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3.95  ·  Rating details ·  932 ratings  ·  213 reviews
A true-crime podcast sets a housewife's present life on a collision course with her secret past.

The day Anna McDonald's quiet, respectable life explodes starts off like all the days before: packing up the kids for school, making breakfast, listening to yet another true crime podcast. Then her husband comes downstairs with an announcement, and Anna is suddenly, shockingly a
Hardcover, 376 pages
Published June 18th 2019 by Mulholland Books (first published May 16th 2019)
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3.95  · 
Rating details
 ·  932 ratings  ·  213 reviews

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If there is only one crime thriller book you read this year, make sure it is this one from the award winning Scottish writer, Denise Mina. This is a markedly different read from her previous works, it has a lightness of touch, is darkly humorous, relevant in our contemporary world of #MeToo, and utterly riveting. The well to do Anna McDonald is married to lawyer, Hamish, and has two young daughters, Jess and Lizzie. Anna is a true crime podcast obsessive, her latest one is entitled Death and the ...more
Holly  B

Anna McDonald, is an ordinary wife, mom, and pod-cast junkie. One day her life gets turned upside-down when her latest episode titled "Death and the Dana" hits a little too close to home.

Anna decides to investigate the unsolved crime herself. The crime involves a sunken yacht in the Mediterranean and multiple murders and a name that Anna recognizes. Someone from her past. What an interesting angle!

I was immersed in the first half of the book. The suspense and the yacht mystery were both
Susanne  Strong
3.5 Stars* (rounded down).

Not your average thriller!

A woman obsessed with podcasts starts investigating a man she once knew who is the star of one. Talk about an intriguing premise!

Anna McDonald is a married woman who believes she is happily married when her husband takes off with her best friend and her children. With her life left in tatters, she starts investigating a man whose family is featured on a podcast. All were murdered at sea, on the Dana, a sunken yacht in the Bay of Biscay. The
May 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: buddy-read, netgalley
This was a delightfully surprising read for me. I know what a talented author Denise Mina is, so I suppose I shouldn’t have been shocked at just how much I enjoyed her latest work.
This book had my full, undivided attention from cover to cover!

Anna finds her inner peace reading. (Sound familiar?)
Her other guilty pleasure is listening to true crime podcasts. Her latest favorite is called Death and the Dana. A yacht sinks, drowning a man named Leon along with his 2 children.
Wait a minute.
Louise Wilson
May 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was sucked into this story from the beginning. This is just the second book that I have read by the author but I will definitely read more. The book is set partly in Glasgow. Anna McDonald's husband has just left her for her best friend and he has taken their children with him. Anna loves to listen to true crime podcasts. Apart from Glasgow, we also travel to Fort William and lle de Re in France. Anna's life is complex, I don't want to say more than that as it would contain spoilers. This is a ...more
May 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have, so far, read two books by Denise Mina, and a short story, all of which I have loved; which leads me to the conclusion that I really need to go back and rediscover her earlier work and, in particular, her crime series. Both of the novels I have read, “The Long Drop,” and this, “Conviction,” have been stand alone books and both have been excellent, in different ways.

Anna McDonald is having marriage counselling, but it does not seem to be working, as when we meet her, husband Hamish heads
May 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What sets Denise Mina apart from the rest of the crime crowd is her portrayal of ordinary, humdrum lives which go on to be affected by a single life-altering catalyst. From then on life spirals drastically out of control and that is exactly what happens here with Anna and her family. The scenario manages to remain the right side of credible and, in my opinion, the reason Mina's books are so exceptional is that they feature a potent mix of interesting characters, solid plot, relaxed writing with ...more
Liz Barnsley
Apr 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Conviction was absolutely riveting from the very first page – a vibrant, edgy and brilliantly done character voice, this is a layered tale that sucks you into it’s mysteries then throws you out the other side feeling like you’ve been through the wringer right beside Anna.

Using a podcast as an anchor to mystery storytelling is popular at the moment but I’ve not seen it used in quite this way before – those portions of the plot are fascinatingly immersive (yes I know) a sunken ship haunted by a gh
Apr 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a wonderfully sprawling tale with a twisted plot, most of which would easily feature in today's news headlines. The story opens with Anna McDonald, wife of a well-heeled Glasgow lawyer and mother of two young daughters, listening to a true crime podcast titled "Death and the Dana" as she prepares her daughters'clothes and packed lunches for school.
Suddenly, a name from her past leaps out from the podcast.
A man she knew briefly a decade ago is dead, killed in an explosion aboard a yacht
Jessica Woodbury
Jun 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
I recommend Denise Mina a lot to people who are looking for a strong, reliable crime author to add to their reading. CONVICTION is a strong standalone with a tough female protagonist and a super twisty European spree of a plot, I think it's a good place to start if you haven't read her before.

