MyGoodBookshelf's Reviews > Not Dead Yet

Not Dead Yet by Peter James
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Jun 13, 2012

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bookshelves: fiction, crime
Read on June 12, 2012

We *know* Bella Moy likes Malteser’s, you don’t have to tell us every. single. book! (3.5 stars)

I love Peter James’ Roy Grace books, so it was safe to say that I was really eager to read the eighth in the series. And I enjoyed it (of course I did, it’s Peter James!)- but admittedly I did find it to be a weaker read than his other books, which really pains me to admit. This is for a number of reasons, but for me... (*back off now and stop reading as there may be a possible spoiler here!*)


...the main bone of contention is that I genuinely don’t know how much longer he can keep the whole ‘Sandy’ saga going for. I’m frustrated with it at this point. It’s brilliantly done of course, but its EIGHT books later now and I would like some kind of resolution there soon. I’m getting fed up that it just doesn’t seem to be moving on quickly enough.

Also, we know Bella Moy likes Malteser’s. He tells us that every. single. book. There are other tiny little aspects like this too, that just seems to be constantly reiterated and are becoming defining character trademarks. I get that possibly there needs to be a re-hash with some back story and characters etc for those people that perhaps haven’t read the series from the beginning but by now (and I’m sure a lot of other fans will agree) it unfortunately feels a bit repetitive- like slipping on a pair of comfy slippers.

Good aspects though: the storyline was a bit different this time, with more links to America where obviously Peter James spends a lot of time so it added a bit of variety in that respect. It was an interesting premise with the subject matter of actors, obsessive fan-stalkers and of course, Brighton and The Royal Pavilion’s history- which I found really fascinating. There were some pretty gruesome deaths too which left me wincing a bit- there’s no denying that James’ can write a pretty gory crime scene when he wants to! The writing as ever flows brilliantly, and though some of the storyline seemed a bit far-fetched in places I did still find it to be gripping with a few really good twists. I also liked the author’s nods to social networking and some real-life actors and actresses- it made it feel very ‘now’ and provided shreds of believability.

In terms of characters I really appreciated how Glenn Branson is stepping up to the plate a bit more. I love his and Roy’s relationship and its good getting to know him more and more as the books go on. All the regular cast of characters are back here with a few new faces to get to know, so personally I would recommend reading these books in their intended order- as there is some back story that newer readers would be completely unfamiliar with.

Though regrettably I didn’t enjoy the book as much as his others (obviously), I did still find it to be a page turner and of course I’m glad I read it as I love the series overall, so in that respect it was worth the wait- I’m sure the great majority of his fans will concede with that statement. However, I’m really hoping that the next one picks itself up to be on a par with some of the earlier books.

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