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Into the Blue (Harry Barnett #1)

3.89 of 5 stars 3.89  ·  rating details  ·  1,172 ratings  ·  93 reviews
Harry Barnett lives the life of an Englishman on permanent vacation in Greece, house-sitting for a powerful friend and hiding from a past disgrace. That is, until a guest at the villa disappears on a walking tour, and Harry is the number one suspect. While a Greek detective tries to trap him, and the British tabloids pillory him at home, Harry’s conscience is his worst ene ...more
ebook, 544 pages
Published January 31st 2006 by Delta (first published January 1st 1990)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,748)
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This lengthy mystery/thriller takes a long time to get going (about 150 pages in the mass-market paperback), but once it does, it's almost as riveting as Goddard's other books. This was his fourth novel and the first to be set in the present day (the others were historical mysteries/thrillers). Like all of Goddard's fiction, the mystery unravels over the entire course of the book, so you're always waiting for the next revelation . . . which will probably complicate or contradict what you've alre ...more
This was the first novel by Robert Goddard I read. After that, I was completely hooked. I rate Goddard as the best suspense novelist I've ever read. His plot twists are incredible; as a long-time reader, I'm used to being able to predict endings. It's depressing, really, how few can surprise me. Well, Goddard can! And his are true plot twists, all the information is planted early in the novel, but you can never quite see which little nugget of information will end up being the crucial one! Delig ...more
I have such mixed feelings about Into the Blue. Looking back on it, it had a few surprises that caught me off guard. At the same time, I felt very removed from the characters, and I also guessed the main "bad guy" about a 6th of the way through. It was also a very slow read for me (possibly because of the lack of feeling for the characters). I felt the ending was predictable, though poetic.

I think there was also a lack of drive for me. What was propelling the main character onward? Fear for him
Bryan Higgs
Well, he did it again! Robert Goddard, that is.

I am working my way through his books in chronological order, and this is the fourth one I've read so far. In every book, he sucks me into the plot in short order, and I have to finish the book. Goddard is a master of the plot twist (each book seems to have a surprise at the end which I, at least, didn't predict). In this book (and perhaps in all of those I've read so far), the identity of the 'bad guy' (the who) is less important than the why, and
Into the Blue by Robert Goddard
Book Description:
Harry Barnett lives the life of an Englishman on permanent vacation in Greece, house-sitting for a powerful friend and hiding from a past disgrace. That is, until a guest at the villa disappears on a walking tour, and Harry is the number one suspect. While a Greek detective tries to trap him, and the British tabloids pillory him at home, Harry’s conscience is his worst enemy of all. What happened to young, beautiful Heather Mallender? Who took her—
Goddard does it again! In this novel we meet Harry Barnett, a fiftish failure with a past. Harry's life is immersed in failure; its only positive aspect being Harrys unlikely friendship with Alan Dysart, an Undersecretary of State at the Ministry of Defense. While house sitting at Alan's villa in Greece, Harry is drawn into a perplexing and bizarre puzzle involving the disappearance of a beautiful, young houseguest.

These are only two of the several plot threads that textures this story and weav
Typical Goddard book in that it had great characters, a very deliberate and well constructed plot, and interesting settings. I really enjoyed this book just as I have his others.
R. Harries
One of my favourite authors whose writing style and complex plotting sets him way above most of his contemporaries. This is the first in a series of three books about a middle-aged failed businessman called Harry Barnett who never has much luck or money but somehow gets sucked into great adventures with enough magic beans for travel and pubs, while younger better looking women constantly fall for his charms. If you can handle that then you’re in for a brilliant ride solving intriguing mysteries ...more
Thibaut Creton
Quel gâchis! L'intrigue est passionnante, et aurait pu donner lieu à une excellente enquête. Las, les défauts s'accumulent tout au long du roman, jusqu'à un final complètement grotesque.

