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Out in the Cold

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  40 ratings  ·  27 reviews

When a superior officer's decision not to respond to a routine disturbance has fatal consequences, Colyear finds himself sent away from Glasgow to work in a remote Highlands town.

Despite not wanting to be there, a feeling shared by his commander, Colyear soon settles int
Paperback, 352 pages
Expected publication: March 18th 2021 by Allison & Busby
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Average rating 3.78  · 
Rating details
 ·  40 ratings  ·  27 reviews

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Oct 27, 2020 rated it liked it
2-3 stars rounded up.

Sergeant Don Colyear is relocated to Stratharder, north of Oban, following problems in Glasgow. Alongside Constable Rowan Forbes, he investigates a variety of crimes from the minor to the death of a worker on a local estate which appears to be occult based as well as the disappearance of young girls.

There are things I like about this book, Colyear is an interesting and intuitive character and I like the relationship with Rowan who is very likeable. There are some lively ex
Louise Wilson
Nov 20, 2020 rated it liked it
After an incident makes it impossible to stay in Glasgow, Sergeant Don Colyear is sent to work in the remote Highland town. His new Inspector wants him gone and the locals wonder why he's even there. But Don makes a go of things, striking up a good working relationship with rookie officer, Rowan Forbes.

This is a bit of a slow burner. We are quite a bit into the book before the main plotline starts, up to then, it's mostly character building. Don and Rowan form a great bond. There's also some fl
For Don Colyear the terms 'gut feeling' and 'gut instinct' take a very literal form as in whenever he is hit with one, it results in acute stomach cramps. This unique intuitive sense of his has helped him out in the past as well as got him in trouble. One such scenario has resulted in him being 'transferred' to a small Highland town of Stratharder as a Sergeant. It is a small town with a small community where everyone knows everyone else and seems to have a next to nil crime rate. But a chance h ...more
The Coycaterpillar Reads
Dec 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I have been so incredibly lucky as of late in my crime novels, but Out in the Cold surpassed all my expectations. It has an original plot, intriguing main characters and a writing style that is so sharp that it threatens to slit your throat. If I thought that it couldn’t get better than that opening chapter, I’d be sorely wrong. Have you ever found yourself in an untenable situation at work? Well Detective Sargent Colyear has a master’s in it. A situation that wasn’t his doing but takes the rap ...more
Oct 22, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: net-galley
"Cough, cough..gasp!"
I thought I'd love this tale. First off, it's in Scotland. Only my favorite book location, ever! leaves least favorite Scottish destination. No offense, but that's just me. Once this went a wee bit North, I thought it would get better.
Nope. I didn't like anyone. Even the m.c.'s had no backbone. Maybe later in the tale! Too late!
I'm sorry, but a book needs something or someone! A hook. A barbed hook!
Like secretly trout fishing off the dock at night.
Nov 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
Police Sergeant Don Colyear has a gift of intuition but sometimes it doesn't work in his favour. He was working in Glasgow but after a incident he is forced to work in a remote Highlands town. His new Inspector wants him gone and the locals can't understand why he is working in their town. Don himself doesn't want to be working in this town but decides to make a go of it. He starts to build a working relationship with rookie officer Rowan Forbes. As Don starts to work he feels something is off a ...more
Nov 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Out in the Cold is the first instalment in the Sergeant Donald "Don” Colyear police procedural series, set in the fictional Scottish town of Stratharder, just north of the coastal fishing town of Oban in the Highlands. Thirty-three-year-old Sergeant Colyear has been promoted and transferred from his now untenable post in Glasgow to the remote town of Stratharder where the crime rate seems, at first glance, to be vastly lower. On his arrival at the station on his first day, he is shown around tow ...more
Liz Barnsley
Dec 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
was rather a fan of this novel- I do like a good Scottish setting, that plus the small town vibe and an interesting, relatable and darkly humorous main protagonist made this an excellent read.

There’s also of course the intuitive undertone to it that you would think might offer our Sergeant Colyyear an edge but somehow gets him into as much trouble as it gets him out of..

Therein lies one of the main hooks in this read for me – it is a crime novel plus, offering a decently unpredictable mystery,
Feb 02, 2021 rated it really liked it
Time taken to read - in and out over 3 days

Pages - 352

Publisher - Allison & Busby

Source - Review copy

Blurb from Goodreads


When a superior officer's decision not to respond to a routine disturbance has fatal consequences, Colyear finds himself sent away from Glasgow to work in a remote Highlands town.

Despite not wanting to be there, a feeling shared by his commander, Colyear soon settles into
Jacob Collins
Jan 31, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I loved Out in the Cold by Stuart Johnstone. If you’re a fan of Paul Finch’s DS Mark Heckenburg series, then you need to give this a go. It’s pacy, addictive and really atmospheric.

When Don Colyear arrives in a remote Highlands town, after being transferred there from Glasgow, he isn’t exactly given a warm reception. In fact, his new boss tells him from the start that he didn’t want him there, and his placement in the town does seem strange as well. The police station is due to close within wee
Syeda Sumayya Tariq
Police sergeant Don Colyear has a very powerful and strong sense of intuition that's helped him solve cases beyond anyone's imagination. Now posted to a town where even petty crimes are rare, he's quick to notice that things are not as they seem and something's off about this whole town.

I liked the plot of this one, and the light tone in which the whole story is told is very enjoyable. And it's gripping from the get-go, the first chapter made me want to read it double time. It's a slow burn, and
Oct 17, 2020 rated it liked it
I received this book via NetGalley and Allyson & Busby. The plot of the book was good but I found it extremely difficult to get into this book. I like the main character Donald and his associate Rowan but the rest of the characters weren’t developed enough for me to really care about them.

