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Wild Fire by Ann Cleeves

Wild Fire

by Ann Cleeves

Series: Shetland (8)

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This Detective Inspector Jimmy Perez murder mystery begins with the suspicious death of a twenty-something family nanny. Her body has been staged to make it seem as if she hanged herself, but it soon is apparent that she was strangled. The hanging is particularly sinister because a man hanged himself at the same place a few months before this one was found.

The ensuing investigation reunites Perez with his commanding officer, Willow Reeves. It's a tense reunion because of a personal and intimate relationship they developed in the previous novel. The pair struggle with their feelings in this story, and only resolve them at the end of this book.

The investigation also takes Perez and his colleagues into the lives of the victim, Emma Shearer, and several other residents of Shetland Island. The Island and its rural way of life serves as an atmospheric background for the story, and are as much a character in the story as any of the humans.

It's a complex and intriguing mystery story. It's also the last of a multi-book series and the only one that I have read to date. I had no difficulty reading it as a standalone. ( )
  BrianEWilliams | Dec 11, 2018 |
This was a fascinating police procedural set on Shetland Island in Scotland. For me, a good detective mystery has a crime and lots of potential suspects. If there are multiple suspects with dark twisted motives, then even better. A smart detective with personality quirks (think Hercule Poirot or Sherlock Holmes) always adds to the fun. This mystery met all the criteria with a beautiful setting. Definitely never came close to guessing the outcome of this one. ( )
  jmoncton | Nov 13, 2018 |
I haven't read one of these novels for years, but I have been watching "Shetland" - it's all very different. This was an enjoyable read, but Perez wasn't the same man as on TV and I missed Tosh.

The story was easy enough to follow, but all the characters were unlikeable (I'm thinking especially of you, Perez!) and the solution underwhelming, especially as the writer tried to drag out the suspense for a couple of chapters by referring to "the murderer" and "the person with the knife" repeatedly in a verbally odd way. The portrayal of Christopher's autism seemed to me authentic, although I am no expert. ( )
  pgchuis | Nov 8, 2018 |
I'm very disappointed that Wild Fire is the last book in the Shetland series. I have enjoyed each and every book of this series. I have found that all of Ann Cleeves' police procedurals hook you from the beginning and don't let you go until the very surprising ending. Her characters are all well-drawn and the plots are always unique. The murderer in her books are always hard to solve. She keeps the clues close to her chest. Jimmy Perez is my favorite character but I was not happy with how he treated Willow in this book. If you haven't read this series yet, you need to start with book 1, Raven Black. Highly recommended for those who love mystery thrillers. ( )
  EadieB | Oct 12, 2018 |
In "Wild Fire," by Ann Cleeves, Chief Inspector Willow Reeves (who is based in Inverness on the Scottish mainland) and Detective Inspector Jimmy Perez team up to solve two murders in the Shetland Islands community of Deltaness. Perez and Reeves, who is the Senior Investigating Officer, have a strained relationship, but are determined to keep their personal issues from interfering with their work. First, the body of a young woman is found hanging in a barn belonging to Helena and Daniel Fleming. The Flemings are understandably distraught, since the previous owner of the their home, Dennis Gear, hanged himself in the same spot. Later, a second resident is killed, and Jimmy, Willow, and DC Sandy Wilson intensify their efforts to obtain information from witnesses, examine the forensic evidence, and learn who had the motive, means, and opportunity to commit these crimes.

Perez is heartbroken and guilt-ridden over the death of his fianc̩e, Fran Hunter, three years earlier. Now, his priority is raising Fran's nine-year-old daughter, Cassie, whose biological father has little time for her. Jimmy has feelings for Willow Reeves, but he is emotionally unprepared to make a commitment. With her lyrical descriptive writing and occasional use of Scottish dialect, Cleeves captures the atmosphere of her scenic and exotic setting. In Deltaness, everyone knows everyone elseÛªs business, rumors spread quickly, and newcomers are sometimes treated with suspicion, if not outright disdain.

The characters are well drawn. We meet Emma Shearer, a twenty-four year old nanny with a troubled past; Margaret Riddell, a bitter and lonely gossipmonger; and Robert and Belle Moncrieff, indifferent parents who hired Emma to shoulder the burden of caring for their four children. Helena and Daniel were once a devoted couple, but they are gradually drifting apart. The author explores such themes as the poison that envy generates; the terrible consequences of physical and verbal abuse; and the risks we take when we open our hearts to others. "Wild Fire," the last entry in the Shetland series, is a grim but engrossing police procedural that is enriched by its picturesque locale, expertly crafted dialogue, and its insight into the strengths and weaknesses that make us human.
( )
  booklover915 | Oct 9, 2018 |
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Hoping for a fresh start, an English family moves to the remote Shetland islands, eager to give their autistic son a better life.

But when a young nanny's body is found hanging in the barn beside their home, rumors of her affair with the husband spread like wildfire. As suspicion and resentment of the family blazes in the community, Detective Inspector Jimmy Perez is called in to investigate. He knows it will mean his boss, Willow Reeves, returning to run the investigation, and confronting their complex relationship.

With families fracturing and long-hidden lies emerging, Jimmy faces the most disturbing case of his career Amazon
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