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Written in Bones (Inspector McLean, #7)
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Written in Bones

(Inspector McLean #7)

4.25  ·  Rating details ·  954 Ratings  ·  141 Reviews
The roots of murder run deep...

A body is found in a tree in the Meadows, Edinburgh's beautiful public park. The forensics suggest that the corpse has fallen from a height - but was it an accident or a shocking message?

The dead man had led quite a life - a disgraced ex-cop turned criminal kingpin and, most recently, the head of a celebrated charity.

As McLean investigates, h
Hardcover, 464 pages
Published February 23rd 2017 by MICHAEL JOSEPH
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Jan Ashley Emma is still living with Tony. Not going to say too much as it will spoil the story. Why not just read it?
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Feb 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
The opening sequence to this novel has DI Tony McLean at a Edinburgh park where a gruesomely tortured and mutilated body hangs skewered onto a tree's branches. It was discovered by a young boy, the son of Tommy Johnston, a murdered crime boss. The boy described a dragon in the sky from where the body dropped. This has the media captivated and brings undue pressure from the police hierarchy on Tony to solve the case as soon as possible. The body is hard to identify but Tony begins to have a dread ...more
Feb 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
A really unusual and interesting mystery lies at the heart of this police procedural set in the city of Edinburgh. A body is found high up in a tree in one of the city's parks. Forensics reveal that the body was dropped from a great height, and reveal injuries consistent with having been beaten prior to falling.

Leading the investigation is DI Tony McLean, though right from the start it's an uphill climb, as police funding cuts, and the insistence from his superiors that he brings this investigat
Mar 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is the 7th and most recent book in this very good series by Scottish author James Oswald. I was offered the chance to read the 1st book in this series a short while ago and after reading the first couple of chapters I was already thinking about reading the other six books in the series.
I have enjoyed this series so much I have read them consecutively due to my enjoyment of the characters, sub plots and quirky story lines. I would strongly recommend anyone wishing to read the series read the
This is a fantastic police crime thriller which grabs the reader and puts them right in the heart of the action from the very start! The author is skilled at bringing everything to life in the imagination of the reader - I could imagine most of the events unfolding before my very eyes, as if I actually witnessed them.

When a ten year old boy out walking his dog, runs home claiming that a body has been dropped from the sky and into a tree his Mum doesn’t believe him. When she checks, she reluctant
Mar 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
There is an undercurrent of supernatural shenanigans is this series, just a trickle, a slight sprinkling if you will, one that's been building and building, ever so slowly, since the first book. It makes itself a little more aware in this one, like a half-hearted jazz hands with only one hand. This makes me excited for the next one. Please let that be soon!!

As Gary said in his wonderful review it is better to read this series in order to fully appreciate each and every thing that happens. If you
Apr 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have never read any of James Oswald's McLean books which is a shame as I think I would have got more out of it as there were a lot of references to things that had happened in previous stories. That said it didn't take me long to warm to the character of Tony McLean and become involved in the story. Any story that starts with a body descending from a great height & becoming entangled in a tree has certainly got to grab the attention!

This was an gripping police procedural tale. There were l
Mar 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
enjoyed the latest in the series and felt the darkside fall over Edinburgh again as the team looks for a the murder of an ex policeman found impaled in a tree but so many red herring until it becomes clearer what it is all about. felt that the series is getting better with each book.
Sid Nuncius
Feb 15, 2017 rated it it was ok
I thought this was a fairly competent but rather uninspiring police procedural. It is the seventh in a series which I hadn't come across before but it can be read as a stand-alone book.

It's a good opening: a body falls and is impaled on a large tree in Edinburgh, and it's unclear how or why he got there and even who the victim is. A story then unfolds of murder, drug gangs, suspicions of police corruption and so on. To me the whole thing felt a bit clunky and artificial, from the hostile senior
Micky Brand
Mar 19, 2017 rated it liked it
I'm a big fan of the DI McLean series and I await each new addition in February with abated breath. James Oswald has also become one of my favourite authors.

