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A Change of Circumstance: Discover the million-copy bestselling Simon Serrailler series (Simon Serrailler, 11)

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We see much more of Serailler himself in this book than we did on the first volume, together with his family: his austere mother with her difficult marriage; his sister Cat; Nathan; and even Karin who has been battling with cancer. I have loved this series since the first one -The Various Haunts of Men- and as we’re now at number eleven the characters feel as comfortable as old slippers and like friends in their familiarity. Simon is so intriguing and continues to do so which takes some skill to maintain in a succession of books. He’s a terrific policeman, a good leader, he cares very deeply about his family and is a great uncle to Cat’s children but he’s very complex and currently extremely restless and at a crossroads in his life. I like the on/off relationship with Rachel Wyatt which adds to the realism. Cat and her family always add a good personal touch and she offers Simon the stability and family he needs. Cat’s role in the books has grown over the years and I do enjoy that.

Disclaimer: If this book ever gets published, (during my lifetime) I will happily read it and retract this 'review' for a real one. In the newest installmentofSusan Hill’s electrifying crime series, Simon Serrailler finds himself in devastating new territoryas a sophisticated drug networksets its sights on Lafferton In AChangeofCircumstance , the eleventh book in Susan Hill’s acclaimed crime series featuring the enigmatic detective Simon Serrailler, Hill yet again raises the stakes. Children are being recruited to transfer drugs and money. DCS Simon Serrailler has been called out to investigate a suspected overdose. It just happens to be above a shop where Chinese herbal drugs are sold. Simon's sister Dr Cat, also faces issues in her medical practice. This is a well written story but we seem to spend a lot of time with Cat and her family. This book can be read as a standalone. Biography (part 2)". susan-hill.com. Archived from the original on 29 May 2008 . Retrieved 10 March 2013. {{ cite web}}: CS1 maint: unfit URL ( link)

If You Like Simon Serrailler Books, You’ll Love…

A Change of Circumstance reminds me of the repositioning sails cruise ships do, to move, free of passengers, to another location to begin ferrying people in a different area. Third, Hill usually does a great job sprinkling the story with details regarding what's going on in the personal lives of her main characters. These details were practically non-existent in the first half of this book. Then, unfortunately, when they were added, they were beyond annoying in my opinion. I have such a difficult time with the Simon/Rachel relationship. It gets on my nerves. The reader gets to endure more of, "Oh, I love you." "Me too." "But we mustn't." melodrama. Ugh... Then we throw in the bit part about Cat's son Sam who has apparently turned into a super bully. He refers to his 12 year old sister as a bit**, uses the F word, etc. Cat feels Simon should save the day there though. He should take him aside and give him a good talking to. Then finally, there is a wee bit part about the closing of the hospice, so that it will only be a day service provider. Whatever. I read the previous book in this series (Betrayal of Trust) and enjoyed it enough to read this one when it came into my library as an advance reading copy. This review is based on having only read the last two books in the seven book series. On the Face of It, broadcast 1975; published in Act 1, edited by David Self and Ray Speakman, London, Hutchinson, 1979

All that said, this is still several cuts above the majority of contemporary crime novels. Serrailler is, frankly, often annoying in his approach to his personal life, which is realistic and quite deliberate by Hill and which I rather admire – although there is a hint of more settled things to come. So, although this may not be the finest of the series, it is still very good. EXCERPT: January and Christmas vanished without a trace. The pavements of Starly village were greasy under a day of drizzle and there was an unhealthy mildness in the air.Angela was a 53 year old woman who is very reclusive. She disappears while jogging one foggy morning from a local landmark, The Hill. Her disappearance is taken too seriously and as a result, her employer Carol Ashton demands for a serious police investigation. Actually, I was more interested in the sub-plots and the minor characters. The 'hero' of this series is a complete non-event as a policeman. We find out he loves his mentally challenged sister, and that he likes painting. All fine, but he contributes absolutely nothing to the investigation. Sometimes it's a bit tiresome when the main character does EVERYTHING, but... I first 'discovered' Susan Hill about this time last year when I read The Betrayal of Trust - the sixth in her Simon Serrailler Crime novels. (my review). I was really looking forward to her latest - A Question of Identity - and I wasn't disappointed!

The whole thing is, of course, extremely well written in that way Susan Hill has of crafting elegant, readable prose which never draws attention to itself but carries the reader along beautifully. The story, too, is a timely one and in many ways well done; the stories of the children involved and of the effects on their families are vivid and gripping, for example. However, I did find the policing aspect just a little clunky and preachy; at one point the Chief Constable gives a long and rather sententious speech to his officers, after which, one comments, “Didn’t have the chief down for a rallying-cry-before-battle sort of guy, did you?” Well, no I didn’t – and he was all the better for it. Serrailler himself sounds a bit like a politician with a pre-written answer at times, too, and I’ve come to expect better from Susan Hill. The boy's doctor Dad commits suicide. The 12 year old daughter runs away because her lawyer mom ignores her. We discover when the mom was pregnant with the daughter, all she wanted was a boy- who knows why- and didn't care about the girl. Two years later she had David and he was all she cared about. I’m a big Susan Hill fan; I love her creepy, shiver-inducing, but never gory, horror stories. I also love crime fiction, so many years ago I read an earlier book in her Simon Serrailler series. It was good; I enjoyed it. So I was very disappointed when A Change of Circumstance failed to live up to my expectations. In Lafferton Simon Serailler is dealing with the aftermath and emotional fall-out of the events of The Various Haunts of Men when a schoolboy is abducted from outside his home. At the same time, Simon's disabled sister is hovering between life and death; and a recently-released criminal is looking for a way to create a decent life for himself after prison.Debbie is a 20 year old girl suffering from depression, overweight and acne. She began feeling better after visiting a spiritual leader named Dava and had started taking morning walks on The Hill. She also disappears from the same location one morning while jogging. Finally, this is another absorbing and enjoyable addition to the series. It’s well written and easy to read. Although this is the eleventh it can easily be read as a stand-alone but I do recommend the series.

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