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Blue Lightning: A Thriller (Shetland Island Thrillers) Hardcover – September 28, 2010


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Product Details

  • Series: Shetland Island Thrillers (Book 4)
  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Minotaur Books; First Edition edition (September 28, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312384351
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312384357
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.9 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #869,631 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Veteran mystery author Cleeves transports readers to Fair Isle, a tiny island off the coast of Scotland that is a mecca for bird-watchers. Inspector Jimmy Perez, an island native, brings his fiancée, Fran, home to meet his parents. During their visit, a celebrity scientist who ran the island’s bird-research center is murdered. As Perez investigates, he uncovers a nest of complicated relationships and petty academic rivalries. The stormy weather adds to the gloom as more bodies pile up. This variant on the locked-room mystery (the third in Cleeves’ Perez series) delivers a unique atmosphere and a shocking ending that is sure to please. --Barbara Bibel

Review

 Praise for Ann Cleeves

 

"Blue Lightning is nothing short of riveting."

--Louise Penny

“Stunning… Sure to enshrine the entire series in the ranks of the unforgettable.”

--The Richmond Times-Dispatch

 

“Delivers a unique atmosphere and a shocking ending that is sure to please.”

--Booklist

 

"Chilling...enough to freeze the blood."

--The New York Times on Raven Black

 

“Riveting.”

--Val McDermid on Raven Black

 

“Cunning… Pulls the wool over our eyes in true Christie fashion.”

--Colin Dexter, author of the Inspector Morse mysteries, on White Nights


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Luan Gaines HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 28, 2010
Format: Hardcover
The setting is remote, Fair Isle a rocky stretch of land in the Shetland Islands, where avid birdwatchers and naturalists gather. Angela Moore, warden of the Fair Isle field centre, is married to the much older Maurice Parry, a spouse who heartily supports his wife's stellar accomplishments. Angela is quite a celebrity in this rarified world, with a best-selling book and frequent appearances on television as an expert in her field. Beautiful and ambitious, Angela demands perfection from those who inhabit her kingdom, indulging in small cruelties when it pleases her. The Fair Isle field centre is a serious enterprise, but filled with the sounds of celebration at the engagement party of local Jimmy Perez, a detective, and his fiancé, Fran. Taking a break from work, Jimmy introduces Fran to his parents, proud of the talented and witty artist with whom he has fallen in love.

The engagement party is a welcome diversion from petty competition among birdwatchers, but the festivities end abruptly with the discovery of a murder. As a storm rages, access to the island is cut off, Perez the only law enforcement official available. Until facts prove otherwise, the detective must consider everyone a suspect. Fair Isle is the lair of dedicated birdwatchers and naturalists: "They're all obsessive, these birdwatchers. They come across an area of research and dig away at it." Passion runs deep with this group, secrets buried under the guise of common interests, one of them driven to murder. The relative quiet of the naturalists' pursuits shattered by unexpected bursts of violence, Perez longs for a few hours of seclusion with his fiancé, ordered to lead the investigation until backup arrives.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By BC Anderson on November 12, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
There was no need to end this story this way. If I want a good cry, I will read an aga saga. These characters deserved a better ending.
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Greg Peck Fan on May 12, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is very disappointing. If you are reading the series, I recommend you stop at book 3. If you haven't started the series, you may want to skip it. It was a lazy book, with an unimaginative ending. It was a slog from about 2 or 3 chapters in (and, once I reached the end, OH! how I wished I'd stopped slogging and just given up!) The investigation in this book was sloppy and amateurish. If this is a mystery novel, and the protagonist a detective, you would not know it from some fairly glaring mistakes along the way. This is the first Amazon review I've written, but I just found it very important to say a piece on this.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Susan Johnson VINE VOICE on January 3, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As I was reading some of the reviews, I wondered if they had read the same book I had. I found this book so good that it surprised me not once, not twice but three times. I was shocked at some of the choices the author made and really hope she decides to extend the series. I found the bird watching information really helpful to the story. I had never thought of the bird watching community having stars but it just goes to show you that every world has its own. I highly recommend this book.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful By E. Suhre on May 13, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I was fast becoming an Anne Cleeves fan having read the first two thrillers of the Shetland Island Series, Raven Black and White Nights. But after having read the third book in the series, I wish I hadn't read the first fwo.

Anne Cleeves has the talent to draw the reader into close relationships with her characters, so much so, I found the ending of Blue Lightening gut wrenching. If she has anymore suprises such as the one in this book, I doubt if I will read any more of her books no matter how well they are written.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Edith Hankel on July 11, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Ann Cleeves series of mysteries set in the Shetland Islands has been compelling, full of the unique environs of these remote islands and filled with complex, interesting and believable characters. Throughout the series, we see the development of the relationship between Jimmy Perez, the detective central to the series, and artist Fran Hunter at the same time that we watch Perez working to solve crimes which are complicated enough to be interesting without becoming, as happens in a lot of contemporary mysteries,far-fetched.
However, in "Blue Lightning," it's as if Cleeves' intellectual/imaginative courage fails her and she cannot determine a way for the couple to move from fiance and fiancee into a future together. The book's conclusion, not in the solving of the murders but in what happens to Perez and Hunter, is not only hugely disappointing but completely unnecessary -- I expected better from this writer.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Richard Derus on November 17, 2010
Format: Hardcover
The Book Report: Jimmy and Fran go to visit Jimmy's parents, Big James and Mary, on Fair Isle, since they're planning to be married. Big James and Mary make a nice engagement party for the happy couple at the North Light, which now serves as the centerpiece of a birding reserve and research center. Maurice and Angela, who run the reserve, have attracted the best chef *ever* in the form of Jane, a lesbian escapee from life's more hectic and less forgiving pace in London. Throw in some birders, a weird subspecies of Homo obsessivus, a misery of a teenaged daughter, a snotty young upperclass Brit-twit, and some genuinely surprising revelations about the families and lives of the characters we who are fans have come to love, and then...drumroll please...kill off an extremely main character for absolutely avoidable reasons and throw the entire cast of characters into a major tumult, and you have book four of the Shetland Islands Quartet.

My Review: Oh, o[...] I thought Lousy Louise Penny had hurt me as badly as a novelist could with her perfidious, horrible, and completely unforgiven emotional drubbing in book 5 of Three Pines. I suppose I should have been on the alert for a similar anguishing event because Lousy Louise herself blurbed this book.
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