The Blood-dimmed Tide

The Blood-dimmed Tide

Book - 2005
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Baker & Taylor
His quiet family life in rural 1932 England shattered by the brutal murder of a young village girl, former inspector John Madden teams up with former Scotland Yard colleagues, the British secret service, and the German police in an investigation that forces them to draw on the burgeoning science of criminal psychology. By the author of River of Darkness. 40,000 first printing.

Blackwell North Amer
In The Blood-Dimmed Tide, Rennie Airth brings back his beloved main character, Inspector John Madden, in a new tale of murder. Filled with historical detail, this novel is not only a mystery; it is also a haunting portrait of the social struggles in post-World War I England and the unrest throughout Europe as Hitler begins his rise to power.
It is 1932, and former Inspector John Madden has retired from Scotland Yard. He leads a quiet life in rural England with his wife and children - until their idyll is shattered when Madden comes across the body of a young village girl, savagely murdered, in the woods near his home. The crime catapults Madden back into the role of detective, despite his wife Helen's misgivings, as he realizes that this horrific crime may have implications that reach far beyond the English countryside. Along with his former colleagues, Madden soon finds himself enlisting the help of the British Secret Service and the German police. Together they use the burgeoning science of criminal psychology in order to enter the twisted mind of a cunning, sophisticated murderer - but can Madden find him in time to prevent him from killing again?

& Taylor

His quiet family life in rural 1932 England shattered by the brutal murder of a young village girl, former inspector John Madden teams up with former Scotland Yard colleagues, the British secret service, and the German police to investigate.

Publisher: New York : Viking, 2005
Edition: 1st American ed
ISBN: 9780670899968
Characteristics: 340 p. ; 24 cm


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Aug 05, 2017

The second John Madden book recounts murders just as appalling as the first book. It's not so much a "who-dunnit" as a "how'd-they-catch-em." John is no longer a policeman so is not the focus of the story, although he becomes more involved as the investigation proceeds. I thought this book could have used a stricter editor; it's longer than need be, and there were pages of exposition about characters who were really peripheral at best that should have been trimmed. Also, although I don't remember this from the first book, the writer contorts time, starting out a chapter detailing events then going back a little in time to fill in details. It was needlessly confusing and irritating after a while. Still, I managed to finish it.

Aug 04, 2017

Second John Madden. Kept me turning pages long into the night.

Cdnbookworm Jul 12, 2013

This novel is part of the John Madden mystery series. I have read her earlier book River of Darkness. Madden has left Scotland Yard to live the life of a farmer, and his wife Helen guards him from police work as much as she can. The year is 1932, and coming home one day, John and Helen drive through a nearby village where they can see something is happening. They stop to see if they can be of assistance, and find the village is searching for a missing girl. John joins in the search and is the one to discover the body. When another body is found, Scotland Yard is called in, and Madden is drawn into the case despite Helen's protection.
Evidence leads to the discovery of similar cases on the Continent and the search is on for a cold-blooded man fixated on young girls. This story involves many elements. The lives of tramps, on the road for a variety of reasons. Economic straits of the Great Depression causing many to lose their homes and scramble to find work to support their families. Men who survived the war, but never really recovered from it, living with what we would now call PTSD. The trend by those in charge to protect their own, and believe the end justifies the means. The growing political situation in Europe with the rise of the Nazis. All this makes for a great story that is more than just a good mystery.

Mar 24, 2011

I am new to Rennie Airth's writing and found it confusing and not well edited. I had a hard time figuring out who the main character was. Some scenes had multiple points of view which is not usually done. Also, the "good" guys were really good and the "bad" guy was really horrid. The attempts at explaining criminal psychology were lame and the understanding of early 20th century psychiatry was incorrect.

Oct 05, 2010

For the second time that we catch up with John Madden we find him retired and living the country life with his charming doctor wife. He is now involved in the case of a child murder at a time when he is raising his own children. Soon he becomes embroiled in a case that is so baffling that he needs to go back to the beginning to find the killer.


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