The Missing and the Dead

The Missing and the Dead

One mistake can cost you everything…When you catch a twisted killer there should be a reward, right? What Acting Detective Inspector Logan McRae gets instead is a ‘development opportunity’ out in the depths of rural Aberdeenshire. Welcome to divisional policing – catching drug dealers, shop lifters, vandals and the odd escaped farm animal.Then a little girl’s body washes u...

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Title:The Missing and the Dead
Author:Stuart MacBride
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Edition Language:English

The Missing and the Dead Reviews

  • Liz Barnsley

    A new Logan McRae book is always a pleasure to look forward to and an even greater pleasure to read and “The Missing and the Dead” is no exception to this rule – once again I was spilling my coffee whilst laughing at the many hilarious yet heartwarming interactions between Logan and Steel (who is quite possibly my favourite character in Crime Fiction ever, only given a run for her money by Jane Casey’s Derwent), sitting on the edge of my seat whilst awaiting results and in this case, thoroughly

    A new Logan McRae book is always a pleasure to look forward to and an even greater pleasure to read and “The Missing and the Dead” is no exception to this rule – once again I was spilling my coffee whilst laughing at the many hilarious yet heartwarming interactions between Logan and Steel (who is quite possibly my favourite character in Crime Fiction ever, only given a run for her money by Jane Casey’s Derwent), sitting on the edge of my seat whilst awaiting results and in this case, thoroughly loving the nitty gritty policing environment Logan finds himself in.

    In this instalment the case against a serial killer goes horribly wrong after Logan chooses to accept the importance of saving a life over that of procedure and he finds himself in the back of beyond removing cows from the road and attempting to get the drug dealers under control. When a young child’s body washes up, he finds himself both thrust into the centre of and left on the sidelines of another MIT investigation.

    My pure adoration of these stories probably comes from the authors inate ability to create a perfect yin/yang of ironic humour and emotional resonance – whilst also writing a gritty and realistic police procedural. In “The Missing and the Dead” I was fascinated by the many things going on in the background, the things the police on the ground are dealing with, some of them funny some of them not so much, many threads all held together by Logan and co. We have new characters and well loved ones all mixed up here, the whole thing was highly addictive and so terrifically good.

    Its Logan’s 9th full outing already. How did that happen? Anyway I’ve been in it from the start and honestly these just get better and better. I always say when I’ve finished that it was my favourite then Mr MacBride writes another and, well, you get the picture…I’m not sure what is next for Logan but I DO know that I’ll be right there with him all the way. If you like your books to tug at your heartstrings whilst making you laugh out loud and often sit on the edge of your seat, then these are for you. Authentic, eminently readable and top of the game when it comes to British crime fiction.

    Highly Recommended.

  • Lacer

    So I've finished my month long trawl through the Logan McRae series with book 9, The Missing and the Dead (although I still have some McRae and Steel short stories / novellas to read, yay). The Missing and the Dead is different from the previous eight books in that most of it takes place in the small town of Banff, on the Aberdeenshire coast, as Logan goes back into uniform as a duty sergeant. MacBride seems to do a good job at reflecting the changing face of Scottish policing and now all the in

    So I've finished my month long trawl through the Logan McRae series with book 9, The Missing and the Dead (although I still have some McRae and Steel short stories / novellas to read, yay). The Missing and the Dead is different from the previous eight books in that most of it takes place in the small town of Banff, on the Aberdeenshire coast, as Logan goes back into uniform as a duty sergeant. MacBride seems to do a good job at reflecting the changing face of Scottish policing and now all the interesting stuff is taken by Major Investigation Teams, leaving uniform to herd escaped cows and spin druggies. Having read all the previous books back to back, it was quite a culture shock to move from gritty Aberdeen to the more sedate seaside town and with our hero not doing anything that exciting. It felt a bit like a final Die Hard movie where instead of Bruce Willis kicking butt, he got a nice sedate job as a supermarket security guard where nothing much happens. It was nice in a way though, as McRae has been through so much shit in previous books, it was good to see him getting a bit of a break. However from a reader's perspective, someone picking up the book because they like gritty city crime and instead getting something a bit more genteel, it was like "Oh no!!!". However I of course needn't have worried, it was nice getting to know the new characters (once I got over missing Rennie and Biohazard) and the wider variety of cases McRae was working on was more like the earlier books in the series. And of course things do get exciting and McRae in no way gets it easy. There's drug dealers and cash machine robbers but the main storyline is the death of a little girl which thankfully brings DCI Steel into town (I was really missing her) and which links to a backstory that's been slowly simmering throughout the whole series.

    Now I've read the whole series (of the novels, as it stands), I've been thinking again about why I like the McRae series so much and I thought I'd write a list-

    * DCI Steel - I LOVE Steel, at the beginning of the series (when she was just a DI), she leads the 'Screw Up Squad' and I was disappointed when McRae got transferred to her team, away from the constantly sweet eating DI Insch who I much preferred at the time. DI / DCI Steel is loud, sweary and obnoxious and it takes a while to warm to her but she's brilliant, funny and has a heart of gold.

    * The food - a policeman's diet in Aberdeenshire is an unhealthy one but oooh it sounds delicious. Think lots of junk food, particularly the Aberdeen speciality of stovies (a type of lard bread roll), bacon rolls and macaroni cheese and chips, so reading the series made me drool, except for the book Flesh House which was the absolute opposite!

