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A Death in the Family

(Detective Kubu #5)

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  322 ratings  ·  68 reviews
'There's no easy way to say this, Kubu. Your father's dead. I'm afraid he's been murdered.'

Faced with the violent death of his own father, even Assistant Superintendent David ‘Kubu’ Bengu, Botswana CID's keenest mind, is baffled. Who would kill such a frail old man? The picture becomes even murkier with the apparent suicide of a government official. Are Chinese mine-owners
Kindle Edition, 368 pages
Published October 28th 2015 by ORENDA BOOKS (first published October 27th 2015)
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4.02  · 
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 ·  322 ratings  ·  68 reviews

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Miriam Smith
Apr 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: orenda
"A Death in the Family" is the fifth in the Detective Kubu series set in Botswana, South Africa and my third foray into these exciting and hugely entertaining stories. As international thrillers go you'd be hard pushed in my opinion, to find a better series to indulge in. The author Michael Stanley (South African born writing duo Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip) have created a top notch and totally compelling Botswana police series, that is both atmospheric, gripping and utterly loveable.
Aug 13, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip known collectively as Michael Stanley bring us a brand new gripping story featuring Detective Kubu. A Death in the Family follows on from Deadly Harvest, that I read not so long ago.

This is a fabulous series, with just the right touch of noir. The series feels familiar now, with Kubu, his colleagues and family; plus the gorgeous setting of Botswana.I loved Kubu’s visit to America and see a whole different, contrasting colder culture.

This time, Kubu is dealing wi
Mar 07, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-detective
Another excellent addition to the Detective David "Kubu" Bengu series. When his father is stabbed to death, Kubu cannot stay away from the investigation, with his ego trumping common sense. Meanwhile, there is trouble in a mining town as the elders consider whether to allow expansion and relocation of residents, which went badly the last time, antagonizing the young and unemployed. When the #2 government mining official ends up dead, an apparent suicide, Kubu finally finds a distraction from his ...more
Kate~Bibliophile Book Club
Jul 15, 2016 rated it really liked it

I am loving this series!!! Detective Kubu is just such a likeable character that it’s hard not to enjoy these books. Having read Deadly Harvest I was excited to read the next installment.

A Death in the Family opens with a bit of a shock. Kubu’s dad, Wilmon, has been murdered. I loved his character in Deadly Harvest, so I was a bit sad to read that this stoic, strong man had been killed. I felt a huge array of emotions for Kubu too. It’s not difficult to see the love and respect he had for his fa
Nerdish Mum
Oct 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2015, ebook
I received an advance e-book copy of A Death in the Family by Michael Stanley directly from the author in exchange for an honest review.

A Death in the Family is the fifth outing for Detective Kubu and is written by Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip (known together as Michael Stanley). I always find it mind boggling when more than one person has written a book as to how they can get on and make their ideas work together and yet these two are on their fifth book.

I've never read a Kubu book before
Oct 02, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Booktrail locations: Death in the Family

This is only the second book I’ve read in the series but I feel as if I’ve known Kubu for ages. I felt a gamut of emotions with this book from sadness to fear as it was an eye opener in many ways to Botswana culture, looking at how death and its aftermath and how the local community come together but are still separated between male and female duties and expectations

I really felt for poor Kubu!

I also really enjoyed learning about the mining storyline – we
Rachel Hall
Jul 14, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Despite this only being my second read in this exceptional series, set in modern day Botswana, the writing duo of Michael Stanley (Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip) have already established a firm place on my 'must read' list. The star of this series is the endearing and passionate Assistant Superintendent David 'Kubu' Bengu, a man with a remarkably big appetite for food, opera music, his family and ensuring that justice is served. Kubu's focus is all about improving the lives of his fellow nat ...more
Jul 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
Even thought this is the fifth book in the series, I do think the books work quite well as stand alone novels.

I absolutely love Kubu. He come's across as being quite a big gentle giant and the relationship between him and his wife Joy is something I will never tire of reading. There is a lot of of love between the two of them and I love how he usually is always in Joy's bad books but that's because she really cares about Kubu and wants nothing to happen to him.

