Saturday 17 May 2014

Review - The Edinburgh Dead by Brian Ruckley

The Edinburgh DeadThe Edinburgh Dead by Brian Ruckley
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - 3 days

Publisher - Orbit

Pages - 369

Blurb from Goodreads

Edinburgh: 1828
In the starkly-lit operating theaters of the city, grisly experiments are being carried out on corpses in the name of medical science. But elsewhere, there are those experimenting with more sinister forces.
Amongst the crowded, sprawling tenements of the labyrinthine Old Town, a body is found, its neck torn to pieces. Charged with investigating the murder is Adam Quire, Officer of the newly- formed Edinburgh Police. The trail will lead him into the deepest reaches of the city's criminal underclass, and to the highest echelons of the filthy rich.
Soon Quire will discover that a darkness is crawling through this city of enlightenment - and no one is safe from its corruption.
The Edinburgh Dead" is a powerful fusion of gothic horror, history, and the fantastical.

My review

The opening of the story grabs you, experiments and bodies being cut open in a theater in front of the public. Manipulation of the bodies to make them move after death. morbid fascination. Flip on to 1828, there has been a grisly murder and officer Adam Quire is on the case. The mans throat has been torn out and his identity is unknown. When Adam starts digging deeper he uncovers things that don't make sense, can't be possible, supernatural elements and someone with money is not happy with Quire. The investigation will cost him everything if he doesn't relent but for Quire, justice and truth must be followed at all costs, even his life.

Oh the beginning of this story was so good, bodies, experiments and then a murder. However is soon slowed its pace, the word zombie is thrown about however I disagree in that Frankenstein, in my eyes, was not what I would call a zombie. There is occult, spells, black magic, reanimation, murder and downright freakishness within the tale. We also get a glimpse of the war Quire was in which gives an understanding of his character and why he pursues the course of justice, to any cost.

The insight into the police and how they treat each other was quite something although I would need to read some books to see if it is an accurate representation however it made for good reading. The book also has mention of some old famous Edinburgh historical characters which was good and well incorporated into the story.

Despite being quite slow going at parts, other parts really gripped the reader and I felt whilst it wasn't amazing, it was a pretty good tale. 3/5 for me this time and I would read this author again.

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  1. Sinister experiments, cutting up bodies, the occult, etc can be so much fun! Amazing how this stuff taps into a certain place in our minds.

    Too bad the book did not keep up its pace.

  2. This sounds macabre with the reanimation bit. It sounds good.

  3. This book sounds fascinating! I am sorry to hear it is slow in places, but it sounds like it's still worth reading from what you've said.

    Great review. Thank you for bringing this book to my attention.


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