Big Sky

Big Sky 1

by Kate Atkinson

Paperback / softback Publication Date: 18/06/2019

5/5 Rating 1 Reviews
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A brilliant new literary crime novel from number one bestseller Kate Atkinson

Jackson Brodie has relocated to a quiet seaside village in North Yorkshire, in the occasional company of his recalcitrant teenage son Nathan and ageing Labrador Dido, both at the discretion of his former partner Julia. It’s a picturesque setting, but there’s something darker lurking behind the scenes.

Jackson’s current job, gathering proof of an unfaithful husband for his suspicious wife, seems straightforward, but a chance encounter with a desperate man on a crumbling cliff leads him into a sinister network - and back into the path of someone from his past. Old secrets and new lies intersect in this breathtaking new novel, both sharply funny and achingly sad, by one of the most dazzling and surprising writers at work today.

ISBN:
9780857526113
9780857526113
Category:
Classic crime
Format:
Paperback / softback
Publication Date:
18-06-2019
Publisher:
Transworld Publishers Ltd
Country of origin:
United Kingdom
Pages:
368
Dimensions (mm):
234x153x27mm
Weight:
0.44kg

"Big Sky is laced with Atkinson's sharp, dry humour, and one of the joys of the Brodie novels has always been that they are so funny."
Stephanie Merritt, Observer

"I romped through it: as ever, the plotting is clever and complex, it's full of the dry wit Atkinson is so good at and it's an absorbing mystery."
Good Housekeeping

"Jackson Brodie is back and how we’ve missed him...you're in for a treat."
Red

"A masterclass in what can be done with crime fiction, brilliantly using the form to expose what Atkinson bleakly describes as 'one more battle in the war against women'."
Sunday Times

"Atkinson brings back her much-loved PI Jackson Brodie for a tightly plotted tale...the real mystery here is the human heart, with Atkinson serving up an acute and believable look at the state of Britain today."
I

Kate Atkinson

Kate Atkinson won the Whitbread (now Costa) Book of the Year prize with her first novel, Behind the Scenes at the Museum. Her four bestselling novels featuring former detective Jackson Brodie became the BBC television series Case Histories, starring Jason Isaacs.

Her 2013 novel Life After Life won the South Bank Sky Arts Literature Prize, was shortlisted for the Women’s Prize, voted Book of the Year for the independent booksellers associations on both sides of the Atlantic. It also won the Costa Novel Award, as did her new novel A God in Ruins (2015).

She was appointed MBE in the 2011 Queen’s Birthday Honours List, and was voted Waterstones UK Author of the Year at the 2013 Specsavers National Book Awards.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating

5 / 5 (1 Ratings)
  • Atkinson never disappoints

    by on

    “Jackson knew something was dodgy about Barclay Jack, but couldn’t get the knowledge to rise up from the seabed of his memory – a dismal place that was littered with the rusting wreckage and detritus of his brain cells.”

    Big Sky is the fifth book in the popular Jackson Brodie series by British author, Kate Atkinson. Running Brodie Investigations from a virtual office has allowed Jackson to rent a cottage in East Yorkshire, near enough to Julia’s filming location for him to spend time with their thirteen-year-old son, Nathan, during his school vacation. And hopefully to instill some knowledge, manners and self-discipline. But on an outing, they witness what appears to be the abduction of a young teen. A find on the beach the following morning cements Jackson’s conviction of foul play, but the local police are uninterested.

    But Jackson is already occupied with the usual cases involving adulterous spouses, as well as a bit of entrapment and an interesting exercise in reverse online grooming. And then a trophy wife engages him to find out who is having her followed. Crystal Holroyd doesn’t believe it’s her husband, but isn’t about to share another possible source (her murky past) with Jackson. Soon, the turns in this case are enough to distract him from a missing teen.

    Meanwhile, DC Reggie Chase and her associate, DC Ronnie Dibicki have been assigned to review a paedophile case from the eighties involving two local men. With the surviving offender due for early release, Chase and Dibicki are re-examining the files and questioning probable witnesses and associates regarding the possible participation of a third man.

    Atkinson’s plot topical and interesting, featuring human trafficking, paedophiles, sex slavery and kidnapping, and has plenty of turns to keep the reader engrossed. As well as saving several lives, Jackson uses the lyrics of country songs as counselling aid, and to disarm a gunman using TV cop show dialogue, before helping a pregnant prospective bride to leave her groom at the altar.

    But Atkinson’s strength is her characters and some of their inner monologues are an absolute joy, filled with dry British (and often very black) humour and understatement. Jackson’s narrative is peppered with Julia’s (previously delivered or else anticipated, but inevitably critical) comments.

    There is humour, too, in certain situations and the snappy dialogue, with its tangents and asides, including several laugh-out-loud moments. Atkinson manages to include a bunch of terrible cheese jokes, pun-based names for drag queens, and some truly awful off-colour cabaret-type jokes, as well as ferociously-protective mother with martial arts skills, and Primark scarf that is instrumental in two deaths.

    Once again, Atkinson carefully builds up her characters until the reader is invested in them and really cares about their fate. Of those characters, Vince initially seems a bit of a sad loser, but which way will he jump when push comes to shove? Crystal and Harry, though, are undeniable gold, and the team of Reggie and Ronnie are pure delight. Fans of the series will remember Reggie Chase from When Will There Be Good News.

    Atkinson has a wonderful way with words and some of her passages are superbly evocative and vividly descriptive. While it is not essential to have read the earlier books of this series, this book does contain spoilers for earlier books, so it doesn’t hurt to read them in order. As usual, Atkinson provides a brilliant read and fans will be pleased to know that the ending leaves open the possibility of more Jackson Brodie.
    This unbiased review is from an uncorrected proof copy provided by Penguin Random House Australia