The Black Country (Scotland Yard's Murder Squad Series #2)

The Black Country (Scotland Yard's Murder Squad Series #2)

by Alex Grecian
3.9 33


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Black Country 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 33 reviews.
Ronrose More than 1 year ago
An interesting story set in 1890's England detailing the adventures of Scotland Yard's Murder Squad. This case is centered around the Black Country, the center of coal production in the Midlands of England far from the crowded streets of London. Inspector Walter Day and his squad have been asked to help find three missing & presumed dead members of a coal mining family. A small child has gone missing along with his father and step mother. Three other small children of the same family have been left to shift for themselves. In a late season blizzard that is blanketing the countryside, there are more mysteries to solve than just the missing family members. What is the strange sickness that has gripped over half of the villagers? Who is the mysterious stranger built like a brick wall and just as talkative? Why don't the villagers seem to be overly concerned with the families disappearance? I enjoyed the atmosphere and the plot. I was a little disappointed that some of the answers to the mysteries were telegraphed early in the story. The story would have been more entertaining if the suspense could have been maintained longer. Book provided for review by the well read folks at Library Thing and Putnam.
Hoku1111 More than 1 year ago
I loved this book! The story line was filled with twists and turns, but was not confusing where the reader must turn back a few pages to re-read the past pages. The characters are all well developed such that the reader is able to relate to the internal thought process of each character. Moreover, the authors description of the places that the characters live and visit are rich and colorful. In turn, this allows the reader to enjoy the journey to the end of the book. I highly recommend this book.
bobsocean More than 1 year ago
Not sure why I stayed with this book to the end? Nothing like the cover implies. The two investigators from Scotland Yard were next to useless in solving the case. At the end it solved itself through confessions and pure luck. Too much of the story was about this coal mine town and the sinking homes, gray skies and constant snow storm. Silly conversations with children and detectives dominated the story. Why a flashback to the US Civil War was necessary, I'll never understand? Save your hard earned money people, and go buy something else.
CrazyForNewBooks More than 1 year ago
A fantastic follow-up to The Yard; a spellbinding story full of intrigue and interesting characters. A town full of people, many who seem to have their own agenda, is it to protect the missing family or to hamper the detectives in their investigation? Are the 3 remaining children from the missing family keeping a secret of their own, or are they trying to protect their missing family members? Will the town still be standing if and when the family is found? So many things going on but all carefully intertwined to produce a thrilling read.
Anonymous 12 months ago
PainFrame More than 1 year ago
Here now, what’s this then? This follow up to “The Yard” is entertaining enough, but it loses a little something by taking the casework out of London and into the countryside. I still found it to be of interest and I definitely felt for the poor sap detective who is under the weather in such a harsh environment. What I like about historical fiction is still present here, namely the things which don’t really have as much of an influence in the modern age; such as the lack of forensic science, superstitions which veil the truth and neat details like a city slowly sinking into the mines beneath it, or a villain who uses very cool, but highly conspicuous hexagonal bullets. A worthy follow up to the first one, which I loved. I look forward to the third which I hope will take us back to the captivating setting of nineteenth-century London. A good series so far, but start with the first one!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The story although good felt too wordy.
kilthosemk More than 1 year ago
Usually second books don't add up to the first. This book does. A great page turner you won't want to put down.
Ed_Ral More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed the first book in this series. This one was a bit disjointed. The story line seemed a mishmash of several story lines and did not seem, to me, to resolve themselves to my satisfaction by the end of the story. However, I look forward to book #3 in this series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I liked this book although it wasn't as good a The Yard. Some gore but the language did not offend. I agree that the inclusion of the Civil War aspect was unnecessary to the story. I will buy the next book by this author.
moldyworm12 More than 1 year ago
Using collapsing coal mines as a backdrop for a series of murders Is a unique and interesting idea. I enjoyed the first novel in this collection and this second one was as good or better. Looking forward to number three.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
You here
RonnaL More than 1 year ago
This is the second book about the beginnings of Scotland Yard's Detective Squad,  Inspector Day, Sergeant Hammersmith, and forensics Dr. Kingsley have been sent to a British Midland's mining town in 1890, to find a husband, his second wife and their young son.  The three young children of the missing man's first wife and somewhat reluctant to help in the investigation.  This mining town is slowly sinking into the numerous tunnels below it.  The town's folks are stepped in tradition, rumors and superstitions and are also in the middle of a sickness that has been contacted by a majority of the towns folks.  Atmosphere and superstition drive this mystery, along with an interesting connection to the happenings in the USA. The fate of the missing people is precariously connected to the fate of the town.  The Detectives need to hurry and solve their case before they are figuratively and literally drawn into this town forever. The history and atmosphere of this story was excellent, but I found it less enjoyable than the first book--THE YARD-- because so much of what happened was driven by natural happenings rather than detecting.  There was a sense of morbidity about this story that was very depressing.  The characters continued to evoke a sense of learning from their experiences though, and I have hopes that the mental detecting aspects of a The a Yard will return more fully in succeeding books.  
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I found this book to be very tedious.  I almost didn't finish it but kept hoping that it would improve. It did not.  I am somewhat surprised that anyone gave it a 5 star rating but each to his own. I got the distinct feeling that the author didn't have the plot firmed up in his mind before writing and so made it up as he went along  and not very well at that.  
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A fun fast read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
SherlockRK More than 1 year ago
I picked up the first in this series, The Yard, off a table at B&N marked "Must Read for 2013." It was riveting from page one, and I immediately ordered the next in the series. It was such a quick, riveting read, in part because all of the character backgrounds have been established in the first installment. I have already pre-ordered the third in the series.
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WriteReason More than 1 year ago
An interesting tale, but completely contrived from beginning to end.  Nothing like The Yard--found very little connection to the two tales, except for the names of a few characters.  Still a reasonably good read, but missed the expectations I had from reading The Yard.   
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I wish I had More in this series to read... I absolutely love this series and these characters. A must read for anyone who loves amazing historical mysteries