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Murder In Thrall

(New Scotland Yard/Doyle and Acton #1)

3.70  ·  Rating details ·  2,378 ratings  ·  443 reviews
From Anne Cleeland comes the first in a captivating new mystery series, following the perilous exploits of two Scotland Yard detectives as they track down London's most elusive killer. . . First-year detective Kathleen Doyle and Chief Inspector Michael Sinclair, Lord Acton, are a most unlikely pair. An Irish redhead of humble beginnings and modest means, Doyle is the antit ...more
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published July 30th 2013 by Kensington (first published January 1st 2013)
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zendegy he certainly seems like a stalker to me. frankly, i find the dynamic between Doyle and Acton creepy and it bothers me to see it presented as romantic.…morehe certainly seems like a stalker to me. frankly, i find the dynamic between Doyle and Acton creepy and it bothers me to see it presented as romantic. controlling men are not romantic. they are dangerous.(less)

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3.70  · 
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 ·  2,378 ratings  ·  443 reviews

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Oct 14, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: mystery-suspense
This book was such a surprise! I had expected a quality mystery, but got something I find hard to classify. It is part mystery, part Fifty Shades, and part absurdity. I don't like writing negative reviews, but this book really irked me. It wasn't just disappointing it was disturbing, because the main character, DC Doyle, is so compliant and weird. I think we're supposed to read this amazing chemistry into her relationship with DCI Acton (her boss and STALKER), but it is just creepy. I don't want ...more
First rate- truly first rate - murder mystery!! And wonderful and original contemporary romance as well, the way both of these were interwoven into each other was so integral to the story - one couldn't have existed without the other.

I adored the author's voice - and hence the h, bcos the book was in her POV - she was so adorable and brave and humble and quirky and smart and kind and generous and loving - one of the best flawed h's I ever read. The H was brilliant but obsessive - the real deal,
Jul 17, 2013 rated it did not like it
I won this book through a Goodreads First Read giveaway and I wish that I could rate it higher but I just can't. The story is told primarily through the POV of Kathleen Doyle, a rookie in Scotland Yard, as she gets pulled into a murder investigation by a famous and higher ranking veteran officer. We're given the reasons for Doyle's special abilities that would justify such an elevation of responsibility but, frankly, she never came across as particulary bright to me.

The high ranking officer who
Shirley Mckinnon
Aug 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is without doubt the best crime novel I have read for ages! I couldn't put it down, and when I finished it, I immediately started it all over again. The most wonderful twist, totally engaging characters and a great story. Well done Anne Cleeland, please get the next one asap!! Love Acton, love Doyle and can't say anything more without giving the whole thing away. Best of the best.
Rgreader got me interested in this series and in between HPlandia outings, this is better than binging on Britbox.

Excellent series and AC has the knack of blending a super stalkerific hero with a very savvy unicorn grooming heroine and a lot of excellent mystery. I cannot recommend these enough, the whole series is captivating, intriguing and so much fun to read.
Delighted is what I am with this new mystery from Anne Cleeland. It has me speaking like the fair lass, DC Kathleen Doyle, that is half of the Scotland Yard team in this first in the series of Acton and Doyle Scotland Yard Mysteries. Cleeland presents this story in a fresh, original style that opens each chapter with the very private thoughts of Chief Inspector Michael Sinclair, who also happens to be Lord Acton and the other half of the Scotland Yard team and brilliant, revered detective. Acton ...more
Jul 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing
By far this is my favorite book by Anne Cleeland right now. In fact, it's so awesome I want to either re-read it or get my hands onto the next book in series which will only be out in summer next year.

If I was attempting to describe this book I would have said it's an unholy mix of Peabody (a secondary heroine from In Death series by Nora Roberts) and Sherlock (the brilliant character from the newest BBC adaptation) with a pinch of Ben Aaronovitch' Peter Grant series.

This is a classic mystery
Review written April 17, 2017

3.9 Stars - Slightly tricky crime but captivating good. Hooked by these characters and style. Wanted just more


A crime thriller with a splash of romantic suspense. Part #1 in a the New Scotland Yard / Doyle and Acton series (5 books so far).

Kathleen Doyle a fresh Detective Constable in London is lucky to get the chance to work with the very famous Scotland Yard's Chief Inspector, Michael Sinclair, Lord Acton. Investigatin
May 01, 2014 rated it did not like it
One -- I don't think it's a horrible spoiler to say this is one of those blended romance/murder mysteries. Which there seems to be a market for, but I don't much like.
Secondly, oh my goodness one of the protagonists is uber creepy, and while I'm only half way thru the book right now, it doesn't look like the other protagonist shares my point of view about this even a little and that's skeeving me out even more.
I suspect i'll end up finding the mystery itself interesting enough, but the trapping
Apr 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: contemporary
After reading my friend's Ira's review, I decided to give this series a try and I was not sorry! ;-)

English is not my mother tongue and spoken Irish is incomprehensible to me, but here I loved the way Kathleen "spoke"! I totally could get her jokes and quips! :)

She's just the perfect woman for Michael! He's stiff and stolkerish while she's shy, under educated and religious, but things are not just that simple!

