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Pearl Ruled THE YARD by Alex Grecian p67 This is its star I started getting annoyed when, at the beginning of chapter 2, Colonel Sir Edward Bradford, Commissioner of Scotland Yard, calls the sleuth into his mahogany lined office and proceeds to make no sense at all for several pages The sleuth is confused, too, and there appears to be no reason we the readers should give the ass of a rat about this little tete a tete.Then came the who cares italicized narration of the bald man, who killed the victim We re told so in the first 20pp, I am not spoilering The other thing I m not is caring.Then on p67, a clue is run down by the sleuth and the forensic scientist, but the forensic scientist says it s not really a clue, they re just being thorough, and I frankly became so disgusted with this amateurish, ramshackle mess of typing that I was physically unable to force my eyes to focus on the first sentence of chapter 10.There are point of view issues There are credibility gaps There is a numbing expectedness in each character s responses and reactions Well, as you can tell by my one star rating, I am not impressed and I am not happy to have spent this time in this fashion I don t recommend it This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. I have just finished reading a book called The Yard by Alex Grecian It s set in London in 1889 and is a novel about the early days of the Murder Squad Read it only for the hilarity of the wrongness of half his descriptions and his totally tin ear for period dialogue People use such phrases as no worries , I m right on it , he s heading up the investigation and where was the beat cop and refer to a landlord in a pub as a barkeep In the first 125 pages alone we have a small boy in Wales earning two cents a day, brownstone houses, a park in Trafalgar Square this misconception is repeated later , and a housekeeper called by her master and mistress Elizabeth who makes a cup of tea unasked for two policemen who called in the middle of the night Moreover, we have a doctor s wife knowing the first name of the chimney sweep and referring to him by it The housekeeper appears to their only servant, and part of their living area is in the basement although the doctor has a successful practice.We have a tailor considering himself old fashioned for not having electricity in his home in 1889 There is a walk in closet on p 124, which took me totally aback This walk in closet is in a small house belonging to a policeman and his wife The wife, Claire, is presented as an upper class girl who has made something of a misalliance with the policeman, Walter, but her parents have bought them this small house, in which they maintain separate bedrooms, so as not to shock the housekeeper , who is in fact a daily woman Claire uses the word bloody Characters consistently invite others to call them by their first name, even when they have not met previously and are of totally different social status.I was so distressed by all this wrongness that I actually wrote to the author to beg him to get any future novels read by somebody who knew about these things because some of the characters aren t bad and I believe it might even be being made into a TV series and got a very friendly reply from him, acknowledging that they were indeed clangers but saying as an American from the mid West he hadn t actually expected his book would be so widely read What on earth are his editors coming to that they let this kind of thing slip by It s Penguin for goodness sake they can t be short of expertise And apparently the UK edition has left a lot of these clangers in As I said read it only for a spot the clanger game Julian Fellowes scripts for Downton Abbey are wonderful in comparison.Add in the clunking and clumsy plot I can t understand how this book ever got published, except that the writing apart from the above mentioned lousy research is competent and the characters and setting and concept are promising, which is why I picked it up in the first place I finished it in a teeth gritted I ve paid for this so I ll read it kind of way. When Jeffrey Deaver quoted that this book will keep you riveted from page one he wasn t wrong I loved the excellent storyline and enjoyed this fun read from start to finish.Set in London in 1889, following the Ripper s reign of terror, the Scotland Yard form a Murder Squad to deal with the hundreds of deaths ongoing in the city Based at The Yard the first case for the newly appointed Inspector Walter Day is the grisly murder of one of their own, Detective Little With the help of The Yard s first ever forensic pathologist Dr Bernard Kingsley, they are determined to catch the killer beforemurders occur.The characters were just brilliant, all were different and unique and since the author had described them so well I could visualise each and everyone perfectly I particularly liked Dr Kingsley and just knew he was going to be an interesting character when he exclaimed ah ha early on It was fascinating to read how early forensics started and how fastidious Dr Kingsley was at noticing the smallest of details to help connect the killer to the crime Typically British, the London accents were spot one and I truly felt I was in Victorian London with all the sights, smells and conditions As this is my favourite time in fiction, I felt the author Alex Grecian has captured an atmospheric period of history to perfection There s a couple of individual storylines going on throughout the book and each one was captivating to follow The bald man chapters were exceptionally good and quite scary too at times I felt for little Fenn and loved how the whole story came together at the end seamlessly With the right amount of mortuary and murder gore this crime