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“Reginald Hill is quite simply one of the best at work today.” —Boston Globe   There is no end to the praise mystery writer Reginald Hill has already earned for his British police procedurals featuring Chief Inspector Peter Pascoe and Detective Superintendent “Fat Andy” Dalziel. Having recently bested Harlan Coben, Val McDermid, Michael Connelly, and James Patterson for the C “Reginald Hill is quite simply one of the best at work today.” —Boston Globe   There is no end to the praise mystery writer Reginald Hill has already earned for his British police procedurals featuring Chief Inspector Peter Pascoe and Detective Superintendent “Fat Andy” Dalziel. Having recently bested Harlan Coben, Val McDermid, Michael Connelly, and James Patterson for the Crime Writers Association’s Mystery and Thriller People’s Choice Dagger, the master returns with The Price of Butcher’s Meat—as a recuperating Andy Dalziel (following his close brush with mortality in Death Comes for the Fat Man) gets involved in the murderous politics of a not-so-peaceful seaside community. The Price of Butcher’s Meat is more “great stuff from one of the greats, and a true must for fans of British crime” (Denver Rocky Mountain News).


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“Reginald Hill is quite simply one of the best at work today.” —Boston Globe   There is no end to the praise mystery writer Reginald Hill has already earned for his British police procedurals featuring Chief Inspector Peter Pascoe and Detective Superintendent “Fat Andy” Dalziel. Having recently bested Harlan Coben, Val McDermid, Michael Connelly, and James Patterson for the C “Reginald Hill is quite simply one of the best at work today.” —Boston Globe   There is no end to the praise mystery writer Reginald Hill has already earned for his British police procedurals featuring Chief Inspector Peter Pascoe and Detective Superintendent “Fat Andy” Dalziel. Having recently bested Harlan Coben, Val McDermid, Michael Connelly, and James Patterson for the Crime Writers Association’s Mystery and Thriller People’s Choice Dagger, the master returns with The Price of Butcher’s Meat—as a recuperating Andy Dalziel (following his close brush with mortality in Death Comes for the Fat Man) gets involved in the murderous politics of a not-so-peaceful seaside community. The Price of Butcher’s Meat is more “great stuff from one of the greats, and a true must for fans of British crime” (Denver Rocky Mountain News).

30 review for The Price of Butcher's Meat

  1. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    To begin with, I have one confession and one warning. Reginald Hill is my absolute favourite author. I could read his shopping list and rave about it, so I have no pretence here of objectivity. Now the warning. If you have yet to read Reginald Hill’s DEATH OF DALZIEL (published in the U.S.A. under the title Death Comes for the Fat Man) then stop right now. Don’t read any further, because it is impossible to write a review of A CURE FOR ALL DISEASES without creating a spoiler for Hill’s previous D To begin with, I have one confession and one warning. Reginald Hill is my absolute favourite author. I could read his shopping list and rave about it, so I have no pretence here of objectivity. Now the warning. If you have yet to read Reginald Hill’s DEATH OF DALZIEL (published in the U.S.A. under the title Death Comes for the Fat Man) then stop right now. Don’t read any further, because it is impossible to write a review of A CURE FOR ALL DISEASES without creating a spoiler for Hill’s previous Dalziel and Pascoe novel. Book Review: In the dedication of the book Reginald Hill wrote in part: To Janeites everywhere. If you’ve read Jane Austen you’ll quickly discover why. If you haven’t (like me) then it will sail over your head and it doesn’t really matter anyway. I won’t give away the reason for the dedication. It will be an extra layer for Austen fans. The story is told from the point of view of a number of characters. First and foremost is Dalziel’s conversations with “Mildred”. Charlotte’s perspective is told in the form of long, chatty (and poorly spelled) emails to her sister in Africa. Various members of the investigation team; Pascoe, Wield, Novello and Bowler also get a look-in from their perspectives. A CURE FOR ALL DISEASES also sees a shift in the dynamics of the relationship between Dalziel and Pascoe. Pascoe feels he is ready to spread his wings without Dalziel looking over his shoulder. With Pascoe in charge, Sergeant Wield is seeing a change in him. He thinks Pascoe is starting to exhibit traits that are decidedly Dalzielesque! There are some who found the emails a distraction with the poor spelling and grammar. I didn’t. I enjoyed the quirkiness of them. A CURE FOR ALL DISEASES is Reginald Hill’s twenty-third Dalziel and Pascoe novel and it is a testimony to his skill as a writer that number twenty-three is as fresh and compelling as all his others.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jill Hutchinson

