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The Retribution (Tony Hill and Carol Jordan Series #7)

The Retribution (Tony Hill and Carol Jordan Series #7)

3.7 213
by Val McDermid

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Val McDermid is a world-class crime writer whose books have sold millions worldwide. Now joining the Atlantic Monthly Press list for the first time, she is back with a chilling, high-velocity thriller featuring her immensely popular creations, clinical psychologist Dr. Tony Hill and detective Carol Jordan.

Tony Hill has had a good run. He and detective Carol


Val McDermid is a world-class crime writer whose books have sold millions worldwide. Now joining the Atlantic Monthly Press list for the first time, she is back with a chilling, high-velocity thriller featuring her immensely popular creations, clinical psychologist Dr. Tony Hill and detective Carol Jordan.

Tony Hill has had a good run. He and detective Carol Jordan have put away scores of dangerous criminals at a rate that colleagues envy. But there is one serial killer who has shaped and defined their careers, and whose evil surpasses all others: Jacko Vance, ex-celebrity and sociopath whose brilliance and utter lack of remorse have never left Tony’s mind in the ten years since his imprisonment. Now Jacko has escaped from prison—even more twisted and cunning than before, he is focused on wreaking revenge on Tony and Carol for his years spent in prison.

Tony and Carol don’t know when Jacko will strike, or where. All they know is that Jacko will cause them to feel fear like they’ve never known. A chilling, utterly gripping tour de force, The Retribution is the ideal introduction or re-introduction to the world of Tony Hill and Carol Jordan. It is an unforgettable read.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The return of serial killer Jacko Vance drives McDermid’s superb seventh novel featuring Dr. Tony Hill and Det. Chief Insp. Carol Jordan of the Bradfield police (after 2010’s Fever of the Bone). Vance, the charming TV talk show host responsible for murdering 17 teenage girls in 1997’s The Wire in the Blood, manages to escape from prison just as Carol and her team are on the brink of disbanding at the behest of a new chief superintendent. Carol is also leading the murder investigation of several sex workers, each tattooed with the word mine, but it’s the hunt for Jacko that consumes her and Tony, knowing that he’ll likely direct his pentup anger at the people who helped put him away. Soon Carol’s team is working both cases and both killers are upping the ante (and the body count). The emotional wedge that the sadistic Jacko is able to drive between Tony and Carol makes this one of McDermid’s strongest efforts. 5-city author tour. Agent: Jane Gregory. (Jan.)
From the Publisher

Praise for The Retribution

“Val McDermid’s 25th novel is stunningly good, but it comes with a health warning. Not in the sense of too many detailed descriptions of violence or post mortem examinations, but in what she does in entering the mind of a wholly evil, exceptionally inventive serial killer of teenage girls. . . . Vance is a character in the exaggerated mould of the likes of Hannibal Lector and Lisbeth Salander, and his tussle with Hill and Jordan achieves grotesque, frightening proportions.”—The Times (UK)

“A gripping and well-written crime thriller. If you've been following McDermid's Hill/Jordon series, this new addition won't disappoint you. And if, like me, you're new to Val McDermid's work, The Retribution is a good introduction.”—Paul Davis, The Philadelphia Inquirer

“The novel’s deft prose, sprinkled with psychological insight and sparks of wit, makes it hard to turn away.”—Shelf-Awareness (online)

“[McDermid’s] writing…remains taut and unflinching. . . . As in all her novels, McDermid creates a brooding tension that allows readers to get close to characters whose lives are about to be ripped apart.”—Danuta Kean, The Independent (UK)

“Superb. . . . The emotional wedge that the sadistic Jacko is able to drive between Tony and Carol makes this one of McDermid’s strongest efforts.”—Publishers Weekly

“Val McDermid . . . has done more to establish the British variant of the serial killer than anyone else—so successfully, indeed, that everyone else’s serial killers seem pale imitations . . . . McDermid handles the multiple viewpoints of this complex narrative with assurance. She flicks from crisis to crisis, constantly misdirecting her readers. She is brilliant at sensational set-pieces . . . and Hill and Jordan have a psychological depth that's rare in crime fiction. . . . She also has the ruthless psychological scalpel that forms part of the equipment of all good novelists, whatever their genre. And, fortunately for us, she knows just how to use it.”—Andrew Taylor, The Guardian (UK)

“The villain in the seventh thriller in the Tony Hill series . . . is like a slowly growing tsunami that finally spends its fury on the inhabitants of the shore. . . . As usual, McDermid shifts point-of-view deftly, moving from Jacko’s plans for escape and then retribution to Hill’s and Carol’s thoughts on how to outwit and outrun him. . . . For those who like script-like prose with shock after shock . . . McDermid is perfect.”—Connie Fletcher, Booklist

“It’s perhaps fitting that for McDermid’s 25th novel she’s revisited her most thrillingly murderous creation, Jacko Vance. . . . Put away by McDermid’s crime-cracking dream team—psychological profiler Dr. Tony Hill and DCI Carol Jordan—Vance never stopped plotting his escape. Finally, and brilliantly, in The Retribution he achieves his aim, then sets about exacting revenge on Hill and Jordan.”—Henry Sutton, The Daily Mirror (UK) (four-star review)

“McDermid is such a central figure in British crime fiction that it is hard to imagine a time when she was not.”—David Robinson, The Scotsman (UK)

“British author Val McDermid’s psychological thrillers are richly layered with palpable suspense and intense emotion. . . . In the strongly plotted The Retribution, McDermid returns to the partnership of crime profiler Tony Hill and detective Chief Inspector Carol Jordan. . . . The Retribution moves at a brisk pace as McDermid keeps the taut plot frighteningly believable.”—Oline H. Cogdill, South Florida Sun Sentinel

“McDermid has made the transition from enfant terrible to grande dame.”—Nicholas Wroe, The Guardian (UK)

Product Details

Little, Brown and Company
Publication date:
Tony Hill and Carol Jordan Series , #7

Read an Excerpt

He got his arm behind the driver’s head and rammed him face first into the steering wheel. After the third sickening crunch, the man finally went limp. Still pumped with adrenaline, he jumped out of the car and hustled round to the driver’s side. When he opened the door, the driver slumped towards the road. Vance squatted down and got one shoulder under his torso.