Acton has actually stolkered Doyle and we are left to understand what happened to him t
Favorite book of 2017.

The hero......gawd I love him. Obsessed. Devious. Stalker. Totally into the heroine. Would slay dragons for the heroine. Sigh. Yessssss.

The heroine.....likable. Capable. Ordinary. I like that she goes to Church tho wish she was more of practicing before marriage she does but not birth control...inconsistent but at least she's a virgin and the hero her only lover....

The storytelling....compelling. I read and couldn't stop. An all nighter.

On to the next book i
Lee Holz
Jul 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
In picking books to read, I usually rely most heavily on the description, and such was the case with “Murder in Thrall” by Anne Cleeland. To make it sweeter, I won my copy in a giveaway. I’m very fond of British police procedurals, and this one is a crackerjack! I can’t say anything about the plot (except that it kept me turning the pages and not wanting to put the book down) without creating spoilers, and the plot twists and developments are half the fun of this rewarding read. I ...more
Gosh! I love this book! ❤

A stalker hero, no really, he admitted himself, he is a Section Seven, a stalker toward heroine.
Every chapter in this book started with his mind of thinking. Honestly, I would find it creepy if I’m not sure how the heroine thought about him.
Oh well, she looking at him with her eyes full of stars! 😂😂
And she doesn’t mind and secretly thrilled 😳😂

This two have a dysfunctional sweet relationship, 🙄😂

I don’t mind either, give me a stalker hero who crazy about the heroine anytim
Leslie Zampetti
Jul 23, 2013 rated it did not like it
Cleeland obviously intends for this series to be a blend of police procedural and romance with a frisson of the supernatural to boot. (Her heroine has a touch of fey.)

An intriguing premise, but Cleeland's writing is repetitive, her narrative confusing in critical spots, and her crime plot thin & predictable.

I did finish it - but honestly, I wish I hadn't. Murder in Thrall reads as if E.L. James decided to knock off Elizabeth George.
Murder in Thrall
2 Stars

In one word: Disappointing.

While the basic premise of a young, female Detective Constable working together with a more experienced Detective Chief Inspector who just happens to be a Peer (think the Inspector Lynley series) is very appealing, Cleeland’s execution leaves much to be desired.

To begin with, aside from her almost psychic ability to read people’s emotional status, Kathleen Doyle is a TSTL heroine and her contribution to the investigation is minimal at best. Mich
*The Angry Reader*
Apr 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: best-of-2016, 2016
Okay. Realistically this is a 4 star book. But it's my review, and I'll do what I want.

I. Loved. This. Book. Like weird-girly-squeal loved it.

Plot summary thingy - Acton is a genius detective with a teeny mental issue. Doyle is a lowly cop. They work together. And a relationship develops. (There. That sounded reasonable, didn't it?)

It's a murder mystery. And a romance. (Hehehe. Sure. I'll call it a romance.)

For me a good book is about the holy trinity - writing, characters or plot. Give me any
I really enjoyed this very British book and am looking forward to book 2, though the ending disappointed--all of those murders remain officially unsolved. I am curious to see if there is any follow.up in Bk 2.
Jan 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Murder In Thrall is book one in the New Scotland Yard/Doyle and Acton, series by Anne Cleeland. New Scotland Yard Detective Kathleen Doyle was team up with Chief Inspector Michael Sinclair to investigate the death of a horse trainer. At first chance, the murder of the horse trainer was a simple case of being in the wrong place and the wrong time. However, the longer the investigation went on, the more dangerous it becomes for both Sinclair and Doyle. The readers of Murder In Thrall will continue ...more
May 29, 2015 rated it really liked it
I had the opportunity to read one of the author's regency era books and loved her writing, the characters, dialogue and suspense so I was eager to give her contemporary detective romantic suspense a try. This Scotland Yard police procedural was a lovely surprise and a fantastic reading experience and I definitely want to keep going with the series.

The story opens with Detective Constable Kathleen Doyle out on a new case with her lead, Detective Chief Inspector Lord Acton. She has been his junior
Sep 16, 2015 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
I received an early eArc from Netgalley. I love British mysteries. I have to admit that I have not been reading straight mysteries for a while. But, this mystery does have a twist in it and it makes it more interesting. Murder in Thrall is the story about a DC, Kathleen Doyle, from Dublin who moves to London to work for the police and is given a chance to work with one of the most famous investigators on the force who also happens to be an aristocrat, Lord Acton. Part of what is interesting abou ...more
Feb 21, 2017 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: NO ONE
Dear Anne Cleeland,

STOP GLAMORIZING ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIPS AS ROMANTIC! This would have been an alright mystery novel if the author had left out the incredibly disturbing relationship. Everything I say now is not a spoiler, it happens fast.


