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Friend of the Devil [Paperback]

Peter Robinson
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Aug. 26 2008
On a cliff edge overlooking the North Sea, a quadriplegic woman in a wheelchair stares unseeingly at the waves. She had been murdered. And, miles away, in a storeroom in the Maze, a medieval warren of yards and alleys at the heart of Eastvale, Yorkshire, a young woman lies sprawled on a heap of leather scraps. She too has been murdered. Their bodies are discovered at about the same time that DI Annie Cabbot, on secondment to the Eastern Area force, wakes with a severe hangover in the bed of a young man she barely recognizes. From these three strands, Peter Robinson weaves his latest complex and compelling story.

While DCI Alan Banks tries to figure out how anyone was able to murder Hayley Daniels, when the closed-circuit cameras trained on the entrances to the Maze show that no one preceded or followed her into its shadows, Cabbot learns two things that make her blood run cold: the real intentions of her one-night stand and the true identity of the quadriplegic woman. A ghost from the past is back to haunt both her and Banks.

Peter Robinson’s Inspector Banks novels are among the best detective fiction in the world, and their multi-layered stories continue to surprise, engross, thrill, and delight readers. Friend of the Devil is a superb showcase of how deftly he balances horror with humour, police procedures with the nuances of all-too-human emotions, and endings with the promise of new starts. Once again, Robinson transcends the usual limits of the genre in this dazzling novel about the obsessive power of vengeance.

From the Hardcover edition.

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Friend of the Devil + Gallows View: The First Inspector Banks Novel
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From Amazon

Fans of Kate Atkinson's Jackson Brodie novels will love Peter Robinson's smart and absorbing Friend of the Devil. Be sure to set aside some time to dig in--you'll be tempted to devour it in one sitting, but this gripping and finely plotted mystery deserves to be savored. If this is your first introduction to the intrepid Inspector Alan Banks, count yourself lucky--Robinson has been crafting these award-winning police procedurals for more than two decades now. --Daphne Durham --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. In Robinson's stunning 17th suspense novel to feature DCI Alan Banks (after 2006's Piece of My Heart), Banks and his on-again-off-again partner and lover, Det. Insp. Annie Cabbot, race to piece together a string of brutal murders. While on loan to a sister precinct, Cabbot investigates the gruesome death of a paraplegic woman found on a desolate cliff with her throat slit. Back in Eastvale, North Yorkshire, Banks and his team discover the body of a young woman who has been raped and strangled in a shady area of town known as the Maze. At first, there are no obvious connections between the two attacks, but when Cabbot uncovers the chilling identity of the woman on the cliff, she and Banks must once again confront sadistic serial killers Terry and Lucy Payne, last seen in Aftermath (2001). Banks and Cabbot are flawed but empathetic heroes, and readers will be on the edge of their seats as the two explore not only the depths of human depravity but also their own murky relationship. 7-city author tour.(Jan.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Riveting Thriller Nov. 12 2007
By Nicola Mansfield HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
A quadriplegic is found with her throat slit on the beach and at the same time a young girl is found raped and murdered behind a local pub. As the police follow the individual cases, the author skillfully spins a web that brings these two unrelated crimes together. This the first book by Peter Robinson that I have read but it most certainly will not be the last. This is a smart, intelligent British detective novel. Even though I am a stranger to Inspector Banks, I felt as though I was meeting with an old friend. I found Banks to be a deep, multi-layered character and reminiscent of Inspector Morse. I actually found myself putting this book down as I was reading it, simply because I didn't want it to end. I wanted to stay within it's pages as long as possible. It has been a very long time since a book has affected me that way. Highly recommended! Now I must go back and start this series from the beginning.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Best enjoyed in the context of his earlier work AFTERMATH, Peter Robinson's FRIEND OF THE DEVIL is a stunning addition to his British police detective series. Not only does the reader glimpse more of the unfolding dynamics between the main characters, but also, the case hearkens back to the past as new murders challenge both the detectives and the reader to look at the past through a different perspective.

Detective Chief Inspector Alan Banks and Detective Inspector Annie Cabbot investigate a series of chilling murders. Cabbot investigates a brutal and chilling murder of a parapalegic woman in a wheelchair while Banks investigates the brutal murder and rape of a woman found in The Maze. Although these crimes seem unrelated, the murders provoke both Banks and Cabbot to look into their own histories to past crimes that have touched their lives. The eerie murder of the mysterious woman in the wheelchair haunts the imagination as the detectives ponder the thoughts a woman unable to defend herself or even voice a protest in her last moments. The first layer of clues unraveled is only one layer to this finely constructed suspenseful mystery. When Banks' investigation solves the mystery of one crime detail of the rape and murder, more mysteries emerge. Will the security cameras around the Maze aid or complicate this investigation? Each clue, each new development twists and turns the investigation, keeping the reader in suspense until the final dramatic scene.

FRIEND OF THE DEVIL explores the ambiguity in the relationship between Detective Chief Inspector Alan Banks and Detective Inspector Annie Cabbot.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Read! July 20 2009
A well written and entertaining mystery indeed. It's only my second Robinson book but I'm now hooked on his style and characters and will definitely be buying more.

It's not necessary to read "Aftermath" before "Friend of the Devil" however I would strongly recommend it; you'll grasp so much more if you do.

Two thumbs up for this one!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Center Stage, Annie Cabbot March 12 2008
By Ted Feit TOP 500 REVIEWER
Two weeks after she has been on loan from the Western Area HQ Eastvale police station to the Spring Hill police station in the Eastern Area, Annie Cabbot is assigned the murder investigation of a woman found in her wheelchair at the edge of a cliff, with her throat slit. At first appearing to be about 40 years old, she is soon found to have been only 28, a quadriplegic who had been a resident in a care home nearby to the murder site. At the same time, Inspector Alan Banks, Annie’s one-time lover, is investigating the brutal rape and murder of a 19-year-old girl in Eastvale. The investigations of the two cases are juxtaposed in alternating sections, with the lines at times conjoining.

Further inquiries in the “Wheelchair Murder,” as it is dubbed by the press, result in the realization that the dead woman was involved in an infamous case six years earlier [and the subject of an earlier book], with which Cabbot and Banks were deeply involved, and the case immediately becomes much more complex. An underlying theme is “the secrets and burdens people carry around with them,” and their memories.

All the favorite elements of this wonderful series are present here: The terrific writing, evocative descriptions of the English landscape and cityscape, Banks’ indulging in his regular pint or glass of wine [general over-indulgence in alcohol palpable throughout], the marvelous backdrop of music by Bill Evans, Coltrane and Monk, among others. What is different in this newest series entry is the emphasis on the character and personality of Annie Cabbot. Although Banks is the usual protagonist, and an always fascinating one he is, allowing Annie to take her equal place at center stage here only adds one more dimension to this always excellent series.
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