Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “All the Colours of Darkness (Inspector Banks, #18)” as Want to Read:
All the Colours of Darkness (Inspector Banks, #18)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

All the Colours of Darkness (Inspector Banks #18)

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  4,053 Ratings  ·  268 Reviews
A beautiful June day in the Yorkshire Dales, and a group of children are spending the last of their half-term freedom swimming in the river near Hipswell Woods. But the idyll is shattered by their discovery of a man's body, hanging from a tree.
Published by Hodder & Stoughton (first published January 1st 2008)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
James Thane
Mar 23, 2010 James Thane rated it liked it
DCI Alan Banks is on holiday in London, frolicking (or hoping to) with the new love of his life, when his colleague, DI Annie Cabbot is called to the scene of an apparent suicide. Mark Hardcastle, set designer for a local theater group, is found hanging from a tree in the woods outside Eastvale. Things get more complicated when Hardcastle's lover, Laurence Silbert, is found savagely beaten to death in the luxurious home that the two shared.

Banks is called back from his holiday to help deal with
...more
Rose
Eh, I read most of this while I was stuck in the hospital for hours before they could take me home. I don't recommend it, even though I have enjoyed some of the previous Inspector Banks stories (I think).

The plot isn't exactly brilliant, but the biggest problem is the dire writing style. It's wooden and it distracts you from what plot and characterisation the book does have. The book is 500 pages long and could easily, very easily, be a lot shorter and a lot better. I will say now that I could h
...more
Tina
What can I say about this one? Obviously I love Alan Banks but this book was not up to par with the others in the series. If it’s a police procedural I am usually absorbed with the action, the crime scene crew and resulting investigation. But this time Robinson brought a spy element into the story; MI-5 gets involved on the fringes of the investigation as one of their agents was murdered.

The story starts with boys playing in the woods where they find a body hanging from one of the trees. Here is
...more
Kathleen
Mar 29, 2009 Kathleen rated it did not like it
I haven't been this disappointed in a book in a long while. I have always enjoyed Robinson's Inspector Banks series but this one made me wonder why I ever liked or sympathized w/ the hero. I got tired of hearing what music he was listening to and even more weary of the spy thriller plot Finished as fast as possible just so I could list it on Amazon used.
E
Jul 17, 2010 E rated it liked it
Such a relief to read a mystery that does not involve a serial killer. Perhaps because the author is British? Seems like so many U.S. detective fiction writers (well, at least the non-cozy ones) these days are mired in either serial killers (every damn book, for pete's sake) or in ghastly, gruesome, detailed depictions of massacred and brutalized victims (not mutually exclusive, of course). Are American readers really this blood-thirsty? Is it impossible to sell a murder mystery without this obs ...more
Ian Mapp
Feb 18, 2009 Ian Mapp rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime
I really enjoyed this one - and looking at amamzon.co.uk reviews, it would appear as though i was the only one!

In a switch from the henning mankell novel recenyly read, we have a mystery here which is not resolved until the end. We follow banks as he progresses through the investigation.

And the crime.... a nice clever play on Othello, as a local gay couple are found - one dead, one suicide. He theories of the investigation are that this has been caused by a third party spreading rumours and inne
...more
Glenda
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jim
May 06, 2009 Jim rated it really liked it
I think Robinson is up there with Rankin/Connelly
what do others think?

a really good read and interesting in being so close to real life and how things sometimes work
Damaskcat
Jan 06, 2015 Damaskcat rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Children find a man's body hanging from a tree in a local beauty spot. It seems like a simple and tragic case of suicide but it turns out to be far from simple when the man's lover is also found dead, apparently murdered at home. At first it seems like a murder followed by suicide perhaps sparked by sexual jealousy but neither Banks nor DI Annie Cabbot are convinced that this is the whole story and some information from the murdered man's mother leads Banks to think there could be more wide rang ...more
Carol
Dec 14, 2016 Carol rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
All The Colors of Darknessby Peter Robinson
Alan Banks series Book #18
4 ★'s

From The Book:
In a world of terror and uncertainty, what does one small death matter?

The body hanging from a tree in a peaceful wood appears to Detective Inspector Annie Cabbot to be a suicide. Further investigation into the sad demise of Mark Hardcastle, the set designer for the local amateur theater company, leads to the corpse of Mark's older, wealthier lover, brutally bludgeoned to death.

