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The Fine Art of Invisible Detection by Robert Goddard

“The last book we read, The Thursday Murder Club, was so joyous that anything we read next was going to come up short. That said I really enjoyed this. I found all the different characters a bit complicated to start with but became very fond of the main protagonist. I really appreciated that that the lead character was a nondescript middle-aged woman. The writing was excellent and the characters very well-drawn. If I have a criticism it’s that there were a lot of characters and it was sometime difficult to weave it all together and work out where they all fitted in. Details of the actual crime could have been introduced earlier in the plot. Overall I really enjoyed it even though thrillers aren’t my favourite genre. There was none of the gore or violence against young women which you often see in the  genre which was good. Found it utterly believable. Would recommend it and am rereading it already.”

“I listened to it – the narrator did a great job with all the different characters and the Japanese pronunciation. I enjoyed the snippets of Japanese culture, naming conventions etc. Made it interesting without being overwhelming. I enjoyed the section set in Iceland and could really picture where they were. Generally the locations were all very well described. Thought it was plausible and liked the fact that the main character was a lady of a certain age from a very polite culture. I wanted to keep reading and find out what was going to happen. I liked it.”

” I have read a lot of this author’s books and they are quite formulaic. I realised as soon as Nick was introduced that he was going to be the character with an ordinary like who was suddenly going to become the centre of the drama. Japanese element was different. I enjoyed the first part of the book but there were too many characters and  I didn’t really care. I found the main character a bit unbelievable. She had no emotional reaction to anything and nothing seemed to phase her at all. The last quarter of the book, when everything was coming together was more enjoyable. I didn’t see the twist at the end coming at all which was great.”

“Found it a bit dull. Too many characters and I didn’t find the main character that believable. Despite the massive change in her day to day life and the events happening around her, there were no internal or external emotional responses at all. Too much plot and not enough character development for me and I didn’t invest in any of the characters. I stopped caring about what the crime was, who was involved and why. Thought the twist was a classic technique of the genre and a but predictable.”

“I found it quite formulaic. Didn’t engage me emotionally but I didn’t feel that I needed to like any of the characters either. There wasn’t much depth to the characters. It was interesting but not gripping.”

Overall score: 6.2

Range: 5 – 7.5

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