Vance staggered as far as the hedgerow that bordered the road. Breathing heavily, feeling his heart hammer in his chest, he dumped the driver on to the top bar of a metal field gate, then tipped him over on the far side.

He leaned against the wall for a moment, catching his breath, letting himself recover from the overdose of fight or flight hormones. Then he returned to the car, this time to the driver’s seat.

He couldn‘t help wondering how long it would take before someone noticed Jason Collins was still on the Therapeutic Community Wing. And Jacko Vance wasn’t. Before they understood that one of the most notorious and prolific serial killers the UK had ever produced was on the loose. And keen to make up for lost time.

This time, his grin lasted a lot longer than a few minutes.

Meet the Author

A former journalist, Val McDermid is a Scottish mystery and suspense writer known for several popular mystery series centered around the characters Lindsay Gordon, Kate Brannigan, Tony Hill, and Carol Jordan. McDermid’s first Hill/Jordan novel, The Mermaids Singing, won the Gold Dagger Award for Best Crime Novel of the Year, while her book A Place of Execution was nominated for the Edgar Award, among other honors.

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The Retribution 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 213 reviews.
none0 More than 1 year ago
I only recently discovered the Tony Hill/Carol Jordan series and Val McDermid. While I really like the police work and investigative aspects of the story, I get really tired of reading about main characters who are so flawed and damaged. There's enough of that sort of thing in real life, and like most people, I read to escape, not to be thrown into the mindset of a damaged character who's creator is about to inflict even more damage on them as happens in this book. Will I read another Tony Hill book? Very likely. Will the aforementioned problems affect my enjoyment of same? Absolutely.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Two Things: B&N has no say in what's free, or not; that is left to the publisher to decide. #2: THANKS to those Reviewers who give details; that's what a good review does. Third thing: Our complaints to each other or to B&N are also *NOT* good reviews, either. (Guilty as charged.) We must stop this bad habit and leave these spaces for the TRUE reviewers to post their helpful reviews for us.
ritaink13 More than 1 year ago
I am a huge fan of Val McDermid. I have read this entire series, her stand alones and other series. I read many different genres and enjoy crime/mystery novels for entertainment. However, I still like a well written book with interesting characters. Val McDermid's writing is top shelf and her character development is second to none. The only downside is that since I just finished this particular book I am wanting more but, alas, I will have to wait.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am amazed that in this day and tech age that readers have yet to find the delete button! This is a free book. You have not invested any money. You don't like the language, delete it. You realize it is part of a series, delete it. If you don't like the character (the only review worth reading, IMHO) thank you for letting us know. The other reviews could have been a "heads up" notice instead of griping about a free book! Thank you to B&N for the free fridays. If there is something about a FREE book that you give me, I will give a heads up to my fellow " Nooker's", but I will still be grateful to you for giving me a book. The was a time in my life when I could not affordnew books, so even today when I recieve a book, I am eternally grateful. M. Lema
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I just discovered this series. I've totally enjoyed it. Thanks for evolving, non-static characters.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you dont like cusswords then delete the book. No point in whining about it
Camsgrand2001 More than 1 year ago
I am probably one of McDermid's biggest US fans. Her book are so involved in the plot, you can't put them down without thinking about it. I can't wait for the next one. Keep up the good work Val. You know who-dun-it, you just want to know what you can do to stop it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is the first time that I have read anything from this author and I was pleasantly surprised. The plot is fast paced, with interesting characters.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A bit slow to start then it got really interesting and exciting then it rushed through everything and just ended. I'm disappointed that two promising mysteries ended the way they did.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I had to skip so many pages while reading this book. It was a slog to get through. It had a late plot line development that felt like an afterthought and an unsatisfying end . Waste of time.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It just happens that the only other book I have read in this series was The Wire in the Blood, which introduced the villain from this installment. This book was certainly well written, and I was surprised by the final twist. However, I found the ending quite lackluster and anticlimactic.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book kept me guessing the whole time. It is a little horrific in parts of the book, but the plot is very good. Even though this book is part of a series, it isn't necessary to have read the first few books to follow allong.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is one of the best free friday books I have had the pleasure of reading. The story lines were quick moving and therefore easily held my interest. The ending was abrupt, but overall this was a novel worthy of a warm blanket, and hot chocolate evening
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sometimes the British words or phrases got in the way of understanding some things. Usually I know some words but there were plenty in this book. 370 Nook pages. (dw)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is the first book I've read from this author. First time I've ever wanted the villian to win. Characters are so unlikable, I found myself skipping forward to Jacko's scenes. The auxillary serial killer storyline could have been left out entirely since it was filler to give the lesser team members something to do and fill up more pages. Beacause I disliked the main characters, I have to admit I enjoyed the ending.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Not terrible but not great. The ending is pretty lame annd anticlimatic. Just meh.
MKPMRP More than 1 year ago
I thoroughly enjoy this murder mystery. It was a page turner for me, just couldn't put it down after I really got started on it. Wasn't too crazy about the ending but it is book 7 of a series and they might all end similarly. I highly recommend it. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I liked the book but I think part of the problem was that this was the first book I read and it is part of a series;the book has to explain what happened in the past.   As an American I had to get used to the British English. Got it as part of Free Fridays
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Enjoyed the interaction of the characters and suspenseful story line