When Will There Be Good News? (Jackson Brodie Series #3)

When Will There Be Good News? (Jackson Brodie Series #3)

by Kate Atkinson
3.8 189


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When Will There Be Good News? (Jackson Brodie Series #3) by Kate Atkinson

On a hot summer day, Joanna Mason's family slowly wanders home along a country lane. A moment later, Joanna's life is changed forever...
On a dark night thirty years later, ex-detective Jackson Brodie finds himself on a train that is both crowded and late. Lost in his thoughts, he suddenly hears a shocking sound...
At the end of a long day, 16-year-old Reggie is looking forward to watching a little TV. Then a terrifying noise shatters her peaceful evening. Luckily, Reggie makes it a point to be prepared for an emergency...
These three lives come together in unexpected and deeply thrilling ways in the latest audiobook from Kate Atkinson, the critically acclaimed author who Harlan Coben calls "an absolute must read."

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780316154857
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Publication date: 09/24/2008
Series: Jackson Brodie Series , #3
Pages: 400
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.40(d)

About the Author

Kate Atkinson was born in York in 1951, where her parents ran a surgical supplies shop, and spent a lot of time reading as a child. She’s even commented that being an only child and learning to enjoy her own company, combined with her love of books, probably helped prepare her well for the solitary life of the writer. Atkinson then attended the University of Dundee, where she studied literature and completed a doctoral thesis on the history of the short story form, and came close to pursuing an academic career. However, it was when she left the university and began writing fiction as an escape from the day-to-day domesticity of child-raising and home-making that the seeds of Atkinson’s true calling appeared — the first story she ever sent off for consideration won a major prize, the Woman’s Own Short Story Competition. As she’s explained in one interview, “That was how I became a writer, really. It was a very slow burn. That was from first putting pen to paper around 1982 to winning that competition in 1986 to a novel being accepted in 1994.” That first novel, Behind the Scenes at the Museum, went on to win the prestigious Whitbread Prize for Book of the Year in 1995.

Ever since, Kate Atkinson has been an internationally bestselling author. Her next novels, Human Croquet (1997) and Emotionally Weird (2000), were followed by a collection of short stories called Not the End of the World (2002). It was with this book that Atkinson began to experiment with other narrative points of view. As she explained in one interview, “I had really had enough of the first person by the time I had done with the third book… It was one of the many reasons I wrote a collection of stories at that point, because I wanted to break that voice and get away from it, as well as explore other voices. With stories you can get away with more, and move around, try things on… Once I got the hang of it I found it very liberating, because once you know that character and you want to write them, you just step into their head and think like they think and you write it down, so you can be very fluid and direct.”

Next came Case Histories (2004), a novel that marked Atkinson’s first foray into crime fiction — a label that Atkinson finds to be quite limiting, considering that all of her books have involved mystery or crime elements, and genre classification can be so narrow-minded and elitist. As she explained in one interview, “There are good books, bad books, mediocre books. Why is it necessary to say it’s not any good because it is a crime novel, a romance, or whatever? Jane Austen wrote romance for heaven’s sake. Dickens wrote crime novels.” At the same time, though, Atkinson is a fan of crime fiction herself, so the label doesn’t really bother her — just those people who use it pejoratively. Anyway, the critics and award panels have agreed with Atkinson: Case Histories won the Saltire Book of the Year Award and the Prix Westminster, and has received worldwide acclaim. As the Guardian reviewer put it, the novel was her “best book yet, an astonishingly complex and moving literary detective story that made me sob but also snort with laughter. It’s the sort of novel you have to start rereading the minute you've finished it.”

Case Histories also marks the first appearance of private detective Jackson Brodie (who has proven to be immensely popular with readers), as he attempts to unravel the truth behind three crime files that have been left stagnant for years. And it is in this story — or rather the multiple storylines that make it up — that Atkinson truly begins to play with using different perspectives to gradually unveil her plot. The New York Times described her style as having a “cinematic cleverness,” where characters are left out when you’d expect them to be present, or the point of view changes abruptly, or small “hiccups in time” can add new layers of meaning. Atkinson would bring back both Jackson Brodie and this narrative style with her novel One Good Turn (2006), which is set during the Edinburgh Festival and once again places Brodie at the heart of multiple intersecting mysteries. “The most fun I’ve had with a novel this year,” Ian Rankin noted.

