Official Review: The 11.05 Murders by Brian O'Hare

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katiesquilts
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Official Review: The 11.05 Murders by Brian O'Hare

Post by katiesquilts » 04 Jan 2017, 08:02

[Following is the official OnlineBookClub.org review of "The 11.05 Murders" by Brian O'Hare.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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It starts with one murder on a Tuesday afternoon. Then another, exactly a week later. Police are left scrambling to predict the next victim before a third murder can occur. Sergeant Stewart is on the case, but for some reason she is attracted to an incident that occurred 12 years earlier, with no obvious connections to her current dilemma. A secret informant, a possible stalker… The more Stewart and her team discover, the further they seem to find themselves entangled in this murderer’s devilish web.

The 11.05 Murders by Brian O’Hare is the second in the Inspector Sheehan series, but it can be read perfectly fine as a standalone novel. Each of the characters is introduced with memorable and witty commentary, leaving a lasting impression on the reader. O’Hare taunts his readers with the same problems that real police have – too little information, too much information, incorrect information, and of course, no idea how any of it fits together.

The idea that the killer could have literally been any of the suspects was what kept my eyes glued to the pages. As soon as I made up my mind to convict one character, another came by with a shaky alibi, soon outdone by another suspect’s contradictory evidence, later cast once more into suspicion by the word of an eyewitness, and so the drama went on. The engaging dialogue and fast-paced story kept me guessing up until almost the last page.

My one complaint, however, would be the contradiction of the characters’ thoughts with their actions. For example, Sergeant Stewart is the only woman on the police force – a fact which garners attention, amorous and otherwise. However, she is adamant that she be treated like one of the team. She always acts affronted by the attention she receives from her multiple love interests, but her attitude takes a complete turn by the end of the novel. In my personal opinion, it was a bit of an unfortunate character development.

Overall, I give The 11.05 Murders 4 out of 4 stars. The plot was full of twists and turns that alternatively piqued and satisfied my imagination. Although I’m not the greatest fan of romance in murder mysteries – hence my complaint above – I have to admit that Sergeant Stewart’s happy ending was just as satisfying as any other ending might have been. I would recommend this book to mystery fans, especially those who like to be kept guessing. I would not recommend it to readers who cannot handle a little bit of gore, sexual violence, or mentions of domestic abuse and rape.

******
The 11.05 Murders
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Post by professor26 » 04 Jan 2017, 16:39

Hi Katiesquilts. Thank you for your kind and very complimentary review. I appreciate your comments. Brian.

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Post by greenstripedgiraffe » 05 Jan 2017, 11:03

This sounds like a fantastic book overall! Good job on the review :)
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Post by katiesquilts » 06 Jan 2017, 22:03

professor26 wrote:Hi Katiesquilts. Thank you for your kind and very complimentary review. I appreciate your comments. Brian.
You're welcome! And thank you for writing such an interesting novel! I'm always happy when I can write reviews full of praise for the author.

-- 06 Jan 2017, 22:04 --
greenstripedgiraffe wrote:This sounds like a fantastic book overall! Good job on the review :)
Thank you! :D

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Post by Kdonegan91 » 08 Jan 2017, 21:10

Great review! Besides the slight character development issue, this sounds like a fantastic book.
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Post by kimmyschemy06 » 10 Jan 2017, 06:11

Wow! Sounds like a great read. Too bad, though, about the contradictions between the characters' thoughts and actions. They make it harder for the readers to relate to the characters. Good job on the review.

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Post by Veronica_Castle » 11 Jan 2017, 07:03

This is a really clever thriller and a worthy sequel to Mr. O'Hare's previous book, The Doom Murders. The murder squad's story picks up after the assignment of a woman detective to their team, making an appropriate link with the violent rape case and following suicide which proves to have links with the current serial murders they are investigating. I would however take violent issue with the comments about this female detective character's behaviour not matching her attitude as established at the start of the book. It is perfectly clear that anyone coming from such an unfavourable environment as her previous job, with the complication that she is reviled as a "whistleblower" being added to endemic misogyny, would at first be defensive in the extreme and have trouble relating normally to a more normal working environment. I thought the book showed the gradual thawing process, with the mis-steps as previous experiences prompt unwarrantably prickly responses that are regretted but can't be called back, very well. While it can take some time to get over a learned resistance to accept approaches at face value, the situation is complicated by the lady detective's instinctive reservation about one character's motives which causes corresponding difficulties in dealing with other more genuine, if sometimes bigoted, reactions to her presence. Like in The Doom Murders, during the course of the book the character learns something about themselves and thaws to a more balanced approach to life. I am glad that the cheap tv-episode device of continuing a character's established grumpy or other "leitmotif" attitude throughout was not resorted to here, and that the character was shown to have healed in large measure from her traumatic previous job experience: this book stands alone as a great read, even if you have not previously read The Doom Murders and are unfamiliar with Detective Chief Inspector Sheehan's investigative team setup. I would so love to see this done on television: these books are just as good as the long-running Inspector Morse series!

