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Customer reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
40
4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 6 August 2017
It was ok but will suffice
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on 4 December 2016
Give it a go. Keeps you enthralled until the end.
Would recommend this as another fab McDermid.
A good read.
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on 2 September 2017
Fantastic.cant wait for the next one
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on 11 May 2017
Val at her best could not put it down .
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on 25 July 2015
Star Struck is the sixth novel in Val McDermid's popular Kate Brannigan, Manchester-based private eye series. It’s cosy crime, and an enjoyable romp through the world of a fictitious popular TV soap that has more than a passing similarity to one we all know so well.
Intelligent, funny, street-wise P I Kate - queen of the one-liners - is employed as a bodyguard by soap star, Gloria, who has been receiving threatening letters.
The larger than life actress, like many others in this cast oF self-obsessed thespians, thrives on her regular consultations with a celebrity clairvoyant who shocks everyone when she warns of an imminent death.
Predictably, the one thing the fortuneteller fails to see in her crystal ball is her own murder.
Given this author's reputation for producing gritty, often gruesome, crime fiction, I had to keep checking the book cover to make sure this really was a Val McDermid novel. A bit different from her usual work, but it earned my four stars.
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on 28 September 1999
More often than not books and films with humorous undertones tend to get less critical acclaim. Unfairly, this also seems to be the case with Val McDermid's Lindsay Gordon and Kate Brannigan books. However, after reading the superb but very dark The Mermaids Singing, and the almost more gruelling The Wire in the Blood, fans must delighted in being able to return to the light relief of Star Struck. In Star Struck, having bought out her partner in the detective agency, Kate Brannigan has gone solo. Against her better judgement Kate agrees to become the bodyguard to Gloria Kendal, star of a television drama that has disturbing similarities to Coronation Street. Once on board, the Manchester PI gets to experience the day-to-day goings on of a television star, and also manages to clear up a spot of blackmail as well as apprehend a murderer. With Star Struck Val McDermid and Kate Brannigan have come along way. The author, having now tackled various genres of crime writing, has honed her ability to give a greater depth to the heroine she created in Dead Beat in 1992. The plotting is taught, the one-liners are funny and come fast and furious, and all the characters are three dimensional and believable. Regardless of which McDermid books you prefer, they inevitably are a great read.
Adrian Muller.
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on 19 June 2000
Star Struck is a must for anyone who has ever watched a soap opera. McDermid takes us inside the world behind the scenes and is not at all star-struck at the antics of the cast of her ficitonal soap opera. The dialogue is, as always, very realistic and often very funny indeed. And there's a clever murder mystery worked out as well when the Seer to the Stars gets bumped off without seeing it coming.
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on 20 November 2016
I'm struggling to even justify giving this one star, as I found this book dull beyond belief. Having discovered, and become a serious fan of, Val McDermid about a year ago, I can scarcely believe that this was written by her. The Tony Hill/Carol Jordan novels and the stand alones are absolutely brilliant: the characters are engaging and realistic, the plots are well thought out and well paced, and they all have that gripping, 'unputdownable' quality that makes Val McDermid such a good writer. Reading the glib and superficial style of 'Star Struck', then, was a great disappointment to me. It seems to play for laughs on virtually every line, the characters are wooden and unappealing, and the storyline is frankly boring. Val McDermid doesn't need to do this: she's a very good writer! If you haven't read any of her other novels, please, please do not be put off by this one.
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on 4 October 1999
More often than not books and films with humorous undertones tend to get less critical acclaim. Unfairly, this also seems to be the case with Val McDermid's Lindsay Gordon and Kate Brannigan books. However, after reading the superb but very dark The Mermaids Singing, and the almost more gruelling The Wire in the Blood, fans must delighted in being able to return to the light relief of Star Struck. In Star Struck, having bought out her partner in the detective agency, Kate Brannigan has gone solo. Against her better judgement Kate agrees to become the bodyguard to Gloria Kendal, star of a television drama that has disturbing similarities to Coronation Street. Once on board, the Manchester PI gets to experience the day-to-day goings on of a television star, and also manages to clear up a spot of blackmail as well as apprehend a murderer. With Star Struck Val McDermid and Kate Brannigan have come along way. The author, having now tackled various genres of crime writing, has honed her ability to give a greater depth to the heroine she created in Dead Beat in 1992. The plotting is taught, the one-liners are funny and come fast and furious, and all the characters are three dimensional and believable. Regardless of which McDermid books you prefer, they inevitably are a great read.
Adrian Muller.
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on 12 June 2016
This is the sixth (and so far the final) novel featuring Val McDermid’s appealing private investigator Kate Brannigan. In the run up to Christmas Kate has been retained to protect Gloria Kendal, one of the leading stars in ‘Northerners’, a hugely popular long-running soap opera set in the Manchester area (I wonder what that could be modelled upon!), who has been plagued with threatening poison pen letters.

Meanwhile her friend and self-defence trainer, Dennis, finds himself under arrest after a the body is found in a shop-squat he has been running. Convinced of Dennis’s innocence, despite his long track record of organised crime across the Manchester gangland, Kate undertakes to investigate to try to clear him. And it has started snowing heavily!

As always with Val McDermid, the plot is perfectly plausible and well-constructed, and the characters are utterly believable. She uses the plot to satirise the world of soap operas, and draws on her own experiences as a journalist to expose the traffic in leaked plotlines and cast members’ secrets. Brannigan is a great character: independent and tough, yet also capable of great emotional insight. Without the gory serial murders that characterise McDermid’s later works, this is a traditional detective story – well planned and well written.
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