    One of my favorite British mystery series is Dalziel and Pascoe and this one does not disappoint. In the book immediately preceding this one, Dalziel is almost killed by a terrorist bomb. But it appears nothing can kill Fat Andy, so this book begins as he is a patient in a rehabilitation center, recovering from his injuries. The author uses a little different format for this series entry as it is written in the form of e-mails and taped conversations, interspersed with regular narrative. At firs One of my favorite British mystery series is Dalziel and Pascoe and this one does not disappoint. In the book immediately preceding this one, Dalziel is almost killed by a terrorist bomb. But it appears nothing can kill Fat Andy, so this book begins as he is a patient in a rehabilitation center, recovering from his injuries. The author uses a little different format for this series entry as it is written in the form of e-mails and taped conversations, interspersed with regular narrative. At first I was put off by this approach but soon got into the rhythm and it was not a problem. The story centers around the grotesque murder of a local "lady of the manor" who is found on the spit in a barbecue pit, slowly being roasted. This is soon followed by two other murders which seem to be connected but no motive is apparent. Pascoe and his team are investigating and nothing can keep Fat Andy from putting in his two cents since the murder took place on the grounds of the rehab clinic where he is a patient. There is only one problem with this book........the last chapter. It adds a twist to an already complex story and could have been omitted. It was just one fact too many and did nothing to change the outcome of the investigation. Otherwise the author delivers another block buster in a long and popular series.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Koeeoaddi

    3.5 Part epistolary novel [in emails] owing more to Agatha Christie than to Jane Austen, with far too many characters and an entertaing, convoluted plot. Had Hill divided the cast in half and then in half again, we could have come to know the characters [BIG SPOILER] (view spoiler)[ and not had that 'huh' moment at the end when the killer that we hardly know at all is revealed. (hide spoiler)] In spite of its surplus of potential culprits and creaky resolution, I enjoyed the heck out of this book 3.5 Part epistolary novel [in emails] owing more to Agatha Christie than to Jane Austen, with far too many characters and an entertaing, convoluted plot. Had Hill divided the cast in half and then in half again, we could have come to know the characters [BIG SPOILER] (view spoiler)[ and not had that 'huh' moment at the end when the killer that we hardly know at all is revealed. (hide spoiler)] In spite of its surplus of potential culprits and creaky resolution, I enjoyed the heck out of this book and will be shelving all the Pascoe/Dalziel novels on my 'characters I love' shelf.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Drka

    Reginald Hill is one of favourite mystery writers, superb characterisation, great plots and prose that is a joy to read. But I could not finish this book and it was because of the epistolary style of the first 200 pages or so. It nearly drove me to distraction. After years of grading student papers my brain just could not ignore the spelling mistakes, excessive use of em rules, appalling punctuation etc etc in the emails from the Charlie character. It gave me a headache and I eventually gave up Reginald Hill is one of favourite mystery writers, superb characterisation, great plots and prose that is a joy to read. But I could not finish this book and it was because of the epistolary style of the first 200 pages or so. It nearly drove me to distraction. After years of grading student papers my brain just could not ignore the spelling mistakes, excessive use of em rules, appalling punctuation etc etc in the emails from the Charlie character. It gave me a headache and I eventually gave up and skipped the entire section. I tried to read the rest of the book but it had lost me, I had no interest in the plot, characters or anything else so abandoned it. For any first time reader of this wonderful series, please don’t give up on Dalziel and Pascoe if you ave tried to read this book and disliked the style. Try another one!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Liz Howell