The premise of the story was quite fetching: a dead body found in a very unusual location - the perfect case for Inspector Tony McLean to be stuck with by his superiors with whom he has never gotten along. Constantly being called out for being a rebel and a magnet for trouble, McLean must solve this case with a small team of very inexperien
Feb 04, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley, 2017
Thank you to NetGalley and the publishers for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

"The roots of murder run deep . . .

When a body is found in a tree in The Meadows, Edinburgh's scenic parkland, the forensics suggest the corpse has fallen from a great height.

Detective Inspector Tony McLean wonders whether it was an accident, or a murder designed to send a chilling message?

The dead man had led quite a life: a disgraced ex-cop turned criminal kingpin who reinvented himself as
Feb 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017
Very enjoyable. Tony McLean is a likeable lead character, and this series hasn't disappointed yet. It all gets wildly improbable towards the end, but I kind of like that.
Aug 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
#7 in Oswald's entertaining Tony McLean series set in Scotland and it was very enjoyable again. A very strange opening scene sees a body falling from a great height and landing in a tree with, well, disastrous results. When Tony and his team discover the criminal identity of the victim the case takes a very weird turn. A police procedural with the usual hint of the supernatural, I really enjoy visiting with these characters, including one who returns after being away for a while and one who myst ...more
Oct 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017challenge
I absolutely love this series. It is one of the series which I would credit with enticing me back to reading in earnest. It is certainly the series that introduced me to the works of Stuart MacBride (readers of the series will understand why) and to be honest, since I started reading again, I have never looked back. And it’s proven to be a very popular series among friends and family too. I passed the bug onto my sister, who passed it onto a friend at work, who passed it onto her husband… Well, ...more
Feb 22, 2017 rated it liked it
Set in Edinburgh, with a lead character, Inspector Tony Mclean, it soon becomes obvious that there were previous stories in the series, which I’ve never read. But this can be enjoyed as a stand alone tale. However I did find the prose clunky. The lead character is a disappointment, seeming to achieve little day after day so it’s a wonder anything gets solved. It completely lacks the urgency and pace of the best police procedurals. Ian Rankin has no need to worry.

DI Tony Mclean, at times, doesn’t
David Gooch
Feb 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Another cracking Inspector McLean book. This one is an odd but great start when a body is found in the tree tops that looks like it can only have got there by dropping it from the sky. Just how have they done that? Enough of a problem for McClean until they discover the dead body is an ex-cop turned bad. Now they have a body that they have to figure out how it got there and have a boat load of people who would want him dead including current members of the force in high ranking positions.
The sto
I love this series so much and this is a corker!

Feb 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Anyone who has ever read a Detective Inspector Tony McLean book knows that there will always be something not quite .. natural, occurring at some point in the story, and this book was no exception. For those who haven't read one of these books before it would be best to start at the beginning of the series because there are many references to previous events.

The story started with a body found in a tree, found by a young boy out walking his dog who claimed that the body was dropped by a dragon!
Bruce Hatton
Jul 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scottish-crime
Having read this novel immediately after reading Ian Rankin’s Rather Be The Devil, I couldn’t help but compare and contrast the two series of crime novels set in the same city; i.e. Edinburgh, Scotland.
The two main differences for me are the emphasis on location and the central character. For Ian Rankin, Edinburgh is so central to his plots, one gets the impression that the crimes happening in his novels couldn’t happen elsewhere. Although James Oswald doesn’t shy away from geographical details,
Nov 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Written in Bones by James Oswald.

