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Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Newest Hebridean Thriller A Compelling Page Turner

(Image from Barnes & Noble)

When Ruairidh Macfarlane proposes investing in a small, Hebridean tweed company, his wife balks.  Niamh has business and marketing experience, but still, sinking their life's savings into her husband's dream seems more than a little risky.  Still, the duo manage to make a successful go of it.  When their unique version of Harris tweed catches the attention of some bigwigs in the fashion industry, it seems like everything's finally coming up roses.

Although the business is taking off, Niamh's relationship with her childhood friend turned husband, has gotten a bit rocky.  While on an important business trip in Paris, she accuses Ruairidh of having an affair with Irina Vetrov, a married fashion designer.  Furious, he stomps out of their hotel room.  Moments later, Niamh spies him climbing into Irina's car.  Minutes after that, the vehicle explodes, killing Ruairdh and Irina instantly.  A shocked Niamh soon finds herself the prime suspect in her husband's murder.  Even when she's released and allowed to return to Scotland, she's hounded by police and regarded with suspicion.

While Niamh grapples to come to terms with her husband's violent death, she also searches for answers.  The more she discovers, the more she begins to suspect that the reason for Ruairdh's murder has more to do with local politics than international ones.  When someone makes an attempt on her life, she knows the killer isn't satisfied yet ...

I'm a big fan of Peter May's thrillers, especially those that take place in the moody, broody Hebrides.  May has a keen way of making the locale come alive for me in all its stark, striking glory.  His newest, I'll Keep You Safe, is set mostly off-island, which might explain why I didn't love it as much as some of his others.  Like a true Hebridean, I'm leery of outlanders and prefer an all-local cast.  This novel also seems more graphic to me.  May uses a different format for this novel, which provides an interesting contrast.  Still and all, I'll Keep You Safe remains a tense page turner that kept me riveted from start to finish.  I saw the killer coming, but a couple of the story's twists did catch me by surprise.  So, while this isn't my favorite of May's, I'll still read anything of his, especially if it's set in the always-fascinating Hebrides.

(Readalikes:  Other Hebridean thrillers by Peter May; also books by Ann Cleeves)


If this were a movie, it would be rated:

for language, violence, depictions of illegal drug use, and sexual content

To the FTC, with love:  I received an ARC of I'll Keep You Safe from the generous folks at Quercus.  Thank you!



  1. Oh, good. Glad you read it first and vetted it for me. Ha! I'm planning on reading it soon and have heard good things, though I've also heard it wasn't other people's favorite of his books. Still....

    1. Yeah, it's definitely not my favorite of his. Still, I love Peter May's Hebridean stories, so I'll always give them a chance :)

  2. Sounds like I should start with one of his others first. :)

  3. What are the Hebrides? I guess I can look them up, but I thought I'd comment it too, lol.

    1. Some islands in Scotland. The land/culture is pretty much a character in Peter May's novels. He really makes them come alive! The Google images I've seen of the Hebrides are stunningly gorgeous.

  4. Too bad this one didn't really work out as well for you as the earlier book.


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