    Slow start almost gave up

  6. 5 out of 5

    Julia

    The author has taken the last unfinished novel of Jane Austen (Sandition) and set it in 21st century England. Instead of local gentry, sea cures and bathing machines, we find local gentry and development and planning to make "Sandytown" the capital of the healthy holiday. Hill follows Austen conventions to a point - the heroine finds true love, but the main business of the novel is murder and its investigation by Daziel and Pascoe. The novel contains its usual facsinating insights into character The author has taken the last unfinished novel of Jane Austen (Sandition) and set it in 21st century England. Instead of local gentry, sea cures and bathing machines, we find local gentry and development and planning to make "Sandytown" the capital of the healthy holiday. Hill follows Austen conventions to a point - the heroine finds true love, but the main business of the novel is murder and its investigation by Daziel and Pascoe. The novel contains its usual facsinating insights into character and motivation, and once again creates an interesting portrait of modern Yorkshire. The playing with Jane Austen's work is just icing on a very delicious cake.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    Just finished this, and, well, as usual I'm elated at having found another good Dalziel/Pascoe and sad that this one's over. Unlike some writers (coughMarthaGrimescough), Hill hasn't gotten stale. He's even changed his writing style and pacing, so the books aren't formulaic. This one is almost epistolary (e-mail and digital recordings rather than actual letters) and while I suspected the actual culprit, it wasn't until the end that I knew... or did I? This isn't a clean/tidy solution case, it's Just finished this, and, well, as usual I'm elated at having found another good Dalziel/Pascoe and sad that this one's over. Unlike some writers (coughMarthaGrimescough), Hill hasn't gotten stale. He's even changed his writing style and pacing, so the books aren't formulaic. This one is almost epistolary (e-mail and digital recordings rather than actual letters) and while I suspected the actual culprit, it wasn't until the end that I knew... or did I? This isn't a clean/tidy solution case, it's got loose ends. Knowing Hill, they may never be wrapped up.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Leslie Jem

    This book picks up where Death come for the Fat Man left off. I enjoyed the variety of ways the story unfolded; as emails, transcripts of recordings, and basic narrative. There were lots of twists and turns, and they were resolved satisfactorily in the end. Reginald Hill is a great writer.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Paul Patterson

    This is my night read from 11:30PM - around 1:00AM. I often wake up at three and do some owl reading as well. The book suits this light but engaging and wonderful peek into English mystery.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Debbie

    While Dalziel is recuperating from injuries received in the previous series entry, he happens upon a series of murders in the sea-side town of Sandytown. The starting point of this book is the unfinished novel Sanditon by Jane Austen. Our ingenue is a somewhat worldly 21st century girl called Charlie. She reports her escapades in Sandytown in emails to her sister, working as a nurse in Africa. Alternately, Dalziel is recording his experiences and impressions on a personal recorder. After the fir While Dalziel is recuperating from injuries received in the previous series entry, he happens upon a series of murders in the sea-side town of Sandytown. The starting point of this book is the unfinished novel Sanditon by Jane Austen. Our ingenue is a somewhat worldly 21st century girl called Charlie. She reports her escapades in Sandytown in emails to her sister, working as a nurse in Africa. Alternately, Dalziel is recording his experiences and impressions on a personal recorder. After the first murder, one third of the way into the narrative, the book adds a more traditional third person narration. The emails are breezy, gossipy, and ungrammatical. Dalziel's take is characteristically chauvinistic and bawdy. But despite his lack of niceties, Dalziel has a pretty good take on everyone, including Charlie, whom he grows to quite admire. An old frenemy makes an appearance and contributes greatly to the plot and Charlie's emails also contribute to the investigation. The police, including Dalziel, engage in some legally questionable recording of witnesses. I've not read much of this series, and not for a long time, but I was quite taken with it.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Tory Wagner

