The Long Drop
 Read over 2 days.

The Long Drop

William Watt wants answers about his family’s murder. Peter Manuel has them. But Peter Manuel is a liar.

William Watt is an ordinary businessman, a fool, a social climber.

Peter Manuel is a famous liar, a rapist, a criminal. He claims he can get hold of the gun used to murder Watt’s family.

One December night in 1957, Watt meets Manuel in a Glasgow bar to find out what he knows.

Based on true events, The Long Drop is an extraordinarily unsettling, evocative and compelling novel from a writer at the height of her powers

My thoughts:
I am a big fan of Denise’s writing and this book did not disappoint . this book is a read that grips the reader from the start. It blends fact with fiction.
It could be classed as a crime novel, true crime because it concerns actual people and also historical fiction as it is set 60 years ago.
William Smart wants to know who killed his family?
Peter Manuel says he knows who did it. But he’s a liar!
I was 8 years old when the events in this book transpired and Denise conjured the Glasgow of my childhood admirably.
William Smart is a successful business man, a social climber with ideas above his station.
Peter Manuel is a Billy Liar figure, living a dream world of fanciful happenings and events, most of which are in his imagination. He is also a petty thief and rapist.
One thing is true is that William and Peter did meet in Glasgow and spent 11 hours drinking.
This was not rare as Glasgow at that time was full of clubs, down trodden pubs and illegal drinking dens.
The fictitious conservation and events that Denise conjures for this 11 hour has the reader wondering, Did it, or could it have happened?
Glasgow at that that time was a bleak gap toothed city recovering from the Blitz and full of seedy characters, two of which are William and Peter.
It was also a city populated by men, run by men for men.
A superb read. Worthy of five stars. A urge you all to grab a copy and dive in.
My thoughts are entirely my own.


Denise Mina 

Denise Mina

Goodreads Author


in Glasgow, The United Kingdom 



Member Since
March 2013

Denise Mina was born in Glasgow in 1966. Because of her father’s job as an Engineer, the family followed the north sea oil boom of the seventies around Europe
She left school at sixteen and did a number of poorly paid jobs, including working in a meat factory, as a bar maid, kitchen porter and cook.
Eventually she settled in auxiliary nursing for geriatric and terminal care patients.
At twenty one she passed exams, got into study Law at Glasgow University and went on to research a PhD thesis at Strathclyde University on the ascription of mental illness to female offenders, teaching criminology and criminal law in the mean time.
Misusing her grant she stayed at home and wrote a novel, ‘Garnethill’ when she was supposed to be studying instead.

None but the Dead
 Read over 4 days:

None but the Dead (Rhona MacLeod #11)

Sanday, one of Britain’s northernmost islands, inaccessible when the wind prevents the ferry from the mainland crossing, or fog grounds the tiny island hopping plane. When human remains are discovered to the rear of an old primary school, forensic expert Dr Rhona MacLeod and her assistant arrive to excavate the grave. Approaching mid-winter, they find daylight in short supply, the weather inhospitable, and some of the island’s inhabitants less than cooperative. When the suspicious death of an old man in Glasgow appears to have links with the island, DS Michael McNab is dispatched to investigate. Desperately uncomfortable in such surroundings, he finds that none of the tools of detective work are there. No internet, no CCTV, and no police station. As the weather closes in, the team, which includes criminal profiler and Orcadian Professor Magnus Pirie, are presented with a series of unexplained incidents, apparently linked to the discovery of 13  magic flowers representing the souls of dead children who had attended the island school where the body was discovered. But how and in what circumstance did they die, and why are their long forgotten deaths significant to the current investigation? As a major storm approaches, bringing gale force winds and high seas, the islanders turn on one another, as past and present evil deeds collide, and long buried secrets break surface, along with the exposed bones.
Wow, wow is all I can say. What a brilliant book! The writing, research and atmosphere draws you in and wont let go. Set in the Shetland island of Sanday, where human remains have been uncovered, sees Dr Rhona Macleod and her assistant Chrissy called in to investigate.
Meanwhile in Glasgow, DS. McNab is investigating the death of an elderly man who has links to the island.
This sees McNab volunteering to go to Sanday. To further his investigation or see Rhona, who knows? As the investigation continues they find the inhabitants closing ranks and treating the incomers with suspicion.
One of these incomers Mike, who has secrets of his own, finds a muslin flower in his loft and takes it to Sam Flett at the Heritage Centre. He is told that it represents the soul of a dead child and he is told to return it to where he found it.
If you have never been to Shetland this book will make you want to go, if only to sample the atmosphere that Lin has created.
This book has you turning the pages and gasping in fear when Lin throws you another curve ball.
All characters are well drawn and have you rooting for them.
A finely carved tale which will have you cheering, cringing and wondering what will happen next.
If you haven’t read any of Lin’s books, I would say grab one and dive in,
A superb read and 5 stars from me


Lin Anderson was born in Greenock of Scottish and Irish parents. A graduate of both Glasgow and Edinburgh Universities, she has lived in many different parts of Scotland and also spent five years working in the African bush. A teacher of Mathematics and Computing, she began her writing career four years ago. Her first film, Small Love, which was broadcast on STV, was nominated for TAPS writer of the year award 2001. Her African short stories have been published in the 10th Anniversary Macallan collection and broadcast on BBC Radio Four.