This was the 7th in the Inspector McLean series.
A man is floating weightless through the air in semi consciousness. His landing on top of a tree ...falling through the branches that pierced his body resulting in his death. Then a little boy runs home.
Inspector McLean is called to the scene and finds a face so distorted but at the same time something recognizable was there. Someone from a time past, could it be. Was this the body of a former police officer? Who h
Liz Mistry
Dec 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Written In Bones by James Oswald
Set in Edinburgh, Oswald's Detective Tony MacLean books never fail to appeal to me. They are beautifully, almost, poetically, written in parts and this, the seventh in the series is brilliant. A body is found in a tree in The Meadows in Edinburgh and seemingly it fell from a great height. As ever the slight paranormal element to these books enhances the prosaicness of the normal police procedural. i always feel I've experienced another side of Edinburgh when I rea
Feb 26, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery, crime, thriller
This story has a compelling premise that kept me glued to the pages for most of the book. Some of the events weren't as convincing as they should have been. I have to say that the writing style is really the reason I stuck around as opposed to the story, or rather the way the story unfolded. This is the first book I've read by Oswald, and I'm certain it won't be the last. It's an engaging read that fans of mystery/thriller will enjoy.
Catherine Henderson
Jul 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
There's something comforting about reading this series which I've been following from the beginning. Tony McLean is a great character and being an Edinburgh girl I love it being set in my home town. The supernatural element sets it apart from the usual police procedural novel. I read this one on a rainy weekend, time perfectly spent
Jan Ashley
Aug 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
: Couldn't put it down! Inspector McLean does not disappoint. Its like meeting up with an old friend. Still head strong, stepping on peoples toes in order to get the truth. Conspiracy and intrigue, dangerous situations and crossing swords with an old adversary makes for a gripping mystery with the usual hint of the supernatural,,,roll on the next episode. I cant wait!!
Apr 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Audible edition, read by Ian Hanmore: Absolutely brilliant, like the six previous volumes. And I love the way ian Hanmore performs. Just the right ind of voice and tone. Highly recommended.
David Snape
Apr 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
A bit of a Midsummer Murders kind of book but a pretty good mystery to it. A lot of different details to piece together and a surprising ending as well. Well worth a read.
Jo-anne Atkinson
Mar 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
One cold morning a dragon flies over Edinburgh and a man falls from the sky to his death. Of course things are not what they seem at first, the dead man is a former cop and current philanthropist, and dragons don't exist. Recently returned to work after traumatic events in his last case, Tony Maclean is keen to see that the crime is solved. However investigation leads down many paths, uncovering corruption in the force and bringing him closer to his nemesis, Mrs Saifre.

I was drawn to read this b
Elaine Tomasso
Feb 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I would like to thank Netgalley and Penguin UK - Michael Joseph for an advance copy of Written In Bones, the seventh novel to feature Edinburgh based DI Tony McLean.

The novel opens with a man in free fall and then cuts to the discovery of a body in the trees beside the quaintly named Jawbone Walk. It is obvious he has been dropped from a great height but from what? The young boy who heard it thinks it was a dragon but no one else does. The identity of the body puts every senior officer into a pa
Feb 22, 2017 rated it liked it
This is the first book in the Inspector McLean series that I have read and although many books came before it and there were references to past cases, it works brilliantly as a standalone novel. The fact that I hadn't read the other books didn't prevent me from following what was going on. However, for a deeper understanding of McLean's character and past, it would definitely be worth reading the previous books.
The story isn't very fast-paced as the case itself moves along quite slowly, therefo
Colin Mitchell
Mar 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime
Detective Inspector Tony McLean has returned to duty after recovering from his previous exploits and the subsequent inquiry. At once he is into the mysterious death of a former policeman, reformed drug addict, and charity worker Bill Chalmers whose body has been dropped into the top of a tree. This leads him to corruption and malpractice. A supernatural ending that leaves unanswered questions. About 3.5 stars for me.
Mar 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Once again a brilliant book by James Oswald. I eagerly await each new book and this one lived up to my expectations. I love the fact that he isn't scared to change around the team and McLean works with and each book as as fresh as the previous one. Thoroughly recommend.
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Goodreads Librari...: One novel 2 12 Jan 20, 2018 11:38PM  

Other books in the series

Inspector McLean (8 books)
  • Natural Causes (Inspector McLean, #1)
  • The Book of Souls (Inspector McLean, #2)
  • The Hangman's Song (Inspector McLean, #3)
  • Dead Men's Bones (Inspector McLean, #4)
  • Prayer for the Dead (Inspector McLean, #5)
  • The Damage Done (Inspector McLean, #6)
  • The Gathering Dark (Inspector McLean, #8)

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