    This is a classic British mystery series featuring Detective Superintendent Andy Dalziel and Chief Inspector Peter Pascoe. Since this is #23 in the series, their relationship is well established and fans of this series must gobble up each new book. In this one, a murder is committed near a clinic in which Dalziel is recuperating from an injury and he gets pulled into the case despite Pascoe's desire to solve the mystery himself. Part of the story is told in emails that a young woman who is visit This is a classic British mystery series featuring Detective Superintendent Andy Dalziel and Chief Inspector Peter Pascoe. Since this is #23 in the series, their relationship is well established and fans of this series must gobble up each new book. In this one, a murder is committed near a clinic in which Dalziel is recuperating from an injury and he gets pulled into the case despite Pascoe's desire to solve the mystery himself. Part of the story is told in emails that a young woman who is visiting the area sends to her sister and other parts are told by Dalziel in taped messages that his surgeon has recommended as a way to recover from his coma. Anyone who enjoys a good British mystery, will like this series.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Owlsinger

    Good story, but the format took getting used to; alternating between a character's emails to her sister, and Dalziel's ravings into a voice recorder. It eventually returns to a normal narrative, with occasional lapses serving as glosses for off-page action. One book left in the series, as far as I can tell, and it's still hard to tell which side Franny Roote is playing for.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Kate

    A bit long, but certainly not slow, Hill's modern murder mystery take on Austen's Sanditon takes liberties but doesn't mock the original, even if the best parts for me were at the very beginning. The character of Charley and her gossipy emails to her sister were pure reading joy, likewise the lovely Tom Parker and his daughter Minnie. Some plot bits were a stretch and I'd have enjoyed much more Diana Parker but the beauty and humor made this a four-star book. I'm not sure if I'll try out the res A bit long, but certainly not slow, Hill's modern murder mystery take on Austen's Sanditon takes liberties but doesn't mock the original, even if the best parts for me were at the very beginning. The character of Charley and her gossipy emails to her sister were pure reading joy, likewise the lovely Tom Parker and his daughter Minnie. Some plot bits were a stretch and I'd have enjoyed much more Diana Parker but the beauty and humor made this a four-star book. I'm not sure if I'll try out the rest of the series or not.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Kathryn

    Fooled by a different cover.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Nick

    This one was a real challenge for me to stay up with the characters and the plot lines. Could be my concentration level was not up to snuff, but I found it hard to read, even compared to the other Dalziel (Dale) and Pascoe books.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Judy

    I seem to be giving a lot of books a 4 star rating lately. Maybe I'm feeling generous, maybe I've just been reading a lot of good books. If you have never read a Reginald Hill book, don't start with this one. This is the 23rd book in the series and relationships develop along the way and there is quite a lot of references to earlier books. The other problem with the book (discounting the fact that it's 500 pages long) is that about half of the book is told through a major character emailing her I seem to be giving a lot of books a 4 star rating lately. Maybe I'm feeling generous, maybe I've just been reading a lot of good books. If you have never read a Reginald Hill book, don't start with this one. This is the 23rd book in the series and relationships develop along the way and there is quite a lot of references to earlier books. The other problem with the book (discounting the fact that it's 500 pages long) is that about half of the book is told through a major character emailing her sister in Africa and giving the sister her view of reality--which changes, and Detective Superintendent Andy Dalziel speaking into a small recording device that his doctor gave him to record his feelings and impressions. Unless you were a fan of the series, those conceits might have made continuity an issue. But fan that I am, I loved the book and it had just enough twists and turns to satisfy.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Shannon

