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The Heron's Cry
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The Heron's Cry (Hardback)

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'Matthew Venn is a keeper . . . stunning' David Baldacci

The number one Sunday Times bestselling series featuring Detective Matthew Venn, from author and creator of the Vera and Shetland series, Ann Cleeves - soon to be a major TV series.

North Devon is enjoying a rare hot summer with tourists flocking to its coastline. Detective Matthew Venn is called out to a rural crime scene at the home of a group of artists. What he finds is an elaborately staged murder - Dr Nigel Yeo has been fatally stabbed. His daughter Eve is a glassblower, and the murder weapon is a shard of one of her broken vases.

Dr Yeo seems an unlikely murder victim. He's a good man, a public servant, beloved by his daughter. Matthew is unnerved, though, to find that she is a close friend of Jonathan, his husband.

Then another body is found - killed in a similar way. Matthew finds himself treading carefully through the lies that fester at the heart of his community and a case that is dangerously close to home . . .

The Heron's Cry is the second novel in Ann Cleeves' Two Rivers crime series, following her Sunday Times bestseller, The Long Call.

Praise for The Long Call

'As a huge fan of both the Shetland and Vera series of books, I had high expectations for Cleeves' latest. Matthew Venn is a keeper. A stunning debut for Cleeves' latest crimefighter' - David Baldacci

'Had me hooked . . . a promising beginning to another fine chapter in the Ann Cleeves story' - The Times

'A triumph that cements Cleeves' status as one of Britain's best crime writers' - Daily Express

'Clever, compassionate and atmospheric . . . I am already a Matthew Venn fan' - Elly Griffiths

'Cleeves combines a flair for evoking sense of place with a thoughtful, complex plot' - Mail on Sunday

'A traditional mystery of the best sort' - Guardian

Fiction & PoetryCrime & ThrillersFiction & PoetryModern & contemporary fiction post c 1945 Publisher: Pan Macmillan Publication Date: 02/09/2021 ISBN-13: 9781509889686  Details: Type: Hardback Format: Books
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Ann Cleeves is the author of over thirty critically acclaimed novels, and in 2017 was awarded the highest accolade in crime writing, the CWA Diamond Dagger. She is the creator of popular detectives Vera Stanhope and Jimmy Perez, who can now be found on television in ITV's Vera and BBC One's Shetland. The TV series and the books they are based on have become international sensations, capturing the minds of millions worldwide. The Heron's Cry is book two in her Two Rivers series featuring Devonian Matthew Venn. The first book in the series, The Long Call, was published to critical acclaim. It is currently being adapted for television. Ann worked as a probation officer, bird observatory cook and auxiliary coastguard before she started writing. She is a member of 'Murder Squad', working with other British northern writers to promote crime fiction. She lives in North Tyneside near where the Vera books are set.

More books by Ann Cleeves

Customer Reviews

Detective Matthew Venn is a careful, thoughtful man. When he is called in to investigate the sudden death of a man in the informal rural home of a group of artists, he is a little thrown by the whole set up. His husband Jonathan would be far more at home amidst glassblowers and other craft workers, but he is not in the police and Matthew has Jen and Ross to help him officially. The carefully staged murder of a doctor is unexpected, especially when it seems that his daughter Eve was meant to discover the killing with a piece of her handblown glass as the weapon. As the investigation proceeds Matthew must struggle to keep his own feelings in check in the face of irregular lifestyles, lies and deceptions before another person dies, and people’s real motives are revealed. This is a novel that captures the reader’s interest immediately and maintains it throughout. The plot is satisfyingly complex and winding, the setting (with fictional additions) is beautifully drawn, and the characters are memorable in their depth. Ranging from Jen whose realism and compassion power her work in dealing with the people and the complexities of the communities involved to the financial genius Francis Ley, whose loneliness has created the establishment of the big house, farm and workshops at Westacombe in North Devon, the characters have real depth. Matthew’s background of a strict religious community and his remaining propensity for feeling guilt is in sharp contrast with Jonathan’s intuitive and creative ability with people, a contrast which leads to both positive and negative outcomes for their relationship when a case comes dangerously close to home. I was delighted to have the opportunity to read and review this brilliantly written and immersive book, where mystery, risk and danger combine in an innocent seeming setting. Jen first encounters the victim in a social setting when she is not at her most perceptive. Dr. Nigel Yeo was a skilled doctor working in a local hospital who had begun working with a Patients support group in order to have more time with his wife. Following her death, he had been working with his daughter Eve in her growing glass making studio. When he approached Jen at a party, he seemed to be trying to ask her to help with a case which he had become involved in. As the investigation into who could have possibly had a motive to murder a seemingly well-loved man proceeds, other people and situations become entangled. Matthew is aware that he is in danger of letting his own difficulties get in the way of a solution, and Jen and Ross must think laterally to come up with a complete picture of why a particular artist’s work is becoming a weapon. This is murder mystery story which regards the victims and potential witnesses as real people who are struggling to understand what is happening in a relatively small community. The pace is well judged to allow space for thought but never drags. There is an excellent understanding of the pressures of contemporary policing; but this novel goes far beyond being a police procedural. This book is the second in a series but definitely works as a standalone, which is how I read it. This is a vibrant and extremely readable novel which I greatly enjoyed. I recommend it to Cleeves’ fans and in complete confidence that it will make many new ones!

- 09/09/2021
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