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The Hermitage: A DCI Ryan Mystery (The DCI Ryan Mysteries Book 9) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 286 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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- Book 9 of 16 in The DCI Ryan Mysteries (16 Book Series)
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- File size : 1170 KB
- Word Wise : Enabled
- ASIN : B07H66BQCP
- Print length : 286 pages
- Language: : English
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Simultaneous device usage : Unlimited
- Best Sellers Rank: 836 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
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I'm going back to Ann Cleeves' Vera Stanhope for Northumberland and more realistic characters.
First of all, that ending! So beautiful! It brought a tear to my eye and put a big smile on my face. What a lovely way to end such a tense story. I am so fond of some of the characters in this series now. It does feel like catching up with friends.
I have to say I have loved the fact that this book is set in Italy also. I SO want to go there. Even more so now! I'd love a villa like Ryan's ;-) If only!
I was on the edge of my seat reading this story as Ryan fought to prove that Nathan Armstrong, despite being a famous author with a huge fan base, is actually a dangerous psychopath who has so far literally got away with murder. It was never going to be an easy task, especially with the Italian authorities not being convinced they have anything solid on Armstrong, but Ryan and his team are determined. However, they could not be prepared for what they would uncover during this investigation. Nothing is quite as it seems and each twist in the story is as shocking as the last. The truth is quite sad and highlights just how far some people will go for fame and fortune, not caring who they have to stamp on to get there. Also, how grief can consume some people until revenge seems like their only option to find peace and justice. Brilliantly written, as always. Page-turner is an understatement! I can't recommend highly enough! I can't wait to read book 10!
This story is based not only in Northumberland but also in Italy as Ryan and Anna find themselves chasing after someone who has thus far proven to be a bit of an enigma. By going so far from home, without his loyal support team, is Ryan putting both himself and Anna in danger?
The case closer to home is being handled by Ryan’s fellow officers, MacKenzie and Phillips. Will they be able to figure everything out without valuable input from Ryan, or will circumstances dictate otherwise?
This is a brilliantly told story which moves at a good pace throughout, leading to a great ending. The last two chapters in particular are so well done. A perfect end to the story.
I love this author so much and cannot wait to see what she brings us next.
This is a story which kind of sits in two parts, or at the very least two investigations. One is based on Northumberland where the boatman who works at Warkworth Castle, ferrying tourists over to the eponymous Hermitage is found murdered. The scene is a mess, animals having made the most of an unexpected feast, and it falls to DI Denise MacKenzie and DS Frank Phillips to find out just who would want to kill the old man and why he has such a mysteriously empty past. Why Denise and Frank? Well, because Ryan and Anna have flown to Florence, hot on the heals of Nathan Armstrong, a man the whole team knows has already evaded justice once and who is likely to kill again. Ryan is determined to bring an end to his games once and for all.
What I love about these books is the way in which LJ Ross brings the environment to life. Even though we don’t spend as much time in the north east as we would typically, you are still acutely aware of the landscape, of its richness and the stark contrast of the murders against such a beautifully painted backdrop. This applies equally to the part of the story, the larger part, set in Florence. Although not a natural setting for Anna, it is somewhere Ryan knows well and you really get that sense of the familiar in the way he moves around the city, while still portraying a clear picture of where we are for the reader. You learn a little more of the extent of Ryan’s past in this book too, something which takes his friends by surprise, even though they know of his personal situation. Once again the author has done a brilliant job of contrasting the opulence which surrounds Ryan with the very down to earth, determined and ultimately focused man we know and love.
With the action moving to Italy, it gives the opportunity to introduce some new, and very diverse, characters to the story. I really liked the character of Magda, the Ryan’s housekeeper, even if she appeared only fleetingly in a few scenes. She is clearly a woman with a story to tell, and a fierce sense of loyalty and understanding which you cannot help but respect. Then there is Inspector Alessandro Ricci, who is the man tasked with assisting, or rather humouring, Ryan and investigating the disappearance of a local man who may well have links to Armstrong. He is a character not wholly unlike Ryan, in some ways quite charming, if somewhat hampered by convention and rules, but he is portrayed in a way which will keep you wondering if, in a country known for its mafia connections and widespread corruption at the highest levels, he can really be trusted.
I loved that in this book Ryan, as a guest of the Italian police, cannot really act in any meaningful way in the investigation. He can only watch and advise from the sidelines, but still manages to worm his way in, bringing him front and centre and in the sights of Armstrong. His actions put him in jeopardy on more than one occasion, both personally and professionally, and he is right at the centre of one of the most heart stopping scenes in the book. This really is a cat and mouse chase between the two foes. Armstrong is charismatic, charming to those around him, but as cold hearted a sociopath as anyone Ryan has met, easily able to avoid conviction. Ryan knows this, knows the risks he is facing, and yet his determination to prove Armstrong guilty is unwavering. Exactly the reasons we all love him. Together with some help from Anna, Ryan begins to see exactly what has happened and how, it is simply a matter of proving it.
The two storylines are concluded in a surprising but satisfying way, but it is possibly the ending of the book which will have long-term fans practically purring with happiness. I’ll say no more but it has been a while coming, that’s for sure. I love the characters in this book, Ryan, Anna, Denise and Frank. They make up a perfect team and you want to read on as much for them as for the story itself. LJ Ross has created a truly enduring team that I think I could keep reading about forever, embedding them in stories which are as intriguing as they are exciting, with settings which become as much a living breathing part of the story as anything else. Brilliant stuff. Highly recommended.