Wednesday, August 28, 2019

ARC Review: The Long Call by Ann Cleeves

The Long Call
Author: Ann Cleeves
Series: The Two Rivers Series (Book 1)
Publication: Minotaur Books (September 3, 2019)

Description: In North Devon, where two rivers converge and run into the sea, Detective Matthew Venn stands outside the church as his estranged father’s funeral takes place. On the day Matthew left the strict evangelical community he grew up in, he lost his family too.

Now, as he turns and walks away again, he receives a call from one of his team. A body has been found on the beach nearby: a man with a tattoo of an albatross on his neck, stabbed to death.

The case calls Matthew back to the people and places of his past, as deadly secrets hidden at their hearts are revealed, and his new life is forced into a collision course with the world he thought he’d left behind.

From Ann Cleeves, bestselling author of Vera and Shetland, beloved by readers and TV viewers alike, comes a spectacular new series, told with deep compassion and searing insight.

My Thoughts: This story begins with Detective Matthew Venn standing outside the venue where his father's funeral is being conducted. He has long been estranged from his parents who belong to a restrictive religious sect. While there, he receives a phone call telling him of a body found on a nearby beach.

The man is discovered to be Simon Walden. As they trace back his life, they find many connections to the Woodyard which is the brainchild of Matthew's husband Jonathan. The Woodyard is a sort of community center with space for classes, a cafe where Simon worked, and a facility for the care of adults with learning difficulties. Walden has a troubled past; he was driving just under the alcohol limit and had an accident that killed a child. He chose to try to drown himself in alcohol and leave his old life behind.

Walden was taken in by Caroline Preece, who is a social worker involved with a charity for the homeless and whose father is on the board of the Woodyard, and her roommate Gaby Henry who is the artist-in-residence at the Woodyard. Other trustees include a man who is big in the church his parents belong to and a man Matthew has known since he was a child.

The story also involves some of the adults with learning disabilities. Luce Braddick who has Down's and who is friendly and happy knew Simon as the man who rode the bus home with her frequently and fed her sweets. Christine Shapland also has Down's but is much quieter. She is kidnapped shortly after Simon's death but found alive and confused.

The story shifts through a lot of viewpoints as the clues to the murderer are slowly revealed. All of the characters are well-rounded and complex. This was a promising start to a new series.

Favorite Quote:
Here it seemed hope and the possibility of redemption abounded. It made Jen feel like punching someone.
I received this one in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.

1 comment:

  1. This is my current read. I’m about 1/3 through and enjoying it.


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