    * The weather - the weather in Aberdeenshire seems to mostly be extreme, it's either bitterly cold and snowing or extremely wet. As a Londoner I'm getting a bit fed up of the samey grey weather you get here all the time, it hasn't (other than the last week) even been raining that much, so reading books where the characters are getting bashed by the elements so much was a nice change.

    * The banter - ooh I hate that word normally but that's what the conversations between McRae and his colleagues actually are and it's a pleasure to read and it really adds to making the characters seem real.

    * The long running storylines - there are several long running storylines running throughout the books. Some of the storyline mentions are really subtle, just maybe a line or two but it really helps make McRae's world seem more complex and real and it helps build up tension for when / if those storylines get resolved.

  • Steve

    3.5 stars

    Stuart MacBride is one of my favorite authors. The characters he has created in this series are simply fantastic: from long-suffering Acting DI Logan McRae, who somehow always ends up on top, to the crusty and disgusting DCI Roberta Steel, along with all of the supporting cast of characters, each with their own personalities and quirkiness. His ability to weave complex stories and plots, complete with local lingo and the banter between the characters is exceptional.

    I’m not sure what to

    3.5 stars

    Stuart MacBride is one of my favorite authors. The characters he has created in this series are simply fantastic: from long-suffering Acting DI Logan McRae, who somehow always ends up on top, to the crusty and disgusting DCI Roberta Steel, along with all of the supporting cast of characters, each with their own personalities and quirkiness. His ability to weave complex stories and plots, complete with local lingo and the banter between the characters is exceptional.

    I’m not sure what to say about this one. There were some significant changes to the characters here, from location and position, and I’m not sure it worked all that well. There was a real lack of tension that was standard in the other books, and this one really meandered for about three-quarters of the book. There was simply too much going on, from the incessant calls from control to check out something suspicious, to the side-story of the ATM smash-and-grabs that really did nothing for the overall story.

    The tension finally arrived in the final quarter of the book, and it felt like the old Logan McRae. If the author could have cut out the extra stuff and further developed the central storyline, it would fit right in with the rest of the series instead of feeling like something cobbled together over a few weekends.

  • Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede

    Book nine in the Logan McRae series and the first book I have read (but not the last).

    There were moments in this book when I felt that I didn't read one book; I was reading at least 2-3 books just made into one. It wasn't just the thickness of the book; it was the fact that there was so much going on that it almost left me feeling exhausted just reading it. There is so much going one beside the case of the little girl that is washed up outside the town Banff; the hunt for drug dealers, shoplifte

    Book nine in the Logan McRae series and the first book I have read (but not the last).

    There were moments in this book when I felt that I didn't read one book; I was reading at least 2-3 books just made into one. It wasn't just the thickness of the book; it was the fact that there was so much going on that it almost left me feeling exhausted just reading it. There is so much going one beside the case of the little girl that is washed up outside the town Banff; the hunt for drug dealers, shoplifters, the trial of a killer and what felt like thousands of other things that the police in rural Aberdeenshire had to deal with.

    But it worked; it worked really well, even though I felt a bit lost in the beginning trying to get to grip with the book's story and its characters. I mean this is book nine, and there is a lot of history I missed since I haven't read the first eight books. But still I got some information now and then that made me slowly get to grip with Logan and also with Roberta Steel. I love her; seriously, she is like a female version of Dalziel (Daziel and Pasco by Reginald Hill). Yes, she is blunt and pigheaded, but she is also funny and quite formidable. Also, there is Logan's cat Cthulhu. Best name ever?

    The book is great. Yes, I felt overwhelmed by the story sometimes, but Stuart Macbride really manages to make all the different parts in this book come together in the end. Usually, I'm used to the police be able to just focus on a case or two, but here, there are always things going on. I mean they have to move cows from roads, get lost old people home safe, stakeouts etc. all the while trying to find a child killer.

    The biggest problem for me with the book was that I had some hard time getting into the book in the beginning. I felt a bit lost when it came to the story and the characters and it took me a while to really feel that I got the rhythm of the book. Also, I hate it when children are the victim and no matter how well written a book is it's a subject I have the most problems reading about.

    But still, despite that I liked the book very much and even though the book was very dark sometimes was there also many humorous moments (I bookmarked many pages when I read my pdf copy) and I have borrowed from the library the first four books in the series and I will read them this summer!

  • Emma

    One of the things I liked about this book were the little vignettes of community policing that interspersed the main investigations, such as the elderly woman convinced her bed was full of rats. These police are busy. This is not a CSI 50 minute wrap up, they work. These detailed, vibrant stories added real veracity to the fiction, it came across as one of the most real police stations i've ever read. I'm pretty sure the colloquialisms were meant to do the same thing and I was both amused and an

    One of the things I liked about this book were the little vignettes of community policing that interspersed the main investigations, such as the elderly woman convinced her bed was full of rats. These police are busy. This is not a CSI 50 minute wrap up, they work. These detailed, vibrant stories added real veracity to the fiction, it came across as one of the most real police stations i've ever read. I'm pretty sure the colloquialisms were meant to do the same thing and I was both amused and annoyed by the ways in which officers answered calls to say they were 'safe to talk', including 'bash on' and 'hammer on'. It became a fun game to see just what strange word was going to be used instead of the much simpler 'yes'.

    As much as this kept me interested for a few hours today, i'm not sure there's enough here to make me come back for more. I got the copy free with my Times subscription so it's the first one in the series that i've read and it didn't make me invested enough in the characters to go back to the beginning.

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