Sunday, February 01, 2009

The Summer That Never Was by Peter Robinson

I am fast becoming a fan of Peter Robinson and his Inspector Banks-series. I have read a couple of them in random order and The Summer That Never Was is book number 13 in the series. If you don't know the series and want to read it, I suggest you begin with the beginning. They can be read individually, but the characters go through different things which may be good to know. But that said, they can easily stand alone.

A young boy, son of a celebrity-couple, goes missing at the same time a skeleton is dug up in another part of the country (England). The skeleton turns out to be that of Bank's friend Graham Marshall who went missing in the summer of 1965. Banks heads home after a long vacation in Greece even though he still has some weeks of vacation left. He is going to help Annie Cabbott, his ex-girlfriend who is also a detective, solving the mystery of the missing boy. On the surface it looks like a "simple" kidnapping case, and even more so as the parents of the missing boy are being told by a mysterious caller that the boy, Luke, will return home the day after he went missing. Things doesn't add up though and pretty soon it becomes a very confusing case involving more people than anticipated at first.

At the same time, Banks is also getting involved in the Graham Marshall-case. Graham disappeared in 1965 when he was 15 years old and now that his skeleton has been found, there is no doubt that he was murdered back then. It is officer Michelle Hart who is leading the investigations and she finds out that not everyone are interested in her getting to the bottom of things and solving the mystery. Banks is drawn to the case and goes back to his childhood-town. It makes Banks remember things from his adolescent youth he had long forgotten. Things that may or may not help the investigation.

The two cases are not connected as such, but there are many resemblances, specially concerning adolescence, boys, coming of age and remembering the past and all the summers that never was.

The book is long, more than 400 pages, but it moves well along and is very well written and just the kind of mystery/thriller I like. This is either 4½ or 5 stars out of 5.








This is part of the Read and Review challenge.

4 comments:

Julia Smith said...

I read a parallel narrative by Peter Ackroyd that I really enjoyed, 'Hawksmoor'. Two storylines separated by centuries take place in the same area of England, and the contemporary story involves murder investigations.

Bogsider said...

That sounds like an interesting read. Thanks for mentioning it :o)

Literary Feline said...

I've only had a chance to read one of Peter Robinson's books so far, and I really enjoyed it. I would like to go back and read the rest of the series in order. I am glad you have enjoyed what you've read by him so far!

Bogsider said...

Thanks Literary Feline - I do like his books and plan to read them all over time :-)