The death of Kubu's father totally
Gloria Feit
Oct 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This latest Detective Kubu Mystery is a gem, although the Botswana assistant superintendent of its CID is one frustrated detective throughout most of the novel. At the start, his father is killed by a lethal knife wound, and Kubu is told by his boss to take a week off and stay away completely from the investigation. But can he? Of course not. Especially when no progress seems likely as the case progresses. Will he compromise the case, should the culprit be apprehended?

Then another case seems to
Marina Sofia
Jul 18, 2016 rated it really liked it
It starts with a family tragedy and ends up as a much more entangled, complicated tale of international corporate interests and corruption. The scenes of Kubu in the US were perhaps not strictly speaking necessary, but they were funny.
Dec 07, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thank you to Orenda books for providing me with a copy of this book for review.

A Death in the Family is the fifth book in the Detective Kubu series but can certainly be read as a standalone novel.

Assistant Superintentant David ‘Kubu’ Bengu is Botswana CID’s best detective. After many years of crime-solving, Kubu finds himself on the other side of the desk, so to speak, when his father is found murdered. Understandably devastated by the loss of his father, Kubu struggles with the knowledge that h
Aug 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
A Death in the Family is book 5 in the Detective Kubu series written by brilliant writing team, Michael Stanley (Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip).

It’s so good to have Kubu back! At the start of August I had my first introduction to the very likeable Assistant Superintendent David ‘Kubu’ Bengu when I reviewed the wonderful Deadly Harvest. If you missed that review, you can check it out by clicking here. I was so looking forward to catching up with the man affectionately named ‘hippo’ once again
Karl Jorgenson
An amazing book from Michael and Stanley, amazing for its contradictions and irony.
Detective Kubu is an assistant superintendent with the Botswana police. In this mystery, Kubu's elderly, early-onset Alzheimer father is murdered for no apparent reason. The village of Shoshong, like a lot of small towns in Iowa and Botswana, is in decline, with no decent employment for your men. There's a proposal to expand the local Uranium mine, it would be a hog operation in Iowa, but there's some question whe
Dec 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really, REALLY hope this is not the last in the Detective Kubu series! This one is a very heart-rending and personal story for Assistant Superintendent David "Kubu" Bengu, who works in CID out of Gabarone, Botswana, in which he is awakened in the middle of the night to be told that his father has died--and worse, has been brutally murdered. Kubu's father, an aging man in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease, was his hero and they were very close, so imagine his dismay when he is instructed ...more
Breakaway Reviewers
A very readable detective story

Faced with the violent death of his own father, Assistant Superintendent David 'Kubu' Bengu is baffled. Who would kill such a frail old man? Kubu's frustration grows as his boss, Director Mabaku, bans him from being involved in the investigation. The picture becomes even murkier with the apparent suicide of a government official. Are Chinese mine-owners involved? And what role does the US Embassy have to play?

This is the fifth instalment of the author's Detective
Paul Allard
Detective novel set in Botswana but for Kudu, this time it's personal!
The fifth in the series but the first for me, this detective story takes place in Botswana with Detective Kudu at the centre of the story. The plot involves several murders and some corruption in high places regarding a mining project.
The characters are well-defined but the book could have been shorter: it's a bit drawn-out in the first half then accelerates towards the end. Enjoyable enough without being overwhelming and not
Oct 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As an early reviewer I had the pleasure of reading my first Detective Kubu Mystery. I was familiar with Botswana through another series which I feel served to train me to appreciate Michael Stanley's series all that much more.

The premise is set up well as the detective is having to face the murder of his father. Without giving away too much the dialogue and plot do well to carry the action forward and keep the reader engaged. There were a few times I read into the wee hours of the night.

The ch
Moushumi Ghosh
Aug 20, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is my first full length Michael Stanley novel featuring Inspector Kubu. I adored the idea of a Botswanaian police procedural that steps away from the philosophical Mma Ramotswe mysteries. All the characters are well etched. The different strands of the same story come together at the end. Read because you love post colonial African detective fiction.
Cynthia Pratt
I hoped to enjoy this because of the setting of Botswana. While it was quite an involved mystery and the characters were interesting, I had expected a different approach to crime solving more in touch with the community and more charismatic detective. I probably will try another of these books at some time but better ones are calling me now.
Jan 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was so disappointed that this was the last book in the series, but when I wrote the authors on another matter, they said that there was a new one in the works and it would be out in July in the UK and in October in the US.

