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Fragile Cord

(DS Coupland #1)

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  1,337 ratings  ·  92 reviews
How far would you go to hide the truth?

A small boy lies drowned in the bottom of a bath
His mother is found with a noose around her neck…

The local community is in shock.

Introducing Salford detectives Kevin Coupland and Alex Moreton as they investigate what appears to be a routine murder-suicide. Tracey Kavanagh was her usual upbeat self; right up until the moment she drowne
ebook, Third, 263 pages
Published April 12th 2015 (first published May 10th 2013)
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Average rating 3.84  · 
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 ·  1,337 ratings  ·  92 reviews

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Aug 07, 2016 rated it it was ok
This book was all over the place. It spent too much time concentrating on the personal lives of the detectives rather than the case itself. This took away a lot of the thrill. Too much time was also spent on descriptions of the city/town of Salford. After the murder/suicide is introduced, there is no progress on the case until you are well toward the end of the book. In an effort to increase suspense, the author leaves threads and jumps somewhere else. This ends up increasing frustration rather ...more
Mark Tilbury
Dec 08, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Two seemingly unrelated investigations become connected when the police realize that links between a murder/suicide and a separate assault might be more than a coincidence.

I was gripped immediately by the prologue of this book and the thoughts of the mother in the school playground. I wondered why she was thinking such things and I had to keep reading.

There are quite a few characters to get to know in one go due to the two investigations. Once I got to know who was who I could concentrate on t
Jun 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime
Really well written, gritty and realistic. The book was thought provoking and the characters believable and well rounded. I especially liked the way the setting (Salford) permeated the book.

The first page can only be described as attention grabbing and hard hitting. The book describes the efforts of those affected to come to terms with the murder / suicide. WHY?!?

We meet people who are desperately trying to cope with their lives - with the the loss of loved ones and the effects of crime and war.
Aug 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Interesting plot, believable characters, realistic writing. There are no unnecessary details, the book is fast-paced and keeps you interested until the end.

The book follows a police enquiry into the shocking murder-suicide that took place within an apparently happy family. Why would a mother (pregnant with a second child) kill her son and then hang herself?

What I really liked about the book is that there are no hints along the way, nothing to make you guess what really happened, so you have to
Oct 20, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A well written debut, with good lead characters in detectives Coupland & Moreton. The story flows nicely, with good pace & twist to the plot, & plenty of intrigue to keep you guessing & hooked. Without giving too much away, there is similarity to a very well know real life case, which seemed very obvious to me, but that could just be me, & I'd like to point out, that not for one moment am I suggesting its a copy of it, or based on it. Hope to see more of this author & hope this is the beginning ...more
Victoria Sayers
Jan 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was really surprised by this. it had me gripped from the start. I think I was expecting it to be a hard book to read given the subject matter but even though the author doesn't pull her punches the detectives working on the case are so fully rounded I ended up being hooked into wanting to find out what happened not just about the two cases that are central to the story but also in Coupland and Moreton's private lives. Would definitely recommend this book and have already started on the follow ...more
May 07, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Fragile Cord is the first book in the DS Coupland series.

I have to say the book description for this novel really grabbed me. I mean why on earth would a mother kill their child and then themselves? What is even weirder is that what looks like two totally unrelated crimes turn out to be connected.

Kevin Coupland and Alex Moreton were characters that I both liked. They are both good at their jobs but are having problems in their personal lives also. I could really sympathise with Alex, as a mother
Jul 13, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really enjoyed this so have downloaded Book 2.
Aug 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Definitely a story that left you pondering
Nov 10, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
Another new author to me but very enjoyable.
Carlton Phelps
Mar 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Gripping From The Beginning

This book grabs you by the throat and doesn't let you go until the last few pages.
There are two stories going on. The first is a murder and the second is a murder or not.
Multiple levels to the characters.
Love, hate, death and self realization.
Karl Wiggins
Jan 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
This story is dirty, gritty and I loved it. Emma Salisbury explores the underbelly of British crime, taking in an assemblage of sordid, shady and sleazy characters along the way as well as a wealthy respectable family with their own unexplainable tragedy to deal with. The two cases are as far apart as it’s possible to be. Obviously, they’re not connected
Many authors suffer from that completely understandable disease of wanting their characters to be liked. Salisbury endures no such misconception
Mary Johnson
Nov 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book held me but not by the tortuous question of who done it or by the twists and turns of those destined to keep you on tenterhooks as you read. It held me with its realism. The police: ordinary people doing and an extraordinary job. The victims: ordinary people just living their lives. The perpetrators of crime: some born to be typecast but not all.....

The book would make a chilling (if not thrilling) TV drama. Mundanity mixed with the cruel, soulless, heartbreaking acts and events that b
Lynda Kelly
Nov 27, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: deleted
Oh dear. Clearly proof-reading has been skipped in this. A real shame as I was enjoying the actual story and there's a lot to learn about the characters but I got totally worn down with the errors throughout and jacked it in at 16%.
Firstly TS Elliot was spelt wrong-it's Eliot and always has been...ouch. There's an issue with capital minute missing where they need to be (exocet) or added where they shouldn't be (Peritonitis/Relatives').
There were a lot of missed commas which you can
Jun 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
This is the first book in the DS Coupland series but I have already read book 3 which I loved so for me this was a case of going back and filling in the gaps. The prologue to the story is a fascinating one. A boy comes out of school and hands his mother a drawing. With this she declares he must be killed. A murder, suicide follows and Coupland and his team are left to try and work out why.

