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The Blackhouse

H police detective Fin Macleod is dispatched north to investigate But since he himself was raised on Lewis the investigation also represents a journey home and into his pastEach year the island's men perform the hunting of the gugas a savage custom no longer necessary for survival but which they cling to even fiercely in the face of th. I loved seeing the island through May s eyes and Fin s memories of growing up there The writing is excellent The murder mystery read like an overlay of an additional story and the explanation at the end was a bit of a letdown That being said I ordered the seuel as soon as finished this one Rounding up 4 stars

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E demands of modern morality For Fin the hunt recalls a horrific tragedy which after all this time may have begun to demand another sacrificeThe Blackhouse is a crime novel of rare power and vision Peter May has crafted a page turning murder mystery that explores the darkness in our souls and just how difficult it is to escape the past. The Black House by Peter May is a 2011 uercus publication I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher and Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review The Isle of Lewis is a place Fin Macleod thought he would never have to visit again But as fate would have it a murder has been committed on the Isle of Lewis that bears a remarkable similarity to a murder case Fin is working on in Edinburgh So he is told to he must check out this latest murder to see if the crimes could be related Fin gets than he ever bargained for when he returns home for the first time in many years He encounters his first girlfriend his best buddy and floods of memories begin to pour out of his subconscious mind It just so happens that the murdered man was a bully that made life miserable for Fin and his friends Over the years the man only became an adult bully and was not a popular guy There is no shortage of suspects some of whom were old friends of Fin s As the memories of childhood become pronounced and as Fin begins to uncover numerous secrets it looks as though another murder is about to happen and Fin must race against time to prevent itWow What a well woven brilliantly told story with an incredible climax that will leave you gasping for air Fin is a man that is a terrible place in his life when he is assigned this case He has just lost his only son in a terrible accident and as a result his marriage is falling apart Being in this fragile state perhaps made it easier for all those old thoughts and feeling to come to the surface Seeing his first love now married to his best friend when he lived on the Isle and having to interview his old school mates as a part of his job is very awkward and painful but then a bombshell is dropped in his lap which changes Fin s perceptions of things The author did a wonderful job of enlightening the reader about Fin s childhood the death of his parents being raised by his sort of eccentric aunt and various experiences he lived through that might have damaged most of us severely One major shock after another unfolds until the awful terrible truth is finally revealed The race to save a potential victim was incredible suspense and I could hardly bear it I was literally riveted I couldn t stop reading this once I started it The murder mystery and the revelations of Fin s life and all the incredible guilt and bad luck he had was drama at it s finest Fin s low key character held a great deal of pain and sorrow but he was always in control of himself However he felt things much deeply than anyone realizes because for years he has buried much of his life on the Isle in the back of his mind and has never addressed all the things that happened there After having put the reader through so many gut wrenching emotional and suspenseful moments the author somehow manages to give the reader hope for the Fin He does an amazing thing that I felt would go a long ways toward bringing about healing and forgiveness to those who certainly deserved it after all they endured Very well written with characters we could relate to and feel for I also enjoyed reading about the traditions on The Rock and the purpose of the black house The scenery and locations set the stage for tone and atmosphere of the story and it fit perfectly I highly recommend this book to those that enjoy psychological thrillers suspense and mysteries There is some strong language and emotional topics that are difficult to read also there are passages of detailed forensics so be aware this book does have a dark tone This is the first book in a trilogy and I have already placed The Lewis Man in my ueueThis one deserves the top honor 5 stars