At the beginning of the book, it looks to the reader like Anna is at a low point. All she wants to do is listen to this true crime podcast and then she gets some very bad news. You'd think Anna is at a low
Kasa Cotugno
Jun 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A great standalone from one of my favorite crime writers who brings so much wisdom, humor, and here, an exceptionally unusually thrilling plotline. Read in two sittings, it was THAT good.
Oliver Clarke
Mar 31, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
'Conviction' has pretty much everything you might want from a thriller. It’s gripping, funny and has an enjoyable mystery running through it. It's also wildly different in tone and subject matter to the last Denise Mina book I read, ‘The Long Drop’, which speaks to her talents as a writer. I didn’t like it quite as much as ‘The Long Drop’, but then that was one of my favourite reads of 2018, so the bar was set high. That book was serious and fairly bleak, ‘Conviction’ is a much lighter read.
It o
May 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arcs
A true crime podcast that intersects with real life? Sign me right up!!!!! This is the first book I’ve read by Denise Mina and I was hooked right away - as Anna McDonald’s personal life unravels, she finds herself on a road trip with an unlikely companion and they are listening to a podcast about the mysterious sinking of the Dana and Anna begins to try to solve the mystery on her own.

Told in perspectives that alternate between the podcast and Anna, my attention was held the entire book and I f
Craig Sisterson
Apr 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scottish
Anyone who has read any of Denise Mina's books over the past 20 years knows that she's a highly talented crime writer. Her resume is packed with awards and accolades, and whether it's one her one of her three acclaimed series (Garnethill, Paddy Meehan, Alex Morrow) or inventive standalones like SANCTUM and THE LONG DROP, there's evidence aplenty that Mina is crime writing royalty.

After celebrating the twentieth anniversary last year of her striking debut GARNETHILL, Mina now underlines her vers
Kate Vane
May 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Denise Mina is always willing to take her writing in fresh and interesting directions. Her last novel, The Long Drop, was based on a real-life murder trial in 1950s Glasgow. Now, in Conviction, she has written a novel which zings with contemporary concerns.

Anna McDonald is living in Glasgow, married to a lawyer, with two young daughters. They’re affluent and comfortable, if not exactly happy. Anna likes to escape the conflict in her marriage by getting up early, having some alone time, indulging
Elaine Tomasso
May 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I would like to thank Netgalley and Random House UK, Vintage Publishing for an advance copy of Conviction, a stand alone set in various parts of Europe.

Anna McDonald is listening to a true crime podcast, Death and The Dana, when she realises she knows one of the dead, Leon Parker. She is intrigued and continues to listen but it is only when her husband leaves her for her best friend, Estelle, and takes her daughters that she decides, on a whim to investigate further, taking Estelle’s husband, Fi
May 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved Denise Mina's The Long Drop (2017) - Winner of the Gordon Burn Prize 2017, and the McIlvanney Prize for Scottish Crime Novel of the Year 2017 - and so was keen to read more of Denise's work.

Unlike The Long Drop, Conviction (2019) is wholly fictional however it is also a very modern story which embraces podcasts, the #metoo movement, rape, wealth and privilege, identity, social media, and murder. Quite a lot of murder.

Although elements of the plot do not bare too much scrutiny, Conviction
Sid Nuncius
I loved Conviction; it is gripping, insightful and witty. It is also an enjoyable change of direction from the very good but unremittingly grim The Long Drop.

One of the book’s great features is the narrative voice of Anna, a damaged, often angry woman whose marriage to a wealthy lawyer in Glasgow implodes, revealing that she is not who everyone thinks she is and that her old identity has become public. Details of the death of someone she knew and liked appear on a podcast and there begins a thr
The eternal companions of all clever women are mistrust and scorn."

Anna McDonald has two daughters with her lawyer partner, Hamish. On the morning her life implodes, she's listening to a true crime podcast and is quite surprised that she knows one of the people featured in the story. "A sunken yacht, a murdered family on board, a secret still unsolved..."
When Hamish walks out of their home with Anna's best friend and her two daughters, Anna briefly considers suicide. A knock on the door rouses h
Dimitris Passas
Mar 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the first book by the Scottish author, Denise Mina, that I've read and I can say that she deserves the rave reviews written for her previous novels. ''Conviction'' is a tight mystery/thriller, introducing a perfectly drawn main character, Anna McDonald. Anna is a married woman with two little girls and enjoys her everyday routine but already from the first -very well written- pages the audience learns that she has a truly troubled past which she is determined to hide from her family and ...more
Shelleyrae at Book'd Out
Sharp, fast-paced, witty and vivid, Conviction by Denise Mina is a lively and engrossing thriller.

