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The Resource Playing with fire, Peter Robinson

Playing with fire, Peter Robinson

Label
Playing with fire
Title
Playing with fire
Statement of responsibility
Peter Robinson
Creator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
Investigating a dual arson case that has claimed three lives on an English canal, Detective Inspector Banks teams up with fellow investigator Annie Cabot and discovers that the victims are linked to an art forgery operation
Member of
Storyline
Tone
Writing style
Character
Review
  • /*Starred Review*/ One of the great things about Robinson’s long-running series set in Yorkshire and starring two canny detectives is the way his main characters, Alan Banks (now Detective Chief Inspector) and his sidekick and sometime lover Annie Cabbot (now Detective Inspector), change and grow (or suffer), both professionally and personally. Unlike many procedural writers, Robinson doesn’t have his characters hang on to rigid identities; these are primarily novels of character. They’re also strong on atmosphere and police procedure--this latest bringing the intricacies of arson investigation to the Yorkshire Dales. Fire destroys two canal barges. Bodies, one of a young female heroin addict, the other of an ambitious artist, are discovered on each barge. The reader is treated to the choreography of Banks’ adroit questioning of suspects, a clear view of police procedure, and a mystery that widens from the funky inhabitants of the canal banks to a set of complex relationships and art-world treacheries. The two worlds of the victims, both marred by personal failure, intersect in intriguing ways. Just having Banks back, brooding over a case as he sips his Laphroaig Scotch and listens to jazz, is reason to celebrate. Robinson has won just about every mystery award there is (including the Edgar, the Agatha, the New York Times Notable Book Award, and Le Grand Prix de Litterature Policier). His latest shows why. -- Connie Fletcher (BookList, 11-15-2003, p580)
  • Edgar winner Robinson's 14th police procedural to feature Yorkshire DCI Alan Banks isn't quite up to the level of last year's superlative Close to Home , but it's nonetheless an engaging pleasure. Three victims have died in two suspicious fires: Tom McMahon, an eccentric, mostly unsuccessful local artist; Tina Aspern, a young heroin addict estranged from an abusive stepfather; and Roland Gardiner, another down-and-out chap but one who just happens to have a fireproof safe containing a substantial amount of cash and what appears to be a Turner watercolor. To solve the crimes, Banks and his team—DI Annie Cabbot and the refreshingly direct DC Winsome Jackman—pursue good old-fashioned police work, interviewing witnesses, neighbors, relatives and lovers and sifting through the evidence gathered by their specialist colleagues. They also make ample use of contemporary forensic technology. In keeping with the moody and introspective Alan Banks, the narrative style is tempered and deliberate, perhaps too much so for those who prefer, say, the riveting urgency of a Michael Connelly thriller. Characterization is Robinson's real strength. Virtually every character is etched with care, precision and emotional insight. With each book, the quietly competent Alan Banks gets more and more human; like red wine, he gets better and more interesting with age. (Jan. 20) Forecast: A nine-city author tour and a rave from Stephen King, who rarely blurbs these days, can only help solidify the Toronto-based Robinson's niche in the U.S. market. --Staff (Reviewed December 15, 2003) (Publishers Weekly, vol 250, issue 50, p56)
  • Among the best British police procedurals published today are entries in Robinson's Inspector Banks series. Not only does each novel feature a complex and intriguing plot set against the harshly beautiful Yorkshire landscape, but each also details the emotional and psychological development of the author's melancholic hero. In this 14th outing, Banks and Annie Cabot, his associate and former lover, investigate an arson fire that destroyed two canal barges and left two charred corpses. Banks and Annie must determine who was the intended victim: Thomas McMahon, a failed artist, or Tina Aspern, a teenaged heroin addict who had fled an abusive stepfather. A second firey death a few days later leads the duo to uncover an art forgery scheme involving the great British painter J.M.W. Turner. Meanwhile, Banks finally confronts his ex-wife, who has given birth to another man's baby, and also grapples with his jealousy over Annie's involvement with an art expert hired to consult on the case. Robinson has once again penned an enthralling read. Strongly recommended for most mystery collections.[Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 10/15/03.]—Wilda Williams, "Library Journal" By Jackie Cassada, Asheville Buncombe Lib. Syst., NC --Wilda Williams (Reviewed December 15, 2003) (Library Journal, vol 128, issue 20, p172)
  • Everyone in Eastvale, it seems, has something to hide when DCI Alan Banks tackles a nasty case that combines arson and art fraud.The burning of two boats, along with low-flying painter Tom McMahon and druggie Tina Aspern, raises questions right from the start. Which of the rickety barges they were squatting on was the firebug's primary target? And why did Andrew Hurst, the fussy local collector who reported the blaze, bicycle out from his shack to watch it before phoning the firefighters? But Hurst is only the first of a parade of suspicious characters. There's Leslie Whitaker, the used bookseller who piously insists he doesn't know a thing about the Turneresque watercolors Tom was turning out on antique paper he bought from Whitaker. There's Danny Boy Corcoran, Tina's drug connection. There's troubled Mark Siddons, the remorseful day laborer who'd quarreled with Tina and left her alone on the boat, and there's Dr. Patrick Aspern, the chilly stepfather she'd accused of driving her from home by abusing her repeatedly. Even Phil Keane, the London art authenticator who's been dating Banks's colleague and ex-lover DI Annie Cabbot, starts to look suspicious to the jealous Banks. Whom can he trust to tell the truth about this hydra-headed case?As in Close to Home (2003), Robinson's customary insight into the wavering line between normalcy and unblinking evil is intensified by a sins-of-the-fathers fatalism. P.D. James, meet Ross Macdonald. (Kirkus Reviews, December 1, 2003)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
121731
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorDate
1950-
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Robinson, Peter
Dewey number
823/.914
Index
no index present
Literary form
fiction
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
Series statement
Inspector Alan Banks mysteries
Series volume
0014
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Banks, Alan
  • Banks, Alan
  • Police
  • Arson
  • Arson
  • Police
  • Yorkshire (England)
  • England
Label
Playing with fire, Peter Robinson
Instantiates
Publication
Copyright
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
475879
Dimensions
24 cm
Edition
First edition.
Extent
354 pages
Isbn
9780060198770
Lccn
2003056569
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9780060198770
  • (OCoLC)52542225
Label
Playing with fire, Peter Robinson
Publication
Copyright
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
475879
Dimensions
24 cm
Edition
First edition.
Extent
354 pages
Isbn
9780060198770
Lccn
2003056569
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9780060198770
  • (OCoLC)52542225

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