Atkinson’s latest novel, When Will There be Good News?, is the third to feature Jackson Brodie, although the author says she “never thought of it as a trilogy”: “I just thought of it as three books with the same character moving on and evolving, I think, so that by the end of book three, Jackson is in a very different place to what he was at the beginning of book one.” And while Atkinson is herself moving on with her next project — an unrelated novel featuring two female characters at a murder mystery weekend — she does hope to return to Jackson Brodie one day. But for now she feels that the end of When Will There Be Good News? is a “good place to leave him, because he needs to recover, I think, from all kinds of things that have happened to him.”

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When Will There Be Good News? 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 189 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Joanna Hunter, witness to a horrendous crime when she was six, is living a quiet, well-ordered life, until a killer is released from jail. 'When Will There Be Good News' revolves around this central story, but if you think this is an ordinary crime novel, think again! This is the third book in the Jackson Brodie series and when Jackson is around things never go as expected. He is an ex-cop turned private investigator who never really means to do the right thing, but can't seem to stop himself. And doing the right thing, for Jackson, somehow always lands him in hot water. I was pleased to see that Louise, a detective with a heart of gold and emotions of steel, is back. She always gives Jackson a run for his money! I was absolutely charmed by Reggie, mother's helper to Joanna, Sadie, Joanna's loyal (and huge) dog, and by Joanna herself. I can't wait to see if any of them are back in the next book! I listened to the audio version of 'When Will There Be Good News' and Ellen Archer's (2007 Audie Award winner) lovely accent and beautiful characterizations add even more depth to this already fantastic book. A fast paced, intelligent, complex plot, deliciously flawed characters, and truly evil villains make this book a must read!
Constant_ReaderBG More than 1 year ago
This is my first Kate Atkinson book and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I liked her writing style and her ability to make you care about the characters (at least the main ones). I do agree with some of the other reviewers in that there were too many extraneous characters. This book is best read in a short period of time. If you put it down for a day or two you can kind of lose track of who is who.
gl More than 1 year ago
The blurb of When Will There Be Good News? piqued my interest, but the first few pages had me hooked. The novel opens to a scene of violence and loss and gives us six-year-old Joanna Mason's third person account of the day that she lost her family. Somehow, despite the details of the day and Joanna's youth, we get a sense of the woman that she becomes. Admirable, strong, courageous, and simpatico. The other women characters are similarly compelling and parts of the story is told in the third person but from their points of view. There's Reggie who seems to be stalked by death. Brilliant, she did well academically at the horrible posh school where she'd been awarded a scholarship. But socially, the school was a disaster for Reggie. When freed from her mother's watchful eye, Reggie trades school for two jobs and private tutoring of sorts. Reggie's favorite place is at Dr. Hunter's home, with the baby, Dr. Hunter and the dog. Clean, full of light, warm and welcoming, it is where Reggie feels most useful and at home. The organized, well-read, caring, and efficient Dr. Hunter seems a strange match with her dodgy husband in the "entertainment business". But while Reggie and Detective Chief Inspector Louise Monroe may shake their heads, love is a strange business. When you're among those that Dr. Hunter loves, you bask in the warmth of her affection. She'll phone to speak to baby and to the dog. Accomplished but not vain, Dr. Hunter is an "all rounder" - an athlete, musician, gifted doctor, cherished mother, wife, and friend. Her judgement in all things, excepting her husband, seems unimpeachable. Through the character and point of view of Detective Chief Inspector Louise Monroe, the book moves towards the tradition of the British detective novels. Centered on work to the detriment of her marriage and social life, DCI Monroe reminds us that When Will There Be Good News? is a detective thriller and mystery. As DCI Monroe and Reggie work to piece together the mystery of Dr. Hunter's disappearance, the tension rises and leads us to a satisfying end. I thoroughly enjoyed When Will There Be Good News? I laughed, cried, couldn't put it down. If you like detective novels, give it a try. This book is great for a long trip, a cold afternoon or whenever you're looking for a fully satisfying read! Plus, it comes out in paperback on Jan. 10. I'm so glad to have discovered Kate Atkinson. Publisher: Back Bay Books; Reprint edition (January 11, 2010), 416 pages. ISBN-10: 0316012831 Review copy provided by the publish
Terra More than 1 year ago
Read the first twelve pages of When Will There Be Good News? By Kate Atkinson, and I predict that you will continue reading to the last page. The story begins with a tale of childhood and an explosion of violence, and continues years later, as the present intersects with the past.
Sixteen year old Reggie steals the show with her charm, wit and courage ; Jackson Brodie, Detective Inspector Louise Monroe, and Dr. Joanna Hunter have key roles to play, and charm of their own.
Several stories interweave and the reader needs to pay attention. David Needler is a violent husband, Neil Hunter a cypher of a husband, and Andrew Decker a madman, all with key roles to play.
Sadie the dog plays her part, as does Reggie¿s criminal brother Billie, and her eccentric tutor and friend Ms. MacDonald. All in all, a satisfying and well written novel.
