Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Hanging Hill by Mo Hayder

by:  Mo Hayder
published by:  Bantam Press
publish date:  April 14, 2011

One morning in picture-perfect Bath, England, a teenage girl's body is found on the towpath of a canal: Lorne Woods - beautiful, popular, and apparently the victim of a disturbingly brutal murder. Zoe Benedict - Harley-riding police detective, independent to a fault - is convinced the department head needs to look beyond the usual domestic motives to solve the case. Meanwhile, Zoe's sister, Sally - recently divorced and in dire financial straits - has begun working as a housekeeper for a rich entrepreneur who quickly begins to seem possibly dangerous. When Zoe's investigation turns up evidence that Lorne's attempts to break into modeling had delivered her into the world of webcam girls and amateur porn, a crippling secret from Zoe's past seems determined to emerge.

Hanging Hill was my random audiobook pick of the week.  At first, it was very slow going and I was seriously considering adding it to the DNF list.  I stuck it out and in the end it was worth it. 

Sally was not my favorite character.  She's recently divorced and struggling to make it on her own.  I get that.  However, I was annoyed at her constant rejection of help.  She wouldn't take help from her friends, she wouldn't accept their advice to sell her tarot cards (until the end of the book), she wouldn't accept help from her boyfriend.  All her rejection of help seemed to land her in deeper trouble.  It also forced her to turn to her ex-husband who was a complete jerk.  It would have been better to reject HIS help over everyone else's. 

Zoe was slightly better, but she's one of the new crop of Lisbeth Salander clones.  Gorgeous detective making her way in a man's world.  Rides a motorcycle, falls for her partner, self destructive behavior when he shacks up with someone else.  It's getting a little cliche now.

Sally and Zoe's relationship was rather interesting though, that made the book a little curious.  The mystery of whodunit was clever.  The ending was great.  I hope there isn't a sequel.  I like endings like this one that give you enough, but not everything.

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