Suddenly the case demands the a
...more
Valerie Penny
Jan 07, 2015 Valerie Penny rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of my daughters gave me All the Colours of Darkness by Peter Robinson. I was delighted. I first met Peter when I attended an Arvon writing course in Inverness, Scotland and he was one of the tutors. What an incisive mind he has! Peter hales from Armly, Leeds, Yorkshire, England where he was born on 17, March 1950. He gained an honours degree in English Literature from Leeds University. He then emigrated to Canada in 1974 and took his MA in English and Creative Writing at the University of Wi ...more
Nikki
May 16, 2009 Nikki rated it really liked it
WARNING: POSSIBLE SPOILER AHEAD.
Peter Robinson's latest entry in the Alan Banks police procedural series is a rather dark one. Banks's investigation of what at first seems a simple murder-suicide involves him with Britain's security services, of whose actions Robinson doesn't have a very high opinion. He mentions a couple of books that Banks reads for background and it's safe to assume Robinson has read them too. All is grist to Banks's mill, even going to a Shakespeare production helps him rea
...more
Thomas Strömquist
Did not care for number 18 in the Banks series. The apparent murder/suicide of a gay couple looks kind of straightforward, but Banks has a "Othello"-based suspicion; that someone prompted the jealousy that brought the horrible chain of events on. He manages to bring Annie Cabott along on a futile private investigation. This treads water for a large part of the book and the only distraction lies in that the murder victim was a retired(?) employee of MI6, and the shady people of secret services ta ...more
Bookmarks Magazine

Peter Robinson rarely strikes a false note in his fiction, and All the Colors of Darkness, which draws on elements of espionage and Cold War treachery, is another solid installment in the Inspector Alan Banks series. Banks has become one of the most recognizable figures in a growing stable of gritty British crime solvers (Ian Rankin's Inspector Rebus comes to mind). Critics are divided as to whether Robinson's latest effort is his best, but they are unanimous in praising the author's continued s

...more
Marsha
A rather disappointing book. In his investigation into a murder/suicide of a high profile gay couple, Inspector Banks philosophizes about music, literature, the performing arts and intimate relationships in general. Theorizing that the crime may be driven by jealousies explored in Shakespeare's "Othello", he uncovers a list of suspects and government officials who would prefer he just go away. Tenacious as always, Banks cannot let it go. Additionally he is in the beginning stages of a possible r ...more
Judy
May 30, 2009 Judy rated it really liked it
Peter Robinson is one of my favorite authors and this book--number 18 in the Alan Banks series--did not disappoint. At times I was unsure if it was a traditional English mystery or a spy thriller. The plot didn't reflect well on M15 and M16 and the ending held out the promise that there would be repercussions in future volumes. I look forward to them.
Maggie
Aug 01, 2016 Maggie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I always enjoy a DCI Banks and this time we see Alan involved in the world of MI5 and Spooks. I enjoyed the plot and the story although I found some of the ideas a little far fetched.
Mish Middelmann
Mar 15, 2015 Mish Middelmann rated it liked it
Reassuring to have Inspector Banks resolving such big problems for me while I'm in bed sick, reading light detective novels.
Clare O'Beara
Dec 10, 2016 Clare O'Beara rated it liked it
Shelves: british-crime
This is a somewhat confused crime tale as Banks investigates a hanging which seems to be part of a murder-suicide case. The murder aspect looks at a gay man found dead in his home. Some years ago he had travelled for the Foreign Office; no stretch of the imagination to see that his continued absences abroad meant he is still working as a spy. So I don't know why it took Banks so long to see it. The photos produced among evidence were obviously the sort taken by a private investigator; again, Ban ...more
Oneandtwenty
Feb 09, 2017 Oneandtwenty rated it really liked it
Disobeying orders, a Yorkshire detective and colleagues pursue an officially closed "suicide following murder" case, triggering government surveillance and interference. Expansive.
Kirstie
Feb 26, 2017 Kirstie rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kim Kimselius
Dec 09, 2016 Kim Kimselius rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lika bra som alltid!
Mary Overgaard
Jan 16, 2017 Mary Overgaard rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A real thriller.

This is modern detective fiction at it's finest. Great plotting. Dark images and wonderful characters. All of Robinson's books have been great reads but this is exceptional.

Hope some of the minor character like our lady private eye return.
Wendy Greene
Excellent. One of my favourites by Peter Robinson!
Paula Dembeck
May 28, 2015 Paula Dembeck rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the eighteenth addition to the Inspector Banks Series.