The charismatic Jackson Brodie starred in two earlier novels, and now I am drawn to read her other books.
BookAddictFL More than 1 year ago
I am a fan of Kate Atkinson and her writing style but this book didn't work for me. Unlike her other books, the characters in this one didn't grab me. I didn't find Joanna Mason's adult character believable, particularly when compared to the child she was at the start of the story. I found Reggie's character a little bland and it took forever to lead to why she even mattered so much. Overall, there were too many characters doing different things that we were only given snippets of. There were a lot of words but not much going on. When things did happen, it was all sadness. I skimmed over some parts and wondered where the detail was for others. For me, the entire mood of the story was melancholy disarray.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love the book!!!!!!!
booksonmynook More than 1 year ago
really good. I throughly enjoyed this book and finished it within 2 days. would recommend
susieQMI More than 1 year ago
I was very disappointed in this book. The title intrigued me and I was really looking forward to a good read. The storyline really dragged along and though I tried to stay with it for over 150 pages, i just could not finish. I hate to move a book into the archives that I have not finished, but other books on my list were 'calling me' to get to them. I gave up on this book and regret buying it. Don't waste you time or money.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I had a lot of hopes for this book. I was really excited about reading it. This first chapter I was so into, but then it just dragged on and on. The author seems to have too many characters and no point to all of them. Kinda boring to read and probably wont read from this author again.
Drew12 More than 1 year ago
Atkinson's 'When Will There Be Good News?' is the third book of hers to feature Jackson Brodie. He may be clueless about woman, but he's a great PI. The first book 'Case Histories' was my favorite of the three. I remember reading a review about how much detail Atkinson gives while telling an overall mystery and its true. You learn every detail about each person Brodie comes in contact with, but its not overkill. Its a major part of what Atkinson is saying. Its hard not to get emotionally involved-whether in a good way or a bad way-with the characters. Both the ones lost and the ones trying to find them. The second book 'One Good Turn' was my least favorite of the three, but was overall still a great book. There was a lot going on but again the character development was fantastic. 'When Will There Be Good News' closes in on one major story line and these new characters we meet are hard not to like. A few characters from OGT, in addition to Brodie, remain as well. The title is true in that a lot of bad stuff happens, its disheartening and somewhat unbelievable at times. However overall its a great read- even after getting used to Atkinson's style of writing and looking for connections she still manages to surprise in both OGT and WWTBGN. I recommend starting at the start with Case Histories and I bet you'll be inclined to read all three and anything else Atkinson sends your way.
Nutmeg-Anne More than 1 year ago
The story line is a tad convoluted and slow...but readable. The 16 year old nanny...Reggie...often brought "Pippa" of Robert Brownings' "Pippa Passes" to mind...but that didn't improve my critique. The book filled some reading time before my next stack of literary accomplishments arrived. I wouldn't read it again but that's a very personal opinion. To me...it was a humdrum novel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love a good mystery, but there was way too much going on in this book. Too many characters that had nothing to do with the plot. I kept waiting and wondering when it would all come together. It sort of managed that at the end, but not in any way that would make me want to recommend this book. I couldn't wait for it to be finished and have no interest in exploring more books by the same author.
luzabril More than 1 year ago
Briefly, at first I found the swithcing from one character to another confusing, but each began to grow on me. From the young homeless girl to the detective to the missing mother and child, each character wove an intriguing thriller that made the book difficult to stop for interruptions. I enjoyed this much more than the last Atkinson book, and I'm now going back to that one and rereading it.
Miccox99 More than 1 year ago
This book was intriguing to me. Each chapter followed a different characters life or perspective of events. For awhile, I kept wondering why we were following so many different stories then the book started twisting the characters around or through each others lives. In the end, I must say it was quite good. My only complaint is that I didn't realize this was a part of a series and am now frustrated that I've read the third book in the series instead of starting with the first. So now I'm in search of this authors books in the order that they were written so I can read them all and in the proper order from here on out!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. It starts out a little slow but then you can't put it down.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a good story though the author did go off on tangents, so so many. Without the sidebars aplenty, it would have been 4 stars. But that and very little dialog earned it only 3. I will not take a second chance on the author again.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is one of those books that 1/2 way through you suddenly go "OMG"! Love how all the characters come together to close out the story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A good mystery story with twists and turns everywhere. Love Kate Atkinson and her Jackson Brodie mysteries.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago