Dark Suits and Sad Songs, Denzil Meyrick

Reviewed By
Karen Chisholm

I've been listening to the audio versions of the DCI Jim Daley series, of which this, DARK SUITS AND SAD SONGS is the 3rd outing. At this point I'd be loathe to recommend readers step into this series just anywhere as the back story to these characters, their personal trials, tribulations, affairs, rocky marriages, solid marriages, friendships, drinking problems, and the physical and psychological fall out from earlier cases, all combine to form a big part of your connection with them, and this place. Particularly with this novel, as the lead up to Daley's own boss being investigated, and the mess that he's making of his personal life are hefty elements in a story that has wider ramifications.

Part of the pleasure in listening to these novels is undoubtedly the narrator of them - David Monteath seems to have a real flair for understating the dry, sometimes quite acerbic wit. The friendships and working partnerships are a big part of these novels, although the personal aspects are probably the major focus in a way. How Daley works through the maze of his personal mess is reflected in the way he works through the maze that his professional life is increasingly trapped in. Mind you, you have to wonder at points if he's just johnny-on-the-spot or has a minor superpower in upheaval generation.

At the heart of these novels, there is an ensemble cast at work, and there's heaps of intrigue and skullduggery on all sides. I've never read one of this series - so far I've tackled them all as audible books, which does mean that my listening time has been somewhat more erratic than if I was reading. It's been very easy to keep up with who is who and where we are at in the story progression though, and all in all, I'm really still very much enjoying the DCI Daley series for what it is - a police procedural set in semi-rural Scotland, with a strong focus on the personal lives of the characters.

Year of Publication
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The third installment in the bestselling DCI Daley series, packed with accurate police procedure and gritty, dark humour. The best of Scottish crime.

When a senior Edinburgh civil servant spectacularly takes his own life in Kinloch harbour, DCI Jim Daley comes face to face with the murky world of politics. To add to his woes, two local drug dealers lie dead, ritually assassinated. It's clear that dark forces are at work in the town. With his boss under investigation, his marriage hanging on by a thread, and his sidekick DS Scott wrestling with his own demons, Daley's world is in meltdown.  When strange lights appear in the sky over Kinloch, it becomes clear that the townsfolk are not the only people at risk. The fate of nations is at stake. Jim Daley must face his worst fears as tragedy strikes. This is not just about a successful investigation, it's about survival.

Review Dark Suits and Sad Songs, Denzil Meyrick
Karen Chisholm
Monday, August 26, 2019

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