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The Hanging Valley (Inspector Banks Mystery) (original 1989; edition 1992)

by Peter Robinson

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5561417,948 (3.72)19
Member:Marshrat
Title:The Hanging Valley (Inspector Banks Mystery)
Authors:Peter Robinson
Info:Scribner (1992), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 288 pages
Collections:Library Book
Rating:***1/2
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The Hanging Valley by Peter Robinson (1989)

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Showing 1-5 of 14 (next | show all)
A good, honest crime story: nothing fancy, no cheating, just a straight forward crime yarn. That is all I ask from this type of work and, whenever I see the name Peter Robinson, I know that's what I am going to get. Once more, I was not disappointed. The book held me from page one to the final sentence and, I didn't guess the ending, although I had had suspicions planted by the author.

I am, slowly working my way through the DCI Banks novels and this one simply made me more keen to find the next! ( )
  the.ken.petersen | Jun 25, 2014 |
A decomposing corpse is found in a hidden valley and the search for the killer brings Inspector Banks all over England and to Toronto in Canada. I did enjoy the characters and the descriptions of Yorkshire, as I do in most of the books in this series, but the part that takes place in Canada seems a bit tacked on - as if the writer had gone there on vacation and wanted a reason to put that in a book. The mystery is solid and Banks is such a good regular-guy detective that you can't help but to root for him. Overall, it's a good installment in a good series. ( )
  -Eva- | Nov 3, 2013 |
A walker finds a corpse in a valley in Yorkshire Dales, and Chief Inspector Banks is called to investigate. It's not the first time there's been an unexplained death in the same small village, and it begins to feel too much like a coincidence. In the course of the story, Banks visits Toronto in search of further clues. An easy and undemanding read, I finished this the same day I started. ( )
  mari_reads | Oct 26, 2013 |
2.5 stars, perhaps. Good audiobook. An alternative title might be "Banks goes to Toronto." I always wonder when a local character takes off for other pastures as part of an investigation. Did the author just visit there and want to add some local color? Is Robinson a Jays fan?

Ostensibly, Banks has to travel to Toronto to find and interview a woman who may have information about an unsolved murder in Swainsdale that had occurred years before but may be linked to a more recent one.

The body of Bernard Allen, a man who had briefly relocated to Canada, is discovered buried in the woods in a remote area of Yorkshire. The investigation takes Banks to Toronto to search for a woman who might have known him. (And we get treated -- if that's the word -- to a Blue Jays game.)

Banks has to dig back into the past to determine the reason for the killing. I had difficulty getting a feel for the motivations of the characters and this is not one of Robinson's better efforts. His writing is good, but the characters in this volume lacked full development.

Some reviewers have complained about the ending, that somehow it was a shock. Perhaps, but only in its abruptness. This may be one of those cases where a good reader (James Langton) makes a bad book better. I had difficulty connecting with this story, but the excellent narration prevented switching to the off button. ( )
  ecw0647 | Sep 30, 2013 |
The fourth book in the Alan Banks series by Peter Robinson, “The Hanging Valley”, was a disappointment for me. After enjoying the first three books in the series, I found this installment to be below the standards I have come to expect from Robinson.

The eponymous hanging valley is a beautiful place, favoured by hikers in Yorkshire. The beauty of the place is ruined when one of these hikers finds a decomposing body in the valley. Inspector Banks identifies the victim as Bernard Allen, an Englishman who moved to Canada and was in England for a home visit. To solve the crime Banks digs into the past, trying to unearth the motives that could bring about the death of a seemingly innocent man with no enemies. He feels there is a connection with an unsolved murder five years back.

Prime suspects are the Collier brothers, heirs to a local wealthy family who seem to be too chummy with a local B&B owner, Sam Greenock, a man well below their standing in society. Sam’s troubled wife, Katie, is one of the main characters in the book and unwittingly throws Banks off the scent with her problems. Convinced he needs a broader perspective in order to get to the bottom of things, he convinces his boss to spend some money and send him to Canada to dig around. In Toronto he meets with Allen’s ex-pat buddies and discovers the reason why Allen was killed. He rushes back to England to catch the killer.

If this is the first book you pick up in the Alan Banks series, don’t let it put you off Peter Robinson. Read my other review of his books and leave “The Hanging Valley” for a rainy day. ( )
  ashergabbay | Nov 5, 2012 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 038082048X, Mass Market Paperback)

No one dreamed something so hideous could grow in so beautiful a place . . .

Many who visit the valley are overwhelmed by its majesty. Some wish they never had to leave. One didn't, a hiker whose decomposing corpse is discovered by an unsuspecting tourist. But this strange, incomprehensible murder is only the edge of the darkness that hovers over a small rural village and its tight-lipped residents who guard shattering secrets of sordid pasts and private shames. Detective Chief Inspector Alan Banks knows that both the grim truth and a cold-blooded killer are hiding here, far from the city, the noise, and safety. And he's determined to walk into the valley of death to expose them both.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:42:50 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

A hiker's decomposing corpse is discovered by an unsuspecting tourist. But this strange, incomprehensible murder is only the edge of the darkness that hovers over a small rural village and its tight-lipped residents.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 4 descriptions

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