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Gallows View: The First Inspector Banks Mystery [Mass Market Paperback]

Peter Robinson
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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4.1 out of 5 stars
4.1 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars First in a Superb Series Feb. 4 2003
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Gallows View, the first Inspector Banks novel, provides a great introduction to Robinson's now well-established series. Having already read some of the later books, it is easy to see how Robinson painstakingly lays the groundwork for the subsequent novels. The characters are well thought out, given distinct and memorable personalities, and relationships are carefully established.
DCI Alan Banks, a recent transfer to the Eastvale CID, finds himself embroiled in a series of mysteries for his first major case. A number of Peeping Tom incidents leaves the women of Eastvale rather vary. To make matters worse, two teenagers appear to be carrying out a series of break-ins and vandalisms. The situation turns nasty when an elderly woman is found dead in her vandalized home.
The affable Banks finds himself personally enmeshed in the situation when the investigation hits a little too close to home. The tension grows when Banks tries to remain faithful to this wife, amid the growing attraction he feels towards another woman...
The novel has a perfect (if not slightly contrived) ending - all the different threads are neatly tied together, and the intricate details carefully explained. The readers are even left feeling somewhat sympathetic towards the criminals in this novel.
Furthermore, unlike some of the other police procedurals I've read, there appears to be far less internal tension and strife within the Eastvale CID - the police officers tend to work as a team and get along fairly well. I found this a welcome change from some of the other series where the main character appears to be constantly rubbing shoulders with his superior or junior officers.
All said, Gallows View is an excellent beginning to this superb long-lasting series, and well worth the read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars No hangings but an entertaining, informative read March 31 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
With all of the praise heaped on "In a Dry Season", the tenth in the Inspector Banks series, it seemed time to get to know the Inspector. I like to read my mysteries in series. "Gallows View" is where it begins.
Banks and his family have moved from London to a small town in Yorkshire. They're settling in well when a Peeping Tom case complicates Bank's life. To appease the local feminists, an attractive female psychologist is asked to consult. Enter the human side of Banks -- struggling with temptations. Then a series of burglaries escalates into murder in a neighborhood called "Gallows View." It may be a small town but it certainly isn't boring.
I read this book in a day. The writing is tight, the characters were genuine and the mysteries developed nicely. Robinson is a native of Yorkshire and one gets a nice sense of place. Fans of Inspectors Morse and Barnaby are likely to enjoy Banks too.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspector Banks has a tough week. Jan. 6 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is a great yarn that I completed in one sitting.Our protagonist is not only a great detective but, a likable man. He is an attractive character for all the usual reasons, (i.e...intellegence,charm,loyalty,persistance, al.), yet it is his human flaws that allowed me to care about him and understand him.They include smoking too much, drinking to escape feelings at times, and a wandering eye for the ladies.(DON'T BASH HIM TOO HARD FOR THE LAST ONE BECAUSE IT IS ONLY HIS EYE THAT WANDERS.) So much so in fact the author must have studied psychology at length. The author's knowledge of police procedures including, forensics, stake-outs, and questioning of witnesses and suspects, is absolutely dead-on perfect. This one really kept me guessing. Kudos to Mr. Robinson for making the series of crimes and the solving thereof so realistic.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Listening Twice was not enough, I want more Oct. 12 2011
By Heather Pearson TOP 500 REVIEWER
Last summer, I heard Peter Robinson read from his then new book Bad Boy. After he finished reading I knew that I had to search out his first Inspector Banks book. Luckily I was able to download the audio version from my library.

When Alan moved his family to Eastvale, in Yorkshire, he thought he would find the quiet life as compared to his previous post in London. For a while it did work that way. But as Chief Inspector he became involved in all the illegal going ons in town. At first it was a case of break and enter at a few seniors houses. Next, there were several reports of peeping toms. Banks had just arranged to work with Psychologist Jenny Fuller when was informed of a dead woman, possibly the result of another break and enter. Life was no longer seeming so peaceful in Eastvale.

I was taken in by this audio book almost from the first minutes. I didn't want to press stop. In fact, I listened to the whole book twice over and found it just as gripping the second time.

I thought that with such a busy and complicated job, Banks would keep his home life simple, and perhaps he had been doing that. That is, until he met Jenny. There is something about her that he finds highly attractive and it's not just a physical thing. He loves his wife Sandra and would never hurt her but....

With Jenny's help, he sets out to discover whether these cases could possibly be related and what type of person or persons could be committing them. Banks is a very by the books kind of police, he dots his i's and crosses his t's, and when something doesn't make sense he digs further. This is the type of story that a reader can really dig into. Lots of details to ponder.
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