"Heather Mallender a disparu" est une enquête menée par un homme qui n'arrive pas à se contenter de l'absence d'explication à la disparition d'Heather, qu'il avait brièvement connue et avec qui il avait sympathisé. Mais dès le début on le soupçonne, la police ne le croit pas ; bref, on est déjà dans la caricature
A man with severe and justified self worth issues strikes up a frienship with a young woman who stays in the villa he is looking after. When she suddenly disapears, he sets out to find out why, despite being suspect number one in her disapearance. The book sets off slow before reaching a most satisfying climax albeit with some sacrifice to realism. Very enjoyable, fun and smart thriller choice.
My Inner Shelf
Heather Mallender décide de remettre de la dépression dans la maison grecque d’un ami politicien, et se lie d’amitié avec Harry Bennet, un ami commun, plus ou moins gardien de la maison. Lorsque ces deux-là partent en balade en montagne, Heather se volatilise sans laisser la moindre trace. Harry, quinquagénaire à la vie un peu raté, décide de retrouver Heather, quoiqu’il arrive. Commence alors une enquête aux allures de jeu de piste, l’intrigue devient très alambiquée, voire tordue et parfois un ...more
Long, tiresome and unending. I wanted to shake Harry and tell him to make up his mind. The problem was he was totally manipulate from the beginning and we could see it but he couldn't. What a waste of time.
Brenda Hawley
Robert Goddard writes the most complex plots around. These books keep you thinking until the very end with all the twists and turns. Some nice prose too... I recommend him highly.
After careful consideration, I think this gets four stars. This book was recommended to me as Goddard's best book by two people who consider Goddard their favorite author (my mother and father, namely). What I was told of his writing was that he creates very intricately plotted mysteries in which the twists, surprises, and conclusions are impossible to predict, but always make sense to the reader after they are revealed because of subtle clues and foreshadowing; and that his style of writing is ...more
Okayish. This book had a really great opening – a man is standing alone on a footpath near some cliffs in Rhodes waiting for a woman to return from her hike. He waits and waits and waits. It gets dark. She doesn’t return. He reports her disappearance to the police and gets put in jail because everyone is convinced he has murdered her. Her body is never found, he is convinced she is still alive, so once he is released from jail, he sets off to find her, following a series of photographs she took ...more
Robert Goddard nous emmène sur l’île de Rhodes en 1988. Heather Mallender, jeune britannique de bonne famille, séjourne sur l’île afin de se remettre d’une dépression liée au décès de sa sœur dans un attentat revendiqué par l’IRA. Invitée par le parlementaire et ministre britannique, Alan Dysart, à séjourner dans sa villa, Heather fait la connaissance du gardien de la demeure, Harry Barnett, quinquagénaire désabusé et ayant un penchant prononcé pour l’alcool. Il sera le dernier à voir Heather le ...more
KEL Stephen
(Audio Book) First of all I enjoyed Into The Blue, Goddard writes very well and effectively and engagingly recounts any situation - even when nothing much is happening.
However, here and there I find Goddard's choice of vocabluary verbose and over-worked, which on occasion interefered with my involvement and submersion in the narrative - especially so, seeing as the first person narrator Harry Barnett is a chap from a standard background and education, where I come from indeed - so I found some
Oct 11, 2007 Cecilia rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: thriller readers/mystery fans
Shelves: favorites
A great suspense tale filled with everything…adventure, love, surprises, action, great characters, tension, etc. This one has it all…it is one of the better suspense stories I’d read in a while…and I read quite a few. Starting off with the disappearance of a young woman in Greece, Goddard sets the stage for the type of book he’s writing. He gives us a main character (the man who is with the girl when she disappears) who is not always likable or honest. Do we believe he is innocent or not? When s ...more
A cleverly plotted beach-read thriller, with a cast of colourful but recognisable characters, from the down-at-heel anti-hero who inexplicably attracts not one but two femme-fatales (femmes-fatale?) to the Svengali-like psychiatrist. As expected, nothing is as it seems.

The writing is well-crafted, and the opening has a chill effectiveness. There is a clever, dry turn of phrase which attracts, but descriptions can be over-written and trite on occasion, especially as the book speeds towards its

Joe Stamber
My favourite Robert Goddard so far. Harry's a bit of a loser, but his unlikely friendship with a prominent politician leads to him caretaking a villa on Rhodes. Here he meets Heather, a troubled young woman who disappears while she and Harry are out walking one day. Harry is suspected of her murder, and sets out to find Heather; a quest which reveals many a skeleton in many a closet.

It's a typical tale of intrigue with plenty of digging up the past, as Goddard is so fond of, and so skilled at, d
Be forewarned that this is a very L-O-N-G book!

I was hooked by the audio narration early on, as well as Harry's likeable-schmuck-in-a-fix persona. Rhodes setting proved a strong start, with Inspector Melteades being a character I'd hoped to see more of (spoiler: we don't). I won't say the story gets "bogged down" in the middle, rather that so much happens that I had trouble keeping straight who was who; so, I paused partway through, coming back to the book after several days away. I'd say that h
Actually, I listened to the audio version of this book. It was very well read (Paul Shelley) and quite enjoyable. Surprisingly, it really held my interest. I suggest surprisingly, because the protagonist, Harry, is a kind of bumbler and ne'er-do-well who gets caught up in the disappearance of a young woman. They were climbing a small mountain on the Greek island of Rhodes. He gives out before reaching the top, she continues, and disappears. Harry is left a suspect and with nothing more than some ...more
This is my third Goddard novel, and probably my least favorite thus far. It's still a great read, don't get me wrong - it's just not up to the same level as the others I've read. The intro to the story is great. It's creepy, just the thought of going to an abandoned mountaintop, and your friend disappearing. Goddard captures that eeriness really well. And I like the idea of a schmuck of a guy being the main character, but I found myself the last quarter of the book wanting things to move along. ...more
Odd - I didn't want to continue reading because it was so boring, but I did anyway because I wanted to find out who did it. I guess I'm trying to say it was a good story that just took too bloody long.
Jul 01, 2014 Iliotropio is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
I registered a book at!
Takes a while to get going but gripping nonetheless. A good introduction to Harry Barnett, an unlikely hero from Swindon
This was my second time reading Into the Blue, but it was like a first read because I had forgotten most of the details and certainly the resolution. I have read most of Goddard's books and appreciate them for being well-written, intricately plotted, and having non-heroic protagonists, who rise to the occasion when they must. Whereas in my first reading I was focused on the plot and the resolution of the mystery, this time I was more keenly attuned to the themes: betrayal, redemption, the unexpe ...more
Harry Barnett is a disgraced Englishman living in self imposed exile. He is house-sitting on the isle of Rhodes when suddenly his undemanding lifestyle is turned upside down. A young woman disappears and Harry is the prime suspect. The police and journalists dredge up a past that he would rather forget. Knowing that he didn’t kill her, Harry sets out to find the missing woman by using a set of her photos as a guide into her life. This is a first rate mystery with lots of twists and turns. I foun ...more
Pulls all the the threads together nicely. Good popcorn mystery.
An amazing mystery novel written with a real mastery of twists and character building. A real surprise and definitely one of the best novels I read these past few years. I would recommend it to everyone, and not only fans of thrillers.
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In a writing career spanning more than twenty years, Robert Goddard's novels have been described in many different ways - mystery, thriller, crime, even historical romance. He is the master of the plot twist, a compelling and engrossing storyteller and one of the best known advocates for the traditional virtues of pace, plot and narrative drive.
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