In the Hindswell Woods just south of Eastvale Castle, four young schoolboys come upon the body of a man hanging from a large oak tree. The man appears to be about forty or forty-five and is covered in blood. But when the police arrive, they find little physical trauma to the body, just a few scratches the victim probably received when he climbed the tree. The origin of all that blood is a mystery.
The scene looks very much like a suici
...more
Carol
Dec 14, 2016 Carol rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
All The Colors of Darknessby Peter Robinson
Alan Banks series Book #18
4 ★'s

From The Book:
In a world of terror and uncertainty, what does one small death matter?

The body hanging from a tree in a peaceful wood appears to Detective Inspector Annie Cabbot to be a suicide. Further investigation into the sad demise of Mark Hardcastle, the set designer for the local amateur theater company, leads to the corpse of Mark's older, wealthier lover, brutally bludgeoned to death.

Suddenly the case demands the a
...more
Gary
Dec 16, 2016 Gary rated it liked it
3.5 stars

Was mostly good but a shitty ending I thought. Pretty uninventive and it felt rushed.

Thought it was a strong 4 star book until the last 3rd of the book where it went a bit downhill.

Will definitely read more in the series as characters well described and storyline generally interesting.
Cornelis Broekhof
Oct 23, 2011 Cornelis Broekhof rated it really liked it
This is the first book I have read of the Inspector Banks series. I didn’t like it as much as Caedmon’s Song (also by Robinson, but without Banks), but it is an enjoyable book, with a great deal of suspense and a very ingenious plot. Crime authors often like to show off their erudition, quoting Shakespeare, Milton, T.S. Eliot and the like every other page, but in this case the play Othello is actually a functional part of the plot.

One of the most attractive things about a book like this is its
...more
Michael
Apr 10, 2009 Michael rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: mystery fans, British mystery fans
The story opens with a number of school children finding Mark Hardcastle's body. He had been hung. When police attempt to notify his lover, Laurence Silbert, they find him beaten to death with a baseball bat, with Hardcastle's prints on the bat.

Simple lover's quarrel? Murder - suicide?

As usual with Robinson, nothing is quite what it seems. This work follows his excellent "Friend of the Devil" and continues in the series with Chief Inspector Alan Banks and DI Annie Cabbot.

It turns out that Sil
...more
Diane
Feb 07, 2010 Diane rated it really liked it
Poor Alan Banks. Peter Robinson, the author of this detective series set in Yorkshire, leads Banks into more and more untenable positions in All the Colours of Darkness, a line from Shakespeare's Othello. This time, in a plot underscored by the action in Othello, Banks ignores warnings to stay away from looks to be a simple murder-suicide growing out of a lover's quarrel. And as is always the case, his striking out on his own gets him into more trouble than he ever bargained for.

Robinson always
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Dancing with the Virgins (Ben Cooper & Diane Fry, #2)
  • Cold in Hand (Charles Resnick, #11)
  • On Beulah Height (Dalziel & Pascoe, #17)
  • A Killing Frost (Inspector Frost, #6)
  • The Take (DI Joe Faraday, #2)
  • Skeleton Hill (Peter Diamond, #10)
  • In the Dark
  • Exit Music (Inspector Rebus, #17)
  • Sein letzter Fall (Inspector Van Veeteren #10)
  • Where Memories Lie (Duncan Kincaid & Gemma James, #12)
  • The Pure in Heart (Simon Serrailler, #2)
5922
Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

Peter Robinson was born in Yorkshire. After getting his BA Honours Degree in English Literature at the University of Leeds, he came to Canada and took his MA in English and Creative Writing at the University of Windsor, with Joyce Carol Oates as his tutor, then a PhD in En
...more
More about Peter Robinson...

Other Books in the Series

Inspector Banks (1 - 10 of 24 books)
  • Gallows View (Inspector Banks, #1)
  • A Dedicated Man  (Inspector Banks, #2)
  • A Necessary End (Inspector Banks, #3)
  • The Hanging Valley (Inspector Banks, #4)
  • Past Reason Hated (Inspector Banks, #5)
  • Wednesday's Child (Inspector Banks, #6)
  • Dry Bones that Dream (Inspector Banks, #7)
  • Innocent Graves (Inspector Banks, #8)
  • Blood at the Root (Inspector Banks, #9)
  • In a Dry Season (Inspector Banks, #10)

Share This Book



“Banks felt more alone and further away for having just talked to Sophia than he had before her call. But it was always like that - the telephone might bring you together for a few moments, but there's nothing like it for emphasising distance.” 6 likes
More quotes…