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The Dead Ground by Claire McGowan
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The Dead Ground

by Claire McGowan

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This 2nd book in the series is a very gripping read about stolen babies. Paula's personal life has become very interesting and complex just like the mystery involving the babies. The book is a real page-turner and hard to put down. The author makes you feel like you are in Northern Ireland experiencing everything that is happening there. Can't wait to read the 3rd book in order to find out more about these intriguing characters. ( )
  EadieB | Jan 2, 2018 |
a really Good opening! but then just like a Big Dipper ride after you get over the first big WOW! all the rest never seems to live up to the first big blast and yes this 'story' was just like that - Bang! in with shock and wonder then mumble, mumble, mumble - Oh a bit of interest - more mumbling and then the introducing of 'Herrings' some are red but mostly they're Orange or Green; well it is set in Ireland (both north & south) so as always, orange and green sides appear or are alluded to. The story tries to keep you guessing but I guessed pretty early on and so it never really held me in tight like good stories usually do. Shame really. ( )
  nikon | Aug 19, 2015 |
The second book from Irish crime fiction writer, Claire McGowan, The Dead Ground is part police procedural/part thriller as forensic psychologist Paula Maguire, and the Missing Persons Unit, searches for an abducted infant, a missing pro-choice doctor and a newborn, ripped from her mother’s womb.

The grisly opening scene, set during the height of ‘The Troubles’ sets the tone for the shocking crimes that follow in The Dead Ground. This isn’t a story for the faint of heart as the MPRU and Serious Crime team struggle to trace a child abductor and a killer who may be the one and the same.

Paula’s personal issues are entwined in the cases her unit are investigating. I could sympathise with Paula’s prevarication with regards to her personal life but I was irritated by her lack of assertiveness and clear thinking in her professional role. Distracted by her own problems, Paula makes poor choices, including withholding evidence, ultimately putting herself in the path of a killer. I wanted to like her more than I did, and perhaps if I had read the first book to feature Macquire, The Lost, I may have been more forgiving of her flaws in this one.

McGowan courts controversy with her exploration of the abortion debate. Vehement religious opposition means termination is still illegal in Ireland and the few, like Dr Alison Bates, who are willing to offer women options are subject to public vitriol. The irony of the doctor being brutally murdered, and the lack of sympathy for the woman from right to lifers, is inescapable.

Fast paced, provocative and intriguing, The Dead Ground is a story of murder, madness, and the missing. ( )
1 vote shelleyraec | Apr 12, 2014 |
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A month before Christmas, and Ballyterrin on the Irish border lies under a thick pall of snow. When a newborn baby goes missing from hospital, it's all too close to home for forensic psychologist Paula Maguire, who's wrestling with the hardest decision of her life.… (more)

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