As a first in the series a lot of characters are introduced but I think that this is well done and it isn't
Jul 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is the first book in the DS Coupland series. Detectives Kevin Coupland and Alex Moreton investigate two unrelated crimes, but there is a connection.
The first is a murder / suicide. Tracy Kavanagh a happily married mother, pregnant with her second child, suddenly drowns her young son in the bath and then hangs herself. The other, devoted father Ricky Wilson is brutally stabbed while out with his family, celebrating his wife's birthday.
As Kevin and Alex investigate these crimes, it becomes a
Jillian Higham
Jul 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thought-provoking police procedural

The two protagonists here are DC Alex Moreton and DS Coupland (his first name doesn't matter). The police officers are trying to solve one crime and trying to make sense of another. A mother has killed her small son and then herself with her unborn child and Alex in particular is trying to understand how a mother could do such a thing, because what if one day she snapped and killed her own child? Coupland has his own demons to deal with while trying to make sen
Jun 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A terrific police procedural

Why would a young happily married woman suddenly decide to kill her young son and commit suicide? Alex, the young female detective investigating this with her seasoned partner Detective Coupland, wants desperately know. She also is a young wife with a young son. At the same time, there is an investigation concerning the stabbing murder of a man while on an outing with his family. The story is well done and really kept my attention. The characters were very well devel
Grindingly depressing but at the same time incredibly readable. I have to say I didn't like any of the characters until I was about two-thirds of the way through the story, but they gradually began to grow on me. The writing is great, the plot intricate enough to keep me guessing without becoming farcical and in the end I was left wanting more.

Four stars because early on I nearly gave up reading due to the grimness of it all !
Rebecca Hawkins
Nov 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sad, but things happen.

This story keeps you guessing as to how life cannot be explained. Crime and ignorance will always be here, but there will be those who work for justice and in this case...truth. Children are to be loved and protected. Can the past control the future? Find out in this story.
Jun 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a cracker! Tightly written, engaging and satisfyingly complex...a book to get your teeth into. Relate-able main characters and secondary characters that you just hope get through their troubles. The baddies are mostly one dimensional...but they are going to jail anyway...I'll definitely be looking for more from this author and from this series! Well done! ...more
Crystal w
Aug 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a great book, it does slow down in certain areas but keeps you reading. It follows a suicide and the detectives are trying to figure out why she did. Who would kill themselves and child. It seems unheard of. Well you follow the detectives and what they think and all that. It was really good and very interesting.
Staci Muir
Sep 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
Started this book slightly puzzled as to which crime was the main plot but as the book progressed it all made more sense, this book shows all too well that appearances can be deceptive, the mothers character was (imo) similar to a swan....appears graceful, elegant, and tranquil-yet no one knows if it's paddling like f*** under water.
Definitely worth reading.
Opal Sibley
Jun 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thought provoking

The characters came to life and you could almost see them. At times it was difficult to read because it was so real and the subject matter involved tragedy.
I appreciated how the author intertwined the characters actions.
robert hinkle
Oct 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I really enjoyed this book. Emma Salisbury is a person to watch. I believe that she will go down as one of the best writers. Fragile Cord is a very good book. Well written!!
Mar 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
Unusual storyline, very well thought out.
Julie Powell
Aug 29, 2015 rated it really liked it
A good, well written mystery that keeps you turning the pages.

A murder /suicide - why? That is the interesting hook.

Believable characters and a realistic and intriguing plot.
Apr 10, 2016 rated it liked it
Good read. I know there is another book after this one but don't know if any more after that. Would be nice if there was. ...more
Jun 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Thoroughly enjoyed this - extremely well written, great plot & characters that you want to follow!!!!
Trina Miller
Jun 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Edge of your seat

Very captivating story. Holds your interest all the way to the end. I do wish the cop had told the father the rest of the story though.
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I write gritty, crime fiction that focuses on the 'why'dunnit as well as the 'who'. I worked for a housing association supporting socially excluded men and women with their return into society, which provided me with a lot of inspiration. If you like hard-boiled crime writer Stuart MacBride then my Scottish crime series is for you. Fans of Ian Rankin and Mark Billingham-style police procedurals sh ...more

Other books in the series

DS Coupland (5 books)
  • A Place of Safety (DS Coupland, #2)
  • One Bad Turn (DS Coupland, #3)
  • Absent (DS Coupland, #4)
  • The DS Coupland Box Set (SD Coupland #1-3)

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“they didn’t operate quickly Peritonitis would set in. Coupland attempted to speak to the man’s distraught wife, Melanie, but a brief” 0 likes
“Does it not get any easier?’ Coupland ventured, guessing the answer. ‘During the day I’ll be doing something completely inconsequential and I’ll be reminded of her…only now I find myself forgetting how she looked or how her voice sounded, as though my mind is somehow relegating her to the past before I’m ready…and I feel guilty and frightened that one day I’ll forget her altogether. I mean…I know I should let her go, that she isn’t in this world anymore, but she’s in my world, and that should count for something, right?’ Coupland” 0 likes
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