    After about 50 pages, I couldn't get into this book and didn't see myself getting into it within another 50 pages or so (100 pages being my normal predictor of whether I'll be able to finish a book or not). The writing style just really bugged me, particularly the chapters that were written in email format. Those chapters were written in a real life kind of way, complete with misspellings, incomplete sentences, random abbreviations, and in general, the way that a lot of people talk, I suppose. B After about 50 pages, I couldn't get into this book and didn't see myself getting into it within another 50 pages or so (100 pages being my normal predictor of whether I'll be able to finish a book or not). The writing style just really bugged me, particularly the chapters that were written in email format. Those chapters were written in a real life kind of way, complete with misspellings, incomplete sentences, random abbreviations, and in general, the way that a lot of people talk, I suppose. But I can't stand reading emails (or any document, for that matter) with misspellings and it really irritates me when people use text-speak outside of text messages, so this book just left me frustrated and wondering why I was even bothering. I didn't finish it.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    This episode in the Dalziel and Pascoe series is a clever update of an ancient plot. Lady Daphne Denham is so annoying that when she turns up dead, it is hard to find anyone who doesn’t have a motive. The murder takes place in the burgeoning health resort of Sandytown where Det. Supt. Dalziel is recovering from the wounds acquired in a terrorist attack in the previous book. The psychologist in charge of his case has given him a digital recorder and part of the fun of the novel is hearing events This episode in the Dalziel and Pascoe series is a clever update of an ancient plot. Lady Daphne Denham is so annoying that when she turns up dead, it is hard to find anyone who doesn’t have a motive. The murder takes place in the burgeoning health resort of Sandytown where Det. Supt. Dalziel is recovering from the wounds acquired in a terrorist attack in the previous book. The psychologist in charge of his case has given him a digital recorder and part of the fun of the novel is hearing events in his cantankerous voice instead of the usual third person authorial. Another voice in the form of a stream of e-mails from Charlotte, a visitor in town who doesn’t bother with spellcheck, adds up to a witty, contemporary take on a classic form.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    If you're looking for a light read that you can pick up at any time, this is a good choice. If you're looking for an intelligent and fascinating storyline that keeps you on the edge of your seat, keep looking. Hill tries to utilize a disjointed, postmodern style of writing to tell the story from the point of view of Charlotte. This style can be used very effectively (see Douglas Coupland's JPod), but can also be obnoxious (see this text). Never before have I read a paragraph containing nearly tw If you're looking for a light read that you can pick up at any time, this is a good choice. If you're looking for an intelligent and fascinating storyline that keeps you on the edge of your seat, keep looking. Hill tries to utilize a disjointed, postmodern style of writing to tell the story from the point of view of Charlotte. This style can be used very effectively (see Douglas Coupland's JPod), but can also be obnoxious (see this text). Never before have I read a paragraph containing nearly twenty en dashes. On the whole, A Cure for all Diseases is a fun, lighthearted read but doesn't prove particularily memorable.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    This was a slow starter and it is part of a series of books. It did get rather good toward the end as the pace picked up. HOWEVER, there were TOO many twists and turns of plot, prompting me to flip frantically back and forth between pages to see which character I had missed at a crucial placement. Turns out that three with the same last name was just too much, it all blurs at that bit. I may read another by this author, but not for a while. I enjoy a slower revelation, rather than everything all This was a slow starter and it is part of a series of books. It did get rather good toward the end as the pace picked up. HOWEVER, there were TOO many twists and turns of plot, prompting me to flip frantically back and forth between pages to see which character I had missed at a crucial placement. Turns out that three with the same last name was just too much, it all blurs at that bit. I may read another by this author, but not for a while. I enjoy a slower revelation, rather than everything all thrown in my face on the very last pages. The characters were likable and not too perfect, so as a series, I may visit these people again.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Richard

    For parts of the book, the author uses the literary contrivance of showing his readers e-mail messages sent from a young lady in Yorkshire to her sister who is working as a nurse in Africa. It reads like Young Adult romance fiction with a measure of gossip. I found it unappealing. No crime is committed until 165 pages into a 477-page book. I almost quit reading the story before I got that far. It was very dull and boring. The ending is unsatisfying. The author seems to be experimenting with diffe For parts of the book, the author uses the literary contrivance of showing his readers e-mail messages sent from a young lady in Yorkshire to her sister who is working as a nurse in Africa. It reads like Young Adult romance fiction with a measure of gossip. I found it unappealing. No crime is committed until 165 pages into a 477-page book. I almost quit reading the story before I got that far. It was very dull and boring. The ending is unsatisfying. The author seems to be experimenting with different literary devices, and it is unfair to readers to treat them as guinea pigs. I would not recommend this book.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Kate

