Customer Reviews for

The Dead Hour (Paddy Meehan Series #2)

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  • Posted July 1, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    The Dead Hour

    Paddy Meehan, 21 years old and on night shift [called the “calls car” shift, and encompassing the Dead Hour, 3 AM], at the Scottish Daily News in Glasgow, makes one of her usual nightly calls, following the police radio in the car and going to the address to which the police have been summoned. This time it appears to be a domestic disturbance, the victim a young, elegant-looking blond woman who, though obviously bloodied, refuses any assistance and, when Paddy catches her eye, seems to slightly shake her head. The police leave, aided by the passing of money into their hands from the man who had answered the door, a scenario replayed moments later when Paddy, herself now the recipient of a 50 pound note, tries to question him. The following morning Paddy learns that the body of the blond woman, a prosecution attorney from a wealthy family, has been found, having been tortured, beaten and left to die, and she is tormented by the possible role she may have played by her quiescence.

    To salve her conscience and, not incidentally, hoping to make her mark as an investigative journalist at the same time, Paddy follows up on the story, which expands when another death follows, whether suicide or murder an uncertain matter.

    Glasgow, its rougher as well as finer areas, the helplessness of those affected by 1980’s unemployment, and the protagonist’s Irish Catholic background, are well drawn, as is Paddy, young, rebellious, hardworking [sole support of her parents and several siblings] and ambitious. The author having interspersed a second pov, contained within but separate from its surrounding chapters, was a bit confusing at first to this reader, as the identity of the second voice in unclear [although the reader knows her name] – it is really her relation to the rest of the story thus far that is not clear. It is not until over 50 pages into the book that her identity becomes evident. The effect of this device is to steadily build the suspense which, despite the book having begun at a moderate pace, grows till the hold-your-breath conclusion and a shocking twist before a very satisfying conclusion. As for that cliffhanger in the last line, the resolution of that will have to await the next book in the series, which I will eagerly await.

    The Dead Hour is the second in the Paddy Meehan series, following Field of Blood, and Ms. Mina’s earlier books, including Deception and the Garnethill trilogy.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 17, 2009

    Must read!

    I can't wait to read all the other books from this author. Easy read but very engaging.

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  • Posted October 25, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Ok, not great but not bad

    This is an ok book....the beginning is great, but the ending is typical. If you pick it up for a plane ride it will hold your interest moderately, but as far as an exciting book, this is not it. It may be that I just was not all that impressed with the main character-Paddy.

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  • Posted February 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    STORY AND NARRATOR PERFECTLY MATCHED

    From time to time a story and narrator seem perfectly matched - such is the case with Heather O'Neill and her narration of The Dead Hour. O'Neill's Scottish burr precisely suits it's both distinctive and distinct. Her reading is firm, thoughtful, apt voice for this story of a bold young reporter, Paddy Meehan. Paddy works for the Scottish Daily News where she's subject to verba jabs from males on the staff. Granted, Paddy is a bit over weight, still there's no need to call her 'wee hen' or 'fat cow,' is there? However, Paddy has much more on her mind than eternal dieting and the insultings comments levied at her - she's working the night shift when she goes to what has been called a domestic dispute in a well-to-do suburb. Once there she sees what appears to be a beautiful blonde woman - it's somewhat difficult to tell as the woman is bleeding from a head wound and rejecting offers of help, first from the police and now from Paddy. The next morning Paddy is shocked to seee on the TV news that the woman she saw last evening has been found murdered. Remembering that she accepted a 50 pound note to go away, Paddy determines to find the woman's killer although that will, as she soon discovers, put her own life in jeopardy. With this, the second in a five book Paddy Meehan series, Denise Mina establishes herself as a writer of note, sketching the city of Glasgow with authenticity and its people with color while spinning a first-rate crime novel. - Gail Cooke

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    A fabulous investigative journalist whodunit

    In 1984, Scottish Daily News twenty-one years old crime reporter Patricia 'Paddy' Meehan arrives at an elegant house in the upper crust Glasgow suburb of Bearsden where a handsome man is talking with police officers McGregor and Gourlay. He informs her and the cops that everything is fine, that it will not happen again and that they prefer it kept out of the papers as he hands her a fifty pound note. Though the journalist remains concerned when she notices that political activist and lawyer Vhari Burnett¿s face is bloodied and bruised, Paddy agrees to remain quiet accepting the bribe as apparently did the cops too.--------------------- The next day Paddy feels guilty for her actions when she learns that Vhari was murdered worse she feels incompetent for not seeing that the culprit had already knocked out Vhari¿s teeth by the time she arrived. Paddy feels she let herself down by selling out her ethics and vows never again while also pondering the reason Vhari failed to leave with them when she could. When the cops pull a suicide victim out of the river, Paddy sees a link between the two cases. She seeks that tie as a means to atone from her personal fall from grace.-------------------- Paddy¿s second appearance (see A FIELD OF BLOOD) is a fabulous investigative journalist whodunit starring a woman learning her profession on the job and in this case receives a powerful life and death lesson on ethics. The story line is centered on Paddy¿s efforts to uncover the truth especially her theory linking the two deaths that her more experienced crime beat peers scoff at. Denise Mina writes a terrific Scottish mystery filled with a strong support cast, a gritty look at the city compared to a posh suburb, and an optimistic heroine who lost a strip of her idealism.---------------- Harriet Klausner

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    Posted July 2, 2011

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    Posted December 27, 2009

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    Posted March 30, 2012

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    Posted January 17, 2009

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    Posted November 5, 2009

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    Posted March 24, 2011

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