thriller is a fantastic read, well written with an ingenious plot that I wouldn t hesitate to recommend and I have every intention now of reading the further books in this series 5 starsMany thanks to friend and fellow reviewer Rachel Hall for the generous copy. This one was rather disappointment I liked the premise of the novel to describe the inception of Scotland Yard as a modern police, show the birth of forensic science, paint the vast background, both social and economic of Victorian London I counted on stylish and atmospheric crime noir but what I finally got in The Yard not entirely met my expectations.I think some protagonists may have a potential to become an interesting characters though it s unlikely I would follow their further cases Newly arrived to London, untouched by routine thinking inspector Walter Day, constable Nevil Hammersmith, leading his private crusade against the man who let the child die in the chimney hiring kids as helpers for chimney sweepers was then on the agenda and Dr Bernard Kingsley with his fresh and unconventional approach to the novelty on the field of medicine are likely to push the Murder Squad on new tracks and straight into the twentieth century.This novel of Alex Grecian is the first installment in the cycle The author did some research for sure but apparently not very thorough and what he did here came up not too convincingly His London, maybe because the author is American, feels like every other city some reviewers indicated on many mistakes, both factual and topographical I had no such knowledge about the epoch to find every awkwardness but surely some seedy alleys and foggy weather or mentioning Jack the Ripper won t do to create a proper Victorian aura.Some actions felt strangely disjointed or far fetched and particular threads dropped without further clarification Almost from the start we know who the bad guy is and in that case I expected either some gripping, mind fucking game with the police or attempt to enter in murderer s mind to reveal his twisted personality and things that pushed him to become the person he was And preferably both Well, probably I m too spoiled by other readings.Perhaps if Grecian had set his novel onfamiliar ground, if he had stuck to facts and background known to him this one would have feltauthentic And so he gave rather weak performance here, neither convincing nor riveting reading Content of mystery in mystery close to nought, sound knowledge of the historic realities likewise and proverbial English sense of humour and irony, clever dialogues or other spices nowhere to be seen. Victorian London Is A Cesspool Of Crime, And Scotland Yard Has Only Twelve Detectives Known As The Murder Squad To Investigate Countless Murders Every Month Created After The Metropolitan Police S Spectacular Failure To Capture Jack The Ripper, The Murder Squad Suffers Rampant Public Contempt They Have Failed Their Citizens But No One Can Anticipate The Brutal Murder Of One Of Their Own One Of The TwelveWhen Walter Day, The Squad S Newest Hire, Is Assigned The Case Of The Murdered Detective, He Finds A Strange Ally In The Yard S First Forensic Pathologist, Dr Bernard Kingsley Together They Track The Killer, Who Clearly Is Not Finished With The Murder Squad But Why Filled With Fascinating Period Detail, And Real Historical Figures, This Spectacular Debut In A New Series Showcases The Depravity Of Late Victorian London, The Advent Of Criminology, And Introduces A Stunning New Cast Of Characters Sure To Appeal To Fans Of The Sherlockian And The Alienist The Yard is a cozy murder mystery that takes place in London in the late 1800s Jack the Ripper has scared the heck out of everybody First, because of the obvious reason that he kept killing people and second, because the police never caught him Now, nobody thinks very much about Scotland Yard s Murder Squad, but the new inspector Walter Day is determined to prove his worth.Especially when he s tapped to lead the investigation into the death of a fellow police inspectorYou can see what s been done The question is why has it been done It s inhuman I m afraid it s all too humanpg 3The development of criminology is still underway with modern advances like fingerprinting making an appearance in the field It doesn t help that each inspector has a heavier case load than he could possibly manageLast month, ninety six corpses were pulled from the Thames,than half of them with their throats slit It hadn t been an unusual body count for a city where the annual number of arrests topped sixty thousandpg 19A colorful cast of characters rounds out this story Colonel Sir Edward Bradford has recently taken over as police commissioner He won t accept the murderer of one of his inspectors.Dr Bernard Kingsley inspects bodies for evidence about the crimes committed to them It is an imperfect and smelly art.Constable Nevil Hammersmith never seems to have time to sleep He s the son of a Welsh coal miner who s come to London to try to make something of himself.Between the three of them, can they catch the killer before he strikes again I enjoyed this book, but felt that the ending went on a bit too long I also found myself looking for the psychological tension that you would find in a Tana French book, but The Yard isn t that kind of mystery.This is a snuggle up with a hot cup of cocoa or glass of wine book rather than a stay up until midnight because you have to know what happens before this chapter ends read Which is fine Recommended for the snuggle variety of reader. Find yourself transported to the Victorian streets of London post Jack the Ripper days.The author successfully places you in the atmosphere of that time, the streets of London paved with gaslights and Hansom cabs as modes of transport, in the dark bleak workhouses and