The Red Road (Alex Morrow Novels) Audio CD – Audiobook, 25 Feb 2014
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"Mina paints an overwhelmingly powerful picture of child abuse and the legacy that blights the lives of its victims for ever. Rose is brilliantly drawn - she's vulnerable but not pathetic, bubbling with rage yet desperate for someone, anyone to love her." (RADIO TIMES)
A brilliantly plotted tale that segues between past and present, The Red Road is a "tartan noir" police procedural to rival Ian Rankin's best work, as Mina blends the harsh realities facing Glasgow's underprivileged kids with the salubrious world inhabited by the city's legal and financial wizards. The chief appeal, however, is Alex Morrow herself, a meticulously crafted character of depth and substance who succeeds in a patriarchal environment by virtue of her intelligence, persistence and humanity. (IRISH TIMES)
Mina is a dab hand at constructing complex reads in which corruption permeates all levels of society and no one is left untainted, and THE RED ROAD is no exception: unsentimental, unsettling, and very, very good. (GUARDIAN)
This hugely engrossing tale of murder, corruption and lies in Glasgow manages to successfully tackle the political as well as the personal and might be Mina's finest novel. (METRO)
Mina's crime novels are doing for Glasgow what Rebus did for Edinburgh: these fine mysteries also dig into the life of a city. (MAIL ON SUNDAY)
"Mina continues to enthrall with her astute perceptions and descriptions of Glasgow's underbelly... Her novels tell you more about the crime landscape of Glasgow than a host of sociological surveys." (Marcel Berlins TIMES - Books of the Year 2013)
The plot is as compelling as it is intricate. Denise Mina grows in assurance and becomes more accomplished with every book; and this one is a cracker, beautifully worked-out, every scene serving a purpose... I suggest you may want to go back to savour the details, for this is that rare thing, a crime novel that invites, and benefits from, a second reading. (Allan Massie SCOTSMAN)
The Glasgow author's 11th novel and her fourth to feature DI Alex Morrow is one of my favourite current crime stories. It's a brilliant, morally complex look at child abuse, police cover-up and corruption. Uncompromising and written with real psychological depth. (THE BIG ISSUE)
Ingenious and convincing... Her [Mina's] pawky sense of humour ensures that The Red Road, instead of being depressing, is both appalling and amusing. (Mark Sanderson EVENING STANDARD)
Old sins cast long shadows in this thriller that proves Mina deserving of the praise being heaped upon her. (BELLA)
All Denise Mina's books combine good reading with interesting sociological insights... Mina has a social worker's understanding of life at the bottom of society and a fine writer's ability to bring her characters to life. (LITERARY REVIEW)
The Red Road is a finely tuned piece of work which twists and turns like a Highlands B-road, and gets you to your destination feeling breathless and ready for a tot of whisky. Recommended reading and a great addition to the library of fine crime fiction that is emanating from Scotland at the moment. (CRIME FICTION LOVER)
It is the darker edges of the novel which will live longest in the memory, the sinister elements of the sub-plots and twists, as it are these which truly drive the novel towards its gripping conclusion and will leave those who begin the book unable to resist the pull of being able to finish it in a single sitting. (CHRISHIGH.COM)
Along with being one of the finest practitioners of the criminal art, she [Mina] is also a social commentator of perception and humanity, as the new novel reminds us... disparate elements are brought together with authority, intricately drawing us into a narrative that engages with a variety of issues, all equally provocative. (Barry Forshaw INDEPENDENT) --This text refers to an alternate Audio CD edition.
A two-decade-long narrative of power, abuse and love gone horribly wrong, from Scotland's newest crime star Denise Mina. --This text refers to an alternate Audio CD edition.See all Product description
Top customer reviews
DI Alex Morrow loves her job in the Glasgow CID. Her last big case ended up with her putting her ex-partner behind bars. That put a crimp in her career, but this new case may give her some momentum. She is testifying about the sale of arms to criminals in Pakistan and is brought into another investigation about her case involving her prisoner, Michael Brown. His fingerprints are found at a recent murder, and he was in jail at the time. This could not be, and Alex needs to figure this out. What a mess she finds herself in, and her brother becomes involved in this case. Alex has one year old twins, her husband is the caretaker, and it sounds like the poor man is becoming very tired at this role. Money is tight, and Alex is busy, a woman torn between her children and her job.
On the other end is the criminal group who have become the mastermind behind the on-going gun running, money laundering in this vicinity. Moving from 1997 to the present, we are given the history of some of the people involved in this group. Their real lives and loves, and it does not stop with the criminals, as you begin to suspect some legal and police minds are in this mix. This is a fast paced novel with many characters to get to know. On the whole this is a convoluted and complicated series, and, as the last page unfolds, we wonder, will DI Alex Morrow continue in her line of work?
Recommended. prisrob 03-17-14
The Morrow novels are not whodunnits. The reader is often inside the head of the criminals, we see how they think, we are challenged to consider what we would have done in their place. In The Red Road, this is particularly true of Rose, a young girl who kills her abuser and whose life is transformed - but not in the way you might expect.
Because of the way the story is told, we always know more than Morrow, as she deals with a number of apparently unconnected cases. Our interest is in how the characters react to the unfolding investigations. The downside is that at times with this novel I felt I was treading water, waiting for Morrow to jump through the obligatory procedural hoops to catch up, but there is a further twist at the end.
Mina's novels portray a dark, morally ambiguous world. In The Red Road, we find ourselves identifying with people who we think of as bad, and unable to trust those who are supposed to be good. It is a page-turner that asks some satisfyingly complex questions. The crimes may be solved, but the reader has to decide whether justice has been done.
As so often in these Scottish detective pieces, the lead detective is an outsider with regard to office politics and has personal connections with the story that start to generate conflicts of interest. The plot itself is a little far fetched and relies on one big event that is revealed late in the piece - but seemed to be pretty obvious right from the first few chapters. The surprises as they come tend not to be surprising. The cast seems too large; everyone seems to be involved in some shape or form (I can't remember any red herrings) and seems to involve a lot of frenetic activity for fairly opaque reasons.
The depiction of the Red Road flats is evocative, if somewhat fleeting to have given the book its title. There are also atmospheric scenes on the Isle of Mull, and some of the grander houses in and around Glasgow. The characterisation is also better than average, particularly a hippy in a castle and an aristocratic defence counsel. The structure also works, with plenty of cliffhangers ending chapters to keep the pages turning quickly. But overall it is just a bit meh; you feel you've read books like it before and will read books like it again. It is too convoluted, too clever-clever and when it reaches its denouement it just feels a little bit too late.
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