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The Isle of Lewis is the most remote harshly beautiful place in Scotland where the difficulty of existence seems outweighed only by people's fear of God But older pagan values lurk beneath the veneer of faith the primal yearning for blood and revengeWhen a brutal murder on the island bears the hallmarks of a similar slaying in Edinburg. Having recently read and enjoyed Peter May s stand alone book Entry Island I was urged by several of my Goodreads friends to seek out his Lewis Trilogy I also recalled that a former colleague of mine someone who hardly ever picked up a book of any description had read this mini series and pronounced it the best thing I ve ever read Ok it might have been the only thing he ever read but all signs seemed to be pointing in the same directionSo I launched myself into this book with high hopes The early sections scoped out the fact that two similar murders had occurred one in Edinburgh and the other on the remote Isle of Lewis and that a youngish copper Fin McLeod had been sent to Lewis to see if he could establish whether the two incidents were in any way linked Fin we learn was born and brought up on Lewis and left the Hebridean Island after completing his schooling As he meets up with the locals many of whom remember him it s a small island with a population on the scale of a medium sized English town we start to understand of what it must have been like for him to have lived his early years in this place three hours north of the Scottish mainland It has strong Calvinist traditions and the way things are done are often than not the way things have always been done It must have felt like a prison to a feisty ambitious youngster such as he One custom that features large in the story is that of the annual trip to a forbidding rock called An Sgeir to cull two thousand young gannets known in Gaelic as guga a real event I ve subseuently learnt The meat is considered a delicacy and each year twelve men from Lewis are chosen to complete this dangerous but revered task They set off in a trawler to navigate some of the Atlantic s most treacherous waters to reach this place it s a fifty mile trip and it takes about eight hours Once there they scramble onto the rock where they will stay for up to two weeks Actually they ll stay for as long as it takes to complete the job Conditions are appalling and the task is grim beyond belief It s all superbly described and I really felt I was on that rock amongst the noise and smell and with the sense of death that pervades the whole thingSo it s a crime story but it also becomes the history of Fin s early life as we are switched back and forth between past and present In a strange way the pace of life on the Island feels slow and plodding but at the same time the story races along with plenty of twists and action a neat trick that I uickly became totally absorbed The characterisations are terrific and the descriptions of the island really brings it to life The story is tied up effectively at the end and like most readers I d guess I felt I d not yet had enough of Fin or his fellow islanders In fact I ve already started Lewis Man the follow up book such was the power of this one Great stuff and highly recommended


10 thoughts on “The Blackhouse

  1. says:

    “Knew too that it wasn’t just Mona he wanted to run away from It was everything Back to a place where life had once seemed simple A return to childhood back to the womb How easy it was now to ignore the fact that he had spent most

  2. says:

    We left on the midnight tide diesel engines thudding as we slipped out into the bay from the relative shelter of the harbour facing into the huge swell waves breaking over the bow to pour in foaming rivers across the deck   It seemed no time at all until the lights of Ness were swallowed by the night as we yawed and pitched into open seas beyond the Butt of Lewis  The last thing to vanish was the comforting flash of the lightho

  3. says:

    Having recently read and enjoyed Peter May’s stand alone book Entry Island I was urged by several of my Goodreads friends to seek out his Lewis Trilogy I also recalled that a former colleague of mine – someone who hardly ever picked up a book of any description – had read this mini series and pronounced it the ‘best thing I’ve ever read’ Ok it might have been the only thing he ever read but all sig

  4. says:

    This novel is the first of a trilogy – the Lewis Trilogy The Isle of Lewis is the largest island in the outer Hebrides It is 683 suare miles 1770 suare kilometres has a population of less than 20000 and was once part of The Norse Kingdom of Mann and the IslesThe story within this novel is simply amazing and beautifully written Heart pounding moments of man against the elements and man against man There is a murder involved whi

  5. says:

    I loved seeing the island through May's eyes and Fin's memories of growing up there The writing is excellent The murder mystery read like an overlay of an additional story and the explanation at the end was a bit of a letdown That

  6. says:

    This book practically read itself it was so good We nearly had no lunch today because I could not find a place in the text where I wanted to stopI loved all the descriptions of the Hebrides somewhere I have not been but would love to see one day The author manages to create the scene so well and it is a very fitting place to set this tale of mystery and murderThe main character Fin has returned to the village where he spent his childhood

  7. says:

    The Black House by Peter May is a 2011 uercus publication I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher a

  8. says:

    The Blackhouse is the first of a trilogy written by Peter May which won The Barry Award in 2013 Set in the harsh northern region of the Isle of Lewis in Scotland the author masterfully describes the Gaelic culture and terrain so well that you feel you are there Detective Inspector Fin Macleod returns to his childhood home to investigate a murder very similar to one he is working on in Edinburgh The victim is a bully from his past that brin

  9. says:

    Rating 3 of five but just barelyThe Publisher Says From acclaimed author and television dramatist Peter May comes the first book in the Lewis Trilogy a riveting mystery series set on the Isle of Lewis in Scotland's Outer Hebrides a formidable and forbidding world where tradition rules and people adhere to ancient ways o

  10. says:

    There is something alluring at least for me with crime novels placed on islands especially those far up in the north with bad weather and people that have known each other for generations I mean it wouldn't be the same if it would be set on a Caribbean paradise for instance who would ever want to leave in the first place Too idyllic I prefer these dark and rugged places with old secretsFin Macleod From the clan Macleo

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