“She’s up there with Ian Rankin among practitioners of character-driven Scottish noir.” (The Philadelphia Inquirer)
“Riveting. . . . An installment that exposes the bleakness of small-town Scotland as skillfully as it does the bustling mean streets of Glasgow.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))
“A wee fine read.” (Winnipeg Free Press)
“A page turner that is guaranteed to satisfy mystery lovers.” (The Vancouver Sun)
“There’s a wonderful Glasgow-ness to Mina’s writing. Using various points of view, she captures a city full of hopelessness and hope, a place of deep class divides and gang crime, of loyalty and pride in belonging.” (NOW Magazine)
“Deliciously shadowy.” (Metro London)
“Atmospheric and compelling.” (Woman & Home (UK))
“Takes you right under the characters’ skin. A relentlessly tense and exciting read, every page oozes menace and its core of truth makes it all the more unsettling.” (Sunday Mirror)
“A terrific exploration of crime and oppression.” (Kirkus Reviews (starred review))
“Mina applies her imagination to the known facts and creates a vivid, haunting narrative.” (The Times (London))
“Indelible.” (The Guardian)
“A thrilling read. . . . Much though I love Mina’s Alex Morrow and Paddy Meehan books, it is in this book-where she is least making things up-that she shows her true creative powers.” (The Scotsman)
“An extraordinary achievement, so weird and vivid and compelling, like The Lost Weekend crossed with one of the darker Elmore Leonards. Very black and existentialist. The writing is fantastic, sharp and intelligent and it rang absolutely true.” (Christobel Kent, author of The Crooked House and My Husband's Wife)
“The emerging story is an intricate and suspenseful unveiling of a murderer’s mind while taking readers on a compelling journey through Glasgow’s historic underworld. . . . This stand-alone thriller showcases Mina at her best.” (Booklist (starred review))
“A fascinating retelling by Denise Mina, Scotland’s most literate and imaginative crime novelist. . . . Ghastly and irresistable.” (Toronto Star)
“The Long Drop is a foray into the world of true crime, as fictionalized by a writer of real talent.” (Globe and Mail (Toronto))
From the Back Cover
A stand-alone true crime thriller from the acclaimed author of the Alex Morrow novels that exposes the dark hearts of the guilty . . . and the innocent.
True story: 1958, Glasgow. Peter Manuel broke into a suburban villa in Glasgow and murdered three members of the Watt family. William Watt, the father, a successful businessman and entrepreneur, was arrested and jailed for the crime, but the police couldn’t find enough evidence to charge him and he was released. Watt was determined to clear his own name and let it be known that he would pay for information. Peter Manuel contacted him and offered to help. The two men met in a bar and spent the next twelve hours drinking together.
No one knows what happened that night.
When Manuel was finally arrested weeks later on another murder charge, he represented himself in what the newspapers called the trial of the century.
The Long Drop is Denise Mina’s reimagining of the mysterious night Peter Manuel and William Watt spent together, intercut with the transcripted trial. Through a careful reconstruction of events, Mina’s riveting prose attempts to make sense of one of the most baffling and intriguing true crime cases in legal history.