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Post by CatInTheHat » 11 Jan 2017, 13:47

I love a crime mystery where I keep getting it wrong on "who done it". I may need to add this one to my wish list.
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Post by katiesquilts » 14 Jan 2017, 04:12

Veronica_Castle wrote:This is a really clever thriller and a worthy sequel to Mr. O'Hare's previous book, The Doom Murders. The murder squad's story picks up after the assignment of a woman detective to their team, making an appropriate link with the violent rape case and following suicide which proves to have links with the current serial murders they are investigating. I would however take violent issue with the comments about this female detective character's behaviour not matching her attitude as established at the start of the book. It is perfectly clear that anyone coming from such an unfavourable environment as her previous job, with the complication that she is reviled as a "whistleblower" being added to endemic misogyny, would at first be defensive in the extreme and have trouble relating normally to a more normal working environment. I thought the book showed the gradual thawing process, with the mis-steps as previous experiences prompt unwarrantably prickly responses that are regretted but can't be called back, very well. While it can take some time to get over a learned resistance to accept approaches at face value, the situation is complicated by the lady detective's instinctive reservation about one character's motives which causes corresponding difficulties in dealing with other more genuine, if sometimes bigoted, reactions to her presence. Like in The Doom Murders, during the course of the book the character learns something about themselves and thaws to a more balanced approach to life. I am glad that the cheap tv-episode device of continuing a character's established grumpy or other "leitmotif" attitude throughout was not resorted to here, and that the character was shown to have healed in large measure from her traumatic previous job experience: this book stands alone as a great read, even if you have not previously read The Doom Murders and are unfamiliar with Detective Chief Inspector Sheehan's investigative team setup. I would so love to see this done on television: these books are just as good as the long-running Inspector Morse series!
Thank you for posting your own review of the novel! I always love to hear others' opinions.
I agree that Denise warming up to her new team was a gradual and well-written process, but what I had the most issue with was the last chapter or so of the novel. Obviously I can't spell it out more clearly without spoiling the ending, but I felt like 90% of her "thawing" process was well-paced, and the last 10% only took a few pages to finish.

I agree that it would make for an interesting television show!

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Post by ReadingGoddess_1 » 18 Jan 2017, 12:18

After reading your review I am definitely adding this to my must read list for 2017! Thank you for this amazing review!

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Post by katiesquilts » 19 Jan 2017, 06:41

ReadingGoddess_1 wrote:After reading your review I am definitely adding this to my must read list for 2017! Thank you for this amazing review!
No problem! Thank you for your kind words as well. :mrgreen:
After you've read it, I'd love to see your review as well!

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Post by tarafarah7 » 19 Feb 2017, 12:33

This book sounds so good! I can't wait to check it out some more! Definitely on my WTR list, but I think it's time to take it down and read it today!

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Post by gali » 22 Feb 2017, 07:46

A secret informant, a possible stalker, three murders that take place at the same time, and a serial killer on the loose? Sounds like a great read despite the poor character development. I like intelligent mysteries and will give it a try. Good job on the review!
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Post by papaya12 » 22 Feb 2017, 09:44

I love mysteries! This book sounds really interesting and I am not in the least opposed to romance in mysteries. I think that Sergeant Stewart's sudden attitude change towards her love interests might put me off a bit. The only deal breaker for me would be the sexual violence and rape which I can't handle. Thank you for this review!

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Post by Genaaa » 22 Feb 2017, 09:55

This actually sounds surprisingly interesting and like a great read. Love the whole thing about the incident that happened years prior. However. it's unfortunate about the whole contradictions with the character's thoughts and actions.

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