    This was fine, not nearly as good as his best. I literally skipped the first 160 pages or so (up til the second part) because the fonts types and stylized email writing were nearly impossible to read. You can get away with bad grammer and punctuation in an email because they are short. Ten page 'emails' with no punctuation are nearly unreadable and certainly annoying. Skipping this many pages did not affect my ability to read the rest of the mystery, which I feel backs me up on my assertion that This was fine, not nearly as good as his best. I literally skipped the first 160 pages or so (up til the second part) because the fonts types and stylized email writing were nearly impossible to read. You can get away with bad grammer and punctuation in an email because they are short. Ten page 'emails' with no punctuation are nearly unreadable and certainly annoying. Skipping this many pages did not affect my ability to read the rest of the mystery, which I feel backs me up on my assertion that R.H. needs a good editor....

  23. 5 out of 5

    Katherine Leigh

    Reginald Hill wrote my favorite police procedurals. His enduring, 40 year spanning Dalziel and Pascoe series, of which this novel is one, was amazing. This is book is up to his usual standard. If you haven't read any of them, you might want to pick up the first one, "A Clubbable Woman." His novels about Joe Sixsmith, private detective are awesome too. It's a great shame that Reginald Hill died in 2012.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Nadine Wiseman

    Dalziel returns from the dead to insert himself, not strictly speaking as a detective, but an irascible convalescent bystander, into Pascoe's investigation. With a Christie-esque set of characters at a barbecue where the victim is offed, and the reappearance of one of Andy's favourite bête noires, this brilliant series continues with the same earthy Yorkshire humour as ever.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Kat

    I love Reginald Hill, despite the fact that he's been becoming more and more fanciful lately. But still. This one is OK, but way too long (you get a sense that he really likes his characters and has a hard time giving them up). The mystery is not particularly compelling, but OK.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Teresa

    Of the many Reginald Hill books I have read this is my least favorite. Dalziel is even more crude in his thoughts than his spoken word if such can be imagined. The first time reader would find Pascoe colorless.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Millicent

    One of the best in this excellent series. Just don't start with this one if you're new to Dalziel & Pascoe -- continuation of a long running backstory and relationship is a big part of what makes this book so enjoyable. One of the best in this excellent series. Just don't start with this one if you're new to Dalziel & Pascoe -- continuation of a long running backstory and relationship is a big part of what makes this book so enjoyable.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Mark Nutting

    Re-reading after having just finished ‘Sanditon’ made me appreciate just how clever this book is. Jane Austen’s unfinished novel transformed into a murder mystery? Sounds unlikely, but it works.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Rita

    This is based on the Jane Austin unfinished novel Sanditon. It is a masterpiece, mixing the Austin characters with the Dalziel/Pascoe ones and with an unusual twisty ending. I loved it.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Alison C

    While Superintendent Andy Dalziel is convalescing at a health resort in coastal Sandytown, DCI Peter Pascoe is in charge, and he’s finding that he likes that role quite a bit. When one of the primary movers and shakers in Sandytown is strangled and gruesomely roasted, Pascoe has the opportunity to shine; but Dalziel, starting to feel better, wants to get in on the action too, with potentially disastrous results…. I don’t want to say much about the plot of "A Cure for All Diseases," the 23rd entr While Superintendent Andy Dalziel is convalescing at a health resort in coastal Sandytown, DCI Peter Pascoe is in charge, and he’s finding that he likes that role quite a bit. When one of the primary movers and shakers in Sandytown is strangled and gruesomely roasted, Pascoe has the opportunity to shine; but Dalziel, starting to feel better, wants to get in on the action too, with potentially disastrous results…. I don’t want to say much about the plot of "A Cure for All Diseases," the 23rd entry in Mr. Hill’s series, but there are at least half a dozen suspects, all of whom have good reason to murder the victim, and each in turn gets a chance to confess, either to Dalziel or to Pascoe. In the end, I missed some of the regular characters who weren’t much in evidence this time around (Ellie, for example, is almost nowhere to be found, and DS Wield is very much in the background here), but enjoyed some of the new characters and was quite surprised at the return of an unexpected one. Probably best to read this series in order, though, to facilitate an understanding of the complicated relationships involved. Recommended.

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