It was a slow building story and there was too many pages left on describing a drive in a van instead of building the suspense. Nothing seems to blend together with the main character going from one place to a
Elaine Tomasso
Nov 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I would like to thank Netgalley and Allison & Busby for an advance copy of Out in the Cold, a police procedural featuring Sergeant Don Colyear, set in the fictional Scottish town of Stratharder.

After a spot of trouble in Glasgow Don Colyear is promoted and transferred to Stratharder, a remote highland town. It’s not long before Don realises that something isn’t quite right underneath the quiet façade but with a spate of vandalism, a possible murder and the disappearance of a string of teenagers
Nov 10, 2020 rated it liked it
Not a bad storyline and did enjoy the characters but the writing style of going back to the past then back to the present got rather confusing at times.
Martha Brindley
Nov 06, 2020 rated it liked it
I liked the Scottish setting of this book and it had an interesting plot. Although it was a bit slow and jumped between the past and the present, which made it difficult for me to get into. I liked the main character of Don and his colleague Rowan. This has the promise of a good series, if there is a follow up, with just a bit more clarity with plot construction and editing. Overall, I enjoyed the read. Thanks to Net Galley for my ARC.
Nov 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
Well when I registered this on Good reads, the reviews were not great . But I never let anything like that put me off so I started to read. At first, the story was confusing, with flashbacks, life at work and Don finding himself in a compromising position, but as the book progressed, I liked the way the story developed. The descriptions of the town /village involved were realistic and I could understand Don's feeling that something was not right.
For me, one criticism would be the story of Carly
Dec 19, 2020 rated it liked it
After a nasty incident in Glasgow Don Colyear is sent to Stratharder, North of Oban. He is not exactly made welcome. The local Inspector wants him gone as soon as possible, the locals wonder why he's there. The only bright spot is the eager young constable, Rowan. At first it seems a very quiet posting, dealing with small vandalism cases. When a local man is found dead in odd circumstances things get a bit more complicated! The story switches from present to past & back again, which makes it som ...more
Nov 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This was like a warm hug of a book. The scenery descriptions were wonderful, I really wanted to go there and holiday - if it wasn't for the crime wave.

The relationship between Don and Rowena was really good and real.

What I did struggle with was the time jumps and not really understanding the reasons for the move until nearly the middle of the book so I struggled a bit with who was who and how they impacted onto the story.

It definitely looked like it was setting up for a sequel which I will de
Kathleen Gray
Nov 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
Don Colyear figured policing would be quieter in Stratharder than in Glasgow. He didn't figure on the fact that there's a subtle crime wave going on - one that's been around for a long time. A murder brings out a whole set of secrets (no spoilers from me). His new partner- Rowan- is a rookie. That makes for some tough times but also for some smart dialogue. Don's backstory spools out slowly in this novel that moves back and forth in time (be prepared to occasionally be a bit confused). The chara ...more
Steph  Sheppard
Stuart Johnstone is a new author to me but #OutInTheCold has made sure that I will be looking out for more of his work and as any self respecting bookworm knows it's always a pleasure to find a new author to add to the list. I've got my fingers crossed that this is the start of what is going to be a decent SPP (Scottish Police Procedural).

In this we meet Sargent Don Colyear who is freshly promoted and shipped out to Stratharder up in the Highlands, a place that he assumes is going to be a sleepy
Salome G
Nov 03, 2020 rated it liked it
This book is the slowest of slow burns. I was starting chapter 4 when I finally had to check and make sure I was reading the right book. I was expecting a cracking Scottish-set mystery/thriller and that far into the book, all that had been established was that it was indeed taking place in Scotland. The central mystery turned out to be basically a big whatever and I didn’t really like any of the characters, including the protagonist. But still, there was something about it that I found charming. ...more
Nov 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A well written police procedural with some good character building and background description. The backstory of the protagonist is introduced seamlessly in different parts of the story. Due to the lack of editing the sudden change in scenarios is confusing which I hope is rectified in the final version. The main plot starts quite late but picks up fast. Looking forward to the next one.
Sally Boocock
Jan 05, 2021 rated it liked it
As crime novels go this one was pretty mediocre. I loved the two main protagonists Don and Rowan and feel this was more a character building book ready for the next one. I did find the flashbacks a little confusing but overall it was a good read and I look forward to reading more by this author.
Emily Maynard
Jan 16, 2021 rated it liked it
Thanks to NetGalley for letting me have a copy of this novel to read for free, unfortunately I was not able to finish it before the license expired. I wound up at about 70%. It was a decent story but very slow moving and I had a hard time connecting with it.
Feb 02, 2021 rated it really liked it
A slow burn to start, but really good! After I got invested in the story I couldn’t put it down. I particularly liked the characters and the setting. As others have remarked though, the pacing was somewhat off and confusing at times. Still, a mystery I thoroughly enjoyed!
GMT Books
More please! A great read indeed
Nov 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Such a good book!

I was hooked after the first chapter and read it in a few days. A great story, clues subtly dropped along the way without being cliche, and a focus on detective work (with a twist). I also liked that it was a crime novel without over-the-top graphic violence and gore. Hard to believe this is a debut book. Can’t wait for the next one!
Beth Hubbard
rated it liked it
Jan 10, 2021
K Saju
rated it really liked it
Dec 13, 2020
Nessa Dundon
rated it liked it
Jan 24, 2021
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