk with a shotgun, trigger pulled by toe. Open on the desk, a book of poems by Emily Dickinson (this is the source of the novel's title.) Ten years later, in the same house which now lies empty, Pal himself commits suicide in exactly the same way.
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Format: Hardcover
Although I wouldn't rate this quite as highly as some of the previous books - On Beulah Heights springs to mind - it was nevertheless a welcome return to form after the esoteric byways of Dialogues with the Dead and Death's Jest Book, entertaining though these companion works were. It's a relief to see the last of the irritating Frannie Roote. Reginald Hill seemed in danger of following a whimsical path that detracted from the accomplished writing that always exemplifies his work. He has developed marvellously over the years and I was delighted that Good Morning, Midnight sees him firmly back on track.
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By RachelWalker TOP 500 REVIEWER on 31 Jan. 2004
Format: Hardcover
The trinity. The three divine brothers of British crime fiction. Ian Rankin and his Rebus as Poseidon, the volatile earth-shaker. Peter Robinson and Banks as Hades, the quiet brother. Mordant, resigned. Then there is Reginald Hill and Superintendent Andrew Dalziel, (“Dee-el”) taking the part of ruler of them, Zeus. Like Dalziel, Zeus is not perhaps the most psychologically interesting of those three Greek brothers, but he is the most colourful, the most entertaining. As is Dalziel, politically incorrect, large and in charge of Mid-Yorkshire CID, undisputed and feared king of all he surveys. Imposing, brusque, he hides his sharp mind behind his blundering, vulgar image. Hill and Dalziel are back on track after Death’s Jest-Book, and this time round are on the top of their form.
The plot is relatively straightforward at first sight, but soon, though various familial infighting and some dark outside influence, shows its true complexity. In 1992, Pal Maciver’s father commits suicide in a locked room. He shoots himself at his desk with a shotgun, trigger pulled by toe. Open on the desk, a book of poems by Emily Dickinson (this is the source of the novel’s title.) Ten years later, in the same house which now lies empty, Pal himself commits suicide in an identical way to his father. The book of poetry is even open at exactly the same page.
In each instance angry fingers point toward Pal’s stepmother, the enchanting Kay Kafka (as you can see, Hill’s love of weird names is on fine display again. Here there is not only an Ethelbert, but a Cressida, and “Pal” is short for Palinurus) who, he held much animosity towards.
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Format: Hardcover
I love the Dalziel and Pascoe novels and I like wallowing in the richness of Hill's prose style. I think recent books in the series have sometimes been unduly self-indulgent however, with the use of obscure literary references more as padding than to help the plot forward or illuminate character and incident.
Good Morning Midnight seemed to me a return to the powerful story-telling form of the earlier books, and I was riveted throughout the first 95% of the novel. I may be missing something but I thought that the end was a bit of a let-down; too many loose ends untied and flat scenes closing off alternative plot-lines. A really good journey though, with a slightly dissapointing destination.
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Format: Paperback
To use a Daziel expression Richard Hill's story line on the death of the private eye Jake Gallipot is a load of b--ls. First he says the computer tower is twisted round with it's rear panel unscrewed. You cannot remove the rear panel on a computer tower. To gain access to the hard drives you need to remove the side panels. Detectives Wield and Collaboy then decide that Gallipot was probably electrocuted because he tried to remove a hard drive without turning the power off. However the maximum assessable voltage inside the computer would only be 12 volts. To electrocute oneself you would have to get inside the power supply which is totally enclosed in it's own metal box. The report from the SOCO team should have alerted the detectives to this but despite the private eye being relevant to their investigation Dalziel and Pascoe make no real attempt to investigate his murder. The whole story ends up with a load of loose ends with mysterious forces at work.
Sue-Lynn Maciver is disinherited in her husbands will he made shortly before his suicide. Richard Hill has her trying to overturn the will on grounds he was suffering from a terminal brain tumour. It is more likely she would use the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 under which a will not making reasonable provisions for a spouse can be varied. She could end up with the same settlement as if she had been divorced although I am not a lawyer.
Richard Hill needs to do more research on computers and will law.
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