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The Shadow Collector (Wesley Peterson) Hardcover – 7 Feb 2013

4.6 out of 5 stars 51 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Piatkus (7 Feb. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0749958014
  • ISBN-13: 978-0749958015
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 3.3 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 82,891 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Kate Ellis skilfully weaves crimes of past and present into a seamless narrative...The plotting is intricate and the finale totally unexpected. Scotsman" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

The 17th Wesley Peterson crime novel . . . and they just get better and better!

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This was my first encounter with Kate Ellis’ and her Wesley Peterson crime novels. In almost all respects I thoroughly enjoyed this story with its labyrinthine plot and multitude of suspects. I found it a real page-turner and look forward to experiencing more of what Ms. Ellis has to offer.

As crime novels go, I imagine this would be classed as relatively genteel, a far cry from the hard-boiled school. Likewise its central characters are lacking the flaws and frailties common to the detectives etc. of so many such stories. Indeed, they are perhaps, almost too good to be true, even a trifle colourless, certainly in comparison with Benjamin Black’s Quirke or M R Hall’s Jenny Cooper for example. Nonetheless, a wealth of secondary characters certainly compensate by virtue of their eccentricities. There is no lack of colour in the novel and the author sustains tension at a high level throughout.

Witchcraft is not the most original device for creating a sinister atmosphere and I’m not sure how much the historical passages add to the narrative, but after a rather tentative and over-familiar opening, I found myself more and more gripped as the novel twists towards its climax. Kate Ellis can certainly write and is clearly prolific, so I have plenty to catch up with. Recommended.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As always Kate Ellis manages to weave multiple timeline tales into a single intriguing plot. Ellis brings to life the country lanes, the country farms and pubs of Devon and throws in several murder mysteries into the story to keep the reader guessing at all times.
In this novel the present timeline focusses on a police investigation of a reporter who is brutally stabbed, causing Wesley Peterson and team to investigate. The investigation leads the team to another timeline, 20 years in the past, which involved the murder of two teenage girls (supposedly by a village witch and her mother). This storyline then vaguely ties in with a third timeline which brings in the archaeological side to the novel, this timeline features the story of a suspected witch (named Allison Hadness) who was hanged during the English civil war.
The archaeological timeline I did feel was slightly weak in substance. I think normally Kate Ellis portrays a very strong story as part of her historical timeline. In this case although the witchcraft issue was the conjoined link, the story seemed to include a lot of other more detailed elements such as the sick old man Allison had married and the impending invasion and not so much on the witchcraft theme or even the historic character Allison.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed Ellis's writing style, her dialogue and settings are superb. It is also fantastic to see how the core characters (Wesley, Neil, Gerry etc) are developing throughout the series. Another great read.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Time slip stories can be complicated and simultaneous mysteries such as Ellis specialises in need tight control. She's a past master at this genre. There's a plethora of suspects and the reader has to process a lot of evidence, red herrings, side-stepping and detail. This probably surpasses her previous Wesley Peterson mysteries but it was only after finishing the novel that I worked out the intricacies of this one. Who would have guessed? Pam is lightening up a bit despite Michael becoming an adolescent and Della causing trouble as usual. I'm still concerned about Wesley's diet - far too many take-outs, not good for Gerry at all, and Wesley is becoming an absent father. Will he regret this?
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By Damaskcat HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 8 Aug. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A convicted murderer is released from prison on licence and returns to the scene of the murders. Nearby a television company is filming a new reality series on a farm when an unknown young woman is found dead in a field on the farm. Neil Watson - the archaeologist and friend of Wesley Peterson - is observing a house restoration and making some interesting finds one of which seems to be having an evil influence on him.

This is a well written mystery which links the distant past - seventeenth century; the less distant past - eighteen years ago and the present. All are interlinked and influencing present day events. There are elements of police procedural and elements of archaeology in this atmospheric crime novel.

All this fascinating series have interesting backgrounds and the series characters are developing well. I do like the way all the police characters get on well together - which makes a change when compared with many police series.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Oh dear indeed. Am I the only person to find this a little well, dull? I have read and enjoyed many of Ms Ellis's novels and enjoyed them but my expectations of this were quite high given the witchcraft involvement etc. It was a pleasant read, a little predictable dare I say and I had worked everything out well before the end so no surprises there. I have to say I had this on order so am not the sort to go buying books without due thought and therefore feel entitled to be a bit grumpy.It's not all bad though, the stories heading up each chapter from events in the past were so much more interesting and I would have really enjoyed reading more about them. Not for me this one sadly, I hope her next will be worth the wait, sorry.
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