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Spider Trap Paperback – 25 Jun 2009

4.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 366 pages
  • Publisher: EUROCRIME (25 Jun. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1906413371
  • ISBN-13: 978-1906413378
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 3.1 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,186,373 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


'Solid procedural suspense and a serious subtext concerning the nature of corruption make this new series stand out' - Time Out

About the Author

Barry Maitland was born in Scotland and raised in London. He studied at Cambridge and moved to Australia to become Professor of Architecture at the University of Newcastle. He has since retired to pursue his writing. Maitland's The Marx Sisters was nominated for the John Creasey Award for Best First Novel and The Malcontenta won the Ned Kelly Award for Best Crime Fiction. No Trace is his eighth Brock and Kolla mystery.

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I rather enjoyed this police procedural. It is pretty well-written and carries a good amount of intrigue to keep the reader invested. There is also little nonsense to deal with.

On the flip slide, the story is quite slow to develop and despite the pairing of a male and a female detectives as leads, I didn't feel much was done with the characterisations. Quite a large coincidence holds things together as an incident investigated by the lead detective a generation ago is connected with a current murder investigation.

No typos to speak of in the Kindle version, which was a relief.

In summary, this is a pretty good police procedural, but one which doesn't make it into the brilliant mystery category. 7/10
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Format: Paperback
Barry Maitland is the author of a series of nine crime novels so far featuring the detective team of `Brock and Kolla'. Some years ago, I remember reading one of the earlier ones, The Chalon Heads, which was set in the world of stamp collecting. A plot involving gangsters and forgers behind the philately made an otherwise potentially dry subject a rather good read, so I was looking forward to this latest one, the ninth.

Surprisingly perhaps, for a Brit who relocated to Australia in the mid 1980s, Maitland's series is set in and around London. Returning to the area where he grew up for his novels, Spider Trap is set south of the river in Lambeth. Scotland Yard's Brock and Kolla are a classic police pairing - David Brock is the mature and experienced DCI, and DS Kathy Kolla is his insightful younger colleague, working in the Serious Crime Squad (SCI).

The story starts off with the bodies of two girls being discovered in a garage; they had been shot in the head and there was evidence of crack cocaine use. It would have been put down to just another gang murder, but the local MP Michael Grant, a charismatic young Jamaican, raises the profile and the SCI are called in. A young lad at the school next door, snuck onto the wasteground near the train tracks hoping to find the gun, but instead finds a human jawbone. That discovery leads to a further three bodies being found. However, these had been buried over twenty years previously but it appears that the same weapon was used - what's the connection?

DCI Brock is ideally placed to lead the case, as he started his detective career in Lambeth.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Meticulous background detail. Well constructed
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.5 out of 5 stars 11 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good plot, but someone please fix the typos! 1 Jan. 2012
By M.Hoffman - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
Interesting setting and a bit of history about the Brixton riots in 1981. Brock and Kolla are convincing both
in the way they do their detective jobs and the way they often use work to avoid thinking too much or feeling too
much in their private lives.
I've read almost all of Matiland's mysteries and I like them (obviously) very much, but
the last two I've read on Kindle have had so many formatting and other errors they have nearly made
me stop reading to protest. In this book, every single time the writer uses the word I'll, it appears as I'llTil.
And in other words with I', there's an upper case T after the apostrophe. In addition to this, dialogue lines which
should start on separate lines run together, so you aren't sure who's talking. And there
are sentences without periods at the end, words of pure gibberish and some of the common variety of typos that editing should catch.
Surely, a major publisher would and should edit/check? On Kindle, it's still possible to go in and fix this stuff, so maybe
the publisher will see this and fix these things.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars More Maitland, please 2 Oct. 2010
By Karl R. Schuck - Published on
Verified Purchase
Maitland continues to write excellent mysteries. I started to read the series some years ago, but few of the books were available in the US. The original series was Brock and Cathy (his last name and her first name--just a tiny bit sexist) but they are more equal now, and better balanced as team mates. Wonderfully detailed atmospherics let you really feel like you've gotten to know the neighborhood setting.
5.0 out of 5 stars Suspense-filled trip through Brixton and Camberwell 4 Nov. 2013
By Miss Ivonne - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
Imagine a British John Gotti, a Teflon Kray brother, if you will; now you have Edward “Spider” Roach, a ruthless but brilliant kingpin who began in the Jamaican expat area of London known as Cockpit Lane but now preys on folks across the British Isles.

Spider Trap contains so many twists upon surprising twist that almost anything one says about it would prove a spoiler. Let’s just say that the police have been trying to nab Spider Roach and his three menacing sons for so long — and so unsuccessfully — that the higher-ups have given orders to leave them alone so as to not be humiliated — and accused of harassment — yet one more time. However, the deaths of two teenage girls leads Chief Inspector David Brock’s team to discover three more corpses in the same field — corpses of “Yardies” (Jamaican immigrants) — dating back to the 1980s, when Brock was assigned to that very area.

Spider Trap’s very title is an irony — although to explain why would be to reveal too much. As Brock gingerly begins to investigate the Roach family yet again, he hopes that, for once, he will be able to pin at least some of the murders, drug trafficking and mayhem that Spider Roach has wrought at his door. However, in the ensuing decades, Roach has cultivated the air of a legitimate businessman and his financial and social ties reach into the police department and into the very halls of Parliament. Roach fancies himself invincible. Can Brock find a chink in that armor? As the many corpses in Roach’s wake testify, Brock’s playing a very dangerous game.

Readers of course will be thrilled by the suspenseful story — one that will keep you reading late into the night. (Newcomers to the series won’t have any trouble beginning with Spider Trap.) But longtime fans of Brock and his loyal and fearless Detective Sergeant Kathy Kolla will be interested in learning more about Brock’s early career. As with all of Barry Maitland’s novels, Spider Trap provides an education to readers — particularly those of us outside of the UK; in this case, we learn so much about the violence-laden history of Jamaica and of the Jamaican diaspora to the Brixton district of South London — including the 1981 Brixton riot and the conditions that led to it. I learned so much, but it never detracted from the superb plot. Don’t miss this one!
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Police Procedural Series 13 July 2014
By Jerrold Eric Steward - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This series is excellent. The books have everything: fine writing, fast and complicated plots, satisfying mysteries, interesting characters. For me, happiness is a new Barry Maitland book.
5.0 out of 5 stars Great writer. 2 May 2013
By Debbacall - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Brilliant read. A great writer. Waiting for the next book. When is it being published? Love the fact he is Aussie and writes great thrillers based in UK.
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