Let me say that again for those in the back, HE. IS. A. STALKER. Unapologetically so. He tells her to her face. She knows he's a stalker, and because she's impetuous(?) she just decides to marry him, before dating, and pretty much modifies
Nov 19, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: library
Interesting twist on the British mystery procedural mold - throwing in an obsessive love story to boot.
Deb Jones
Jan 20, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: series
For the whodunit and police procedural aspect of the plot, I give this book 4 stars, hands down. So why the three star rating then? Chief Inspector Acton, one of the two main protagonists, is not only a brilliant detective and a lord of the realm, but an obsessed stalker.

The object of his obsession is a first-year detective constable, Kathleen Doyle, whom Acton has taken under his wing at work. Their relationship develops and is the second main plot line of the story.

I almost didn't read past th
Marcia Ferguson
Oct 22, 2013 rated it liked it
In all honesty, I was 'across the board' as far as ratings stars go. It's one of the very few books I've ever read, where I've gone from disliking it to steadily building to liking parts by the end, very much. If new readers have no problem with the first of the book, I'd say you'll very much enjoy it. For me, it took some getting used to. Ms. Cleeland has a fascinating (?) way of unveiling events - and approaching the timeline ... her epilogue is a prologue at the end of the book. I've never se ...more
Overall rating: 4 "Sector Seven" stars!

Cheating: (view spoiler)
Sex with om/ow: (view spoiler)
Love triangle: (view spoiler)
Intimate pasts: (view spoiler)
SB*needs low angst books*
2 to 2.5 stars
I really wanted to like this book since I do enjoy a good romantic suspense.

This is the story of Kathleen who is a detective and someone who is can tell when someone is telling the truth or not. She is taken under the wing of Chief Inspector Michael Sinclair and begins working with him on a specific case. They also begin a personal relationship while they work as well.

The story is mostly told from heroine pov with a little pov from the hero. I honestly had a had time getting thru t
Dec 28, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had not read a synopsis of Murder In Thrall but chose it to read due to a very favorable review that gave away little plot information due to avoiding spoilers. I was expecting a British Police Procedural which I really enjoy. Upon starting reading, I thought this is really good. Then very early into the book, I thought this is getting pretty creepy. The book was turning into a relationship book more than a mystery. There were plenty of murders but the relationship took center stage. I am not ...more
Varied Books
Feb 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
4.25 stars

Not my usual read. Sex was fade to black though there was some kissing. This was a fun quirky mystery/romance. I really liked the MC. Their interactions w/ the side characters was fun.

3rd ppov; 95% from h.
reeder (reviews)
Mar 03, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of 1990s romance
Murder in Thrall is an old-school romance cleverly disguised as a police procedural.

Kathleen Doyle is a first-year detective constable in the criminal investigation division of Scotland Yard. She's young, poor, Irish, mostly orphaned, not well-educated, and...fey. She has a rare talent for spotting a lie and reading people's emotions that has served her well in interrogation situations (which is her saving grace, because she's a complete duffer at the analytical and scientific aspects of crimina
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Is Doyle TSTL? 3 52 Dec 31, 2014 01:29PM  
Goodreads Librari...: consolidate multiple postings 2 25 Aug 23, 2014 09:12PM  
The Mystery, Crim...: British detective series giveaway 1 23 May 19, 2013 10:29AM  

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Anne Cleeland writes a contemporary Scotland Yard mystery series that is featured in the Amazon top 100 best sellers. She also writes a historical series of stand-alone books set in the Regency period. A member of International Thriller Writers, The Historical Novel Society, and Mystery Writers of America, she lives in California and has four children.; @annecleeland.

Other books in the series

New Scotland Yard/Doyle and Acton (10 books)
  • Murder in Retribution (New Scotland Yard/Doyle and Acton, #2)
  • Murder in Hindsight (New Scotland Yard/Doyle and Acton, #3)
  • Murder in Containment (New Scotland Yard/Doyle and Acton, #4)
  • Murder in All Honour (New Scotland Yard/Doyle and Acton, #5)
  • Murder in Shadow (New Scotland Yard/Doyle and Acton, #6)
  • Murder in Misdirection (New Scotland Yard/Doyle and Acton, #7)
  • Murder in Spite (New Scotland Yard/Doyle and Acton, #8)
  • Murder in Just Cause (The Doyle & Acton #9)
  • Murder in the Blood: A Doyle & Acton Murder Mystery (The Doyle & Acton Murder Series Book 10)
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