The Birdwatcher

The Birdwatcher

A Novel

Book - 2017
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Police Sergeant William South has a good reason to shy away from murder investigations: he is a murderer himself.
**Longlisted for the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year
A methodical, diligent, and exceptionally bright detective, South is an avid birdwatcher and trusted figure in his small town on the rugged Kentish coast. He also lives with the deeply buried secret that, as a child in Northern Ireland, he may have killed a man. When a fellow birdwatcher is found murdered in his remote home, South's world flips.
The culprit seems to be a drifter from South's childhood; the victim was the only person connecting South to his early crime; and a troubled, vivacious new female sergeant has been relocated from London and assigned to work with South. As our hero investigates, he must work ever-harder to keep his own connections to the victim, and his past, a secret.
The Birdwatcher is British crime fiction at its finest; a stirring portrait of flawed, vulnerable investigators; a meticulously constructed mystery; and a primal story of fear, loyalty and vengeance.
Publisher: New York :, Mulholland Books, Little, Brown and Company,, 2017.
Edition: First North American edition.
Copyright Date: ©2016
ISBN: 9780316316248
Branch Call Number: MYSTERY Shaw William
Characteristics: 329 pages ;,25 cm


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May 22, 2019

What a pleasant surprise! First heard about this author in a book by Peter Robinson who had made reference to this being a book enjoyed by one of his (Robinson) characters. This isn't quite so "birdy" as Burrows but there were enough ornithological references to learn a bit about the world of birding but it wasn't a focal point.

The main character has enough flaws to keep him interesting but not so many flaws as to become a unbelievable buffoon. A well crafted story and a treat to read. Looking forward to a sequel, if there will be one.

Jun 14, 2018

An author I'd never heard of before. I took a chance and enjoyed this atmospheric mystery/ police procedural and I'm looking forward to the next in the series. Interesting characters and plot. Highly enjoyed.

JessicaGma May 15, 2018

It was a good murder mystery and procedural. Again, I didn't expect much from the book, and got sucked in. It does sort of leave you hanging a bit at the end, so it remains to be seen if the character will reappear in other books.

KHaney Aug 10, 2017

Had a bad day, and needed to escape into a book, picked this one up yesterday and headed out around the pool with it. Bad day receded...time went on...skipped dinner ...kept reading, only looked up when I finished the book to immediately put another of William Shaw's books on hold! So happy when I discover a great new author. Loved the somewhat tormented, but honourable main character, would love to see him again in another book, but not too sure that will happen.

Jul 22, 2017

Now I know what all the fuss was about. I feel like I'm the last person on the planet to read this & wish I'd got to it sooner. Great read, devoured it in a day. Highly recommend this, especially if you're a fan of Ann Cleeves, Jim Kelly, Stuart Neville and/or Anthony Quinn.


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