Reeling from learning that an old friend, Leon Parker, is assumed to be responsible for the murder-suicide of his two children during her morning coffee on her favourite true crime podcast, Anna McDonald is further devastated when her husband announces over breakfast that he is leaving her, for her pregnant best friend. As she lies on the floor in her hallway considering ending it all, Anna is inter
Apr 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thrillers
What a bizarre whirlwind of a book. I loved it. The voice is what I would call frenetic--it felt like a frenetic reading experience. I devoured it in two marathon, late night reading sessions, drawn in by MC Anna's darkly comedic tone, and the pull of the mystery. I adore a good "the ridiculous rich" thriller, which is what this plays on: on the day her marriage falls apart, Anna starts listening to a new true crime podcast about a yacht sunk off the coast of France and the rich family who drown ...more
Melissa Dee
Jun 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Conviction is a book that sends you happily hunting down an author’s backlist. Mina writes a smart and funny heroine. Anna’s adventures started long before this book opens, and as the layers of her past are peeled back, I got more and more invested in figuring out what happened then and how the past has created her present. Finn is a sidekick with his own complications. Anna and Finn head out on a road trip to lay Anna’s past to rest, and the further they get form their formerly happy suburban l ...more
May 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime
Well, this was a fun one! Like just about everyone, I love a true crime podcast, so I was excited to read a novel that centered on one.

The plot is incredibly twisty (to the point that when I tried to explain it to a friend, she reached a point where she just said 'REALLY?' and gave up; for some reason as I was reading it I didn't have the same reaction, and was happy to believe it all). Denise Mina is great at suspense, and the protagonist was a joy to read – so scathing and bitter, but in a to
Bebe (Sarah) Brechner
Readers will not be able to put this new type of thriller down! Main character Anna McDonald's life explodes in a seemingly mundane way (unfaithful husband), but unexpectedly, things rev up to the highest gear as her previously hidden and traumatic past life catches up with her, and she determines to face her greatest fears. This is a smart and fearless take on the thriller genre, with podcasting and social media playing out on the usual field of killers, paranoia, and bad decisions.
Apr 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A MUST-READ for crime fiction fans, and for those who already love the magnificent Denise Mina: Get Ready! Denise Mina is back in beyond-excellent form. If you loved her brilliant Garnet Hill trilogy and her Paddy Meehan series, just take a day off from work already to read this when it comes out in June (I was fortunate enough to receive a galley). CONVICTION is the excellently creepy story of a well-to-do young trophy wife / mother and her obsession with true crime podcasts that one morning ta ...more
Lel Budge
May 16, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: pigeonhole
This is a wonderful twisty tale about Anna McDonald, she had a past life that she’s kept secret from her lawyer husband. One morning, listening to a podcast she hears a name she knows...Leon!

He has died on a yacht, purportedly by explosives planted by chef, Amila.

Her life then takes a miserable turn as her husband Hamish leaves her, taking her two daughters with him.

To keep herself occupied she decides to look into Leon’s death, Alison with the troubled Fin….

The story travels to Italy and France
Sharon LeBond
Good writing, wild plot.
An obsession with a true crime podcast upends the life of a wealthy housewife and brings her face-to-face with the secrets of her past. I loved the premise and Denise Mina is a great writer. The plot just wasn't to my taste as the MC races around Europe to get to the bottom of an unsolved crime. I was expecting a dark, psychological thriller, but this is much more jaunty, a little far-fetched. There are mistaken identities, an assassin on a train, and a wealthy heiress w
Hannelore Cheney
Another corker by Denise Mina, loved it! Excellent mystery, great characterisation, a must read. Highly recommended, 5+ stars.
Jun 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One Of The Best Final Lines I've Ever Read! The book itself started a bit slow, but by around 15-20% in or so builds to where you just want to finish the book in one sitting. Which is nearly what I did, having started the day at 12% into the book, fought through continually trying to fall asleep from sheer exhaustion, and now sitting here writing this review having finished the tale a couple hours later. Great tale with many lies buried within lies buried within lies, and does a good job of hold ...more
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Mystery/Thriller ...: * Group Read - Conviction general discussion No Spoilers 7 10 Jul 14, 2019 04:12PM  
Denise Mina was born in Glasgow in 1966. Because of her father's job as an Engineer, the family followed the north sea oil boom of the seventies around Europe
She left school at sixteen and did a number of poorly paid jobs, including working in a meat factory, as a bar maid, kitchen porter and cook.
Eventually she settled in auxiliary nursing for geriatric and terminal care patients.
At twenty one sh
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“Lovely thing about Adam, and why I loved him, was that he was kind to me when it mattered and he had seen a lot too. It’s hard to be among vanilla bastards all the time. Normal people can get genuinely upset about a bad haircut, cross words, sick cats. It’s hard not to roll your eyes and say the wrong thing.” 0 likes
“I often said the wrong thing–wake up, shut up, grow up. These are the wrong things to say when people are sad about some minor cruelty or sentimental incident.” 0 likes
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