So glad as it was a neat series and getting better all the time.
Mar 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Kubu is amazing every time.
Vallery Feldman
I've read and enjoyed the other books with Detective Kubu. This one felt flat. I'm generally not a fan of authors killing of family members of the protagonist. What was missing was the wonderful sense of place that are in the previous books. The story felt disjointed and not up to their usual standard.
Nov 21, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
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The authors manage to combine a tragic murder with traditions and customs of Botswana creating an intriguing read. The setting isn't described as much as I would have liked, however, the details of traditions and customs filled the deficit.

The reader senses the frustration and profound grief of law enforcement professional David 'Kubu' Bengu as his father is tragically murder and he is barred from participating in the murder investigati
Nov 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This mystery, #5 in the series featuring Botswana policeman David "Kubu" Bengu, was just plain excellent. It was a well-plotted police procedural that allowed the reader to fully follow the Botswana crime-solving process, which is similar to that in the US.

In this installment, the reader learns about the kgotla system for making decisions in the many small villages of Botswana, under which each village is run by a tribal chief and elders. And we find out that mining in Botswana goes well beyond
Kwei Quartey
Jul 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the 5th novel in Michael Stanley's Detective Kubu series set in Botswana, one of Sub-Saharan Africa's most promising nations. This time, tragedy strikes Asst. Superintendent David Kubu Bengu when his own father is murdered. What follows is a very frustrating time for Kubu as his irascible boss Mabaku bars him from any participation in the investigation because of Kubu's obvious closeness to the victim. I certainly felt the frustration myself. On the one hand I understand Mabaku's wanting ...more
Jul 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good mystery set in Botswana. Kubu's father is killed and he is told he can't participate in the investigation. He does and keeps getting reprimanded. He then is assigned the death of a government official and it ends up being tied into his fathers murder. There is a mine in the area that wants to expand and it would displace a lot of local villagers and the villagers are split whether to let the mine expand or not. The chief is murdered and some elders. The clues lead to either the mine execu ...more
Dec 02, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Love Kubu, dislike stereotyping of Chinese people in Botswana

This series reminds me fondly of what it was like to live in Gabs for five months. But, the plot in this novel in particular hinges on racist caricatures of Chinese people. Botswana is proud of its history of anti-racism in the face of neighboring South Africa's ApartHate. This book made me very aware that the authors are not Batswana at all, but South African and White. Retired professors should know better. Stereotype US Americans al
Jun 27, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's been a while since I read one of these, but I'd forgotten the stark contrast between this depiction of Botswana, as a nation as flawed as most others, and that if Alexander McCall Smith, whose Botswana is idyllic, full of polite, respectful people who might succumb to greed, bad judgment, or witchcraft from time to time, but not much worse than that. In the Botswana of detective Kubu Bengu, all manner of nasty things are afoot, including political corruption, mineral exploitation, foreign i ...more
Meg Thomas
Mar 25, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library
A quality installment, and I enjoyed the Chinese element to the whole thing. Thought the interactions with the Chinese were believable, but overall this series just leaves me kind of cold. It's not as warm as the No 1 Ladies Detective Agency, but not as exciting as some other mystery series' set in Africa. Overall just kind of ho hum.
Susan Kosel
May 28, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful characters.
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Michael Stanley is the writing partnership of Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip. Michael lives in Johannesburg, South Africa, and Stanley in Minneapolis.
We have travelled extensively in southern africa and have a special love of Botswana, where our detective novels are set.

Detective Kubu investigates complex murders in his native land, justifying his nickname by his size and tenacity (Kubu is Sets

Other books in the series

Detective Kubu (7 books)
  • A Carrion Death (Detective Kubu, #1)
  • The Second Death Of Goodluck Tinubu (Detective Kubu, #2)
  • Death of the Mantis (Detective Kubu, #3)
  • Deadly Harvest (Detective Kubu, #4)
  • Dying to Live (Detective Kubu #6)
  • Facets of Death