the most importantly the Yard, great Scotland yard, located at Whitehall place and their morgue in the beginnings of forensic pathology during an era when C.S.I and DNA detection was virtually unheard of.The Victorian London era made the story thatinteresting and intriguing reading , it was engrossing and dark but also quite poignant at times there was some really good moments of human kindness in here Some characters grow on you and you get to like the Yard s first forensic pathologist, Dr Bernard Kingsley was a really interesting character you learn of his past and his reason he took occupation in the Yard and how he made the crimes investigation successful and a crime solving art form You feel the atmosphere of the mortuary and smell the stench of the dead.To the murders, yes policemen upholders of the law are found dead in very dreadful and ugly circumstances and a boy also is missing.The citizens of London had just started to relax after a long break from Jack the Ripper murdering and due the emergence of the dead policemen a decision was made to put together a murder squad in the yard with a group of detectives with the sole purpose to detect and solve murders.The search is on and Hammersmith and Walter Day are two gentlemen detective inspectors worthy of solving these cases they are characters that you ll find that you will want to hearof I do hope that we seemfrom this era with the murder squad in the Yard and Dr Kingsley in the mortuary I sense from reading that this is not going to be the last story that comes out from The Yard Review also A new series, set in the late 1800 s post Jack the Ripper London, actually a year past A murder is discovered in the opening scenes we re swiftly introduced to the murder squad who were set up within Scotland Yard as a direct outcome of the Ripper crimes Wont give much away as it s a teccie crime series, even though the murderer is given away fairly early on makes appearances in Italics getting bolder as the story evolves but will tell that it s good on humour, characters have depth and fleshed out backstories which grow throughout the investigation s there s plenny of historical fiction essence to make you feel a part of London, the grime the attitudes morality of the period No BBC a la Ripper Street changing the morality compass here The ending s were well thought out too added a good deal of suspense, bringing multiple threads to varying conclusions, maybe a little too neatly in places but for me that was in keeping with the read.Pretty good for a debut, an enjoyable romp I for one don t mind an early reveal as it s always good to see how it s going to pan out 4 stars will be readingof the Murder Squad.Recommended to all who enjoy a mystery set in historical fiction setting especially a late Victorian Ripper street era. A extraordinary book that I found fascinating especially as it incorporated a number of things in the telling of this story that I usually do not enjoy reading for example being in the mind of a murder I really loved reading The Yard The main characters were fantastically well described, very sympathetic People, for the most part, I would enjoy knowing I also found the way that the author had done Victorian London was done extremely well I could smell the stink and see the filth, but somehow as the characters could endure and go on with hope, I did not find this depressing.I am planning on going on with the rest of the series I hope that there will beinformation about the beginning of Scottland Yard I also am hoping to readabout two of the minor characters as I found them quite inspiring and enjoyed the parts of this book that they were in very much.I recommend this book highly to all who enjoy Historical Mysteries Fiction Those who especially enjoy reading about Victorian London. 3.5 starsI liked The Yard I really wanted to love it, but a couple of things stood in my way I really felt like it was a modern forensic mystery being forced into a Victorian corset and details were frequently straining to escape A little research has helped me like itThis really was the time period during which fingerprinting became a thing that police forces did and autopsies were practiced I found the resistance of some members of the police force to these procedures to be believable perhapsbelievable than the easy acceptance of them by the main characters.I probably would have beenenamoured by this novel had I not been reading some of Ben Aaronovitch s excellent Rivers of London series recently Aaronovitch, as a Londoner, has such an advantage with the dialog his sounds authentic, he uses slang expertly, his dialog sounds natural This is a difficult task for a North American author to duplicate Grecian s characters inevitably end up sounding somewhat American A couple of references to the modern myth of families needing closure especially rubbed me the wrong way, particularly since I really don t believe that there s any such thing Having lost family traumatically in a car accident, I can tell you that there is never closure, just the careful construction of a new reality.I didn t get a strong sense of place in The Yard either London is such a wonderful, rich location for a story Rivers of London or the Slough House series by Mick Herron make the city an integral part of the action Still, this was an interesting first book in the series and I wouldn t be surprised if I read at least the second book at some point to see if the author finds his footing There are a number of interesting people who seem poised to become regulars and the possibilities are intriguing If you enjoyed this book, I would also recommend Dust and Shadow An Account of the Ripper Killings by Dr John H Watson by Lyndsay Faye, a book which I feel captures the flavor of the period a little better.