A Tale Etched in Blood and Hard Black Pencil

A Tale Etched in Blood and Hard Black Pencil

Book - 2006
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We could tell you about the bodies. We could tell you their names, where they were found, the state they were in. We could tell you about the suspects too, the evidence, the investigators; join a few dots, even throw you a motive. But what would be the point? You're going to make your own assumptions anyway. After all, you know these people, don't you? You went to school with them. We all did. Granted, that was twenty years ago, but how much does anybody really change? Exactly. So if you really knew them then, you'll already have all the answers. If you really knew them then...

Put on your uniform and line up in an orderly fashion for the funniest and most accurate trip back to the classroom you are likely to read, as well as a murder mystery like nothing that has gone before it. Forget the forensics: only once you've been through school with this painfully believable cast of characters will you be equipped to work out what really happened decades later. Even then, you'll probably guess wrong and be made to stand in the corner.
Publisher: London : Little, Brown, 2006.
ISBN: 9780316730105
Characteristics: 344 p. ;,24 cm.


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Oct 08, 2014

After reading the first few pages, written as spoken in a regional Scottish voice, I was hard pressed to understand most of the dialogue at the beginning. I couldn't get a feel for what to expect until I read further and was exposed to different voices speaking the same language! Written from a variety of early primary school childrens' perspectives and socioeconomic status, it brings back long forgotten childhood memories of how tough it is for kids to decipher an alien culture so different from what they've known at home, a world vastly distinct yet just as brutal as the adult world. As I read further, I could hear each characters heavy accent which at times I was loathe to translate into my version of English. It wasn't until I finished the book that I noticed the glossary of words, slang and terms at the back of the book, each with a witty definition. The author truly has a gift for creating a believable chronicle of the journey from early childhood into adulthood in a rural Scottish town. The murder mystery is just an added bonus because this story is so engrossing. I loved it!

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