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A homeless man. Violently strangled. No leads. Except for his past. An outsider himself, DS George Cross is drawn to this case. The discovery of the dead man's connection to an old cold case then pulls Cross in further. Convinced this is where the answer to the murder lies, he sets about solving another that someone has spent the past fifteen years thinking they’ve got away A homeless man. Violently strangled. No leads. Except for his past. An outsider himself, DS George Cross is drawn to this case. The discovery of the dead man's connection to an old cold case then pulls Cross in further. Convinced this is where the answer to the murder lies, he sets about solving another that someone has spent the past fifteen years thinking they’ve got away with. Cross’ relentless obsession with logic, detail and patterns is what makes him so irritatingly brilliant. It doesn’t exactly make him popular with colleagues or his superiors, though. He has numerous enemies in the force wanting to see him fail. Red flags are soon raised as suspicious inconsistencies and errors in the original detective’s investigation come to light. Now retired, this ex-cop has powerful friends in the force and a long-standing dislike of Cross. Set in picturesque Bristol in the Southwest of England, it’s not long before the city reveals its dark underbelly, in a case of intriguing twists and turns whose result astonishes even those involved. Difficult and awkward, maybe. But Cross has the best conviction rate in Avon & Somerset Police. By far. Will this case put an end to that?


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A homeless man. Violently strangled. No leads. Except for his past. An outsider himself, DS George Cross is drawn to this case. The discovery of the dead man's connection to an old cold case then pulls Cross in further. Convinced this is where the answer to the murder lies, he sets about solving another that someone has spent the past fifteen years thinking they’ve got away A homeless man. Violently strangled. No leads. Except for his past. An outsider himself, DS George Cross is drawn to this case. The discovery of the dead man's connection to an old cold case then pulls Cross in further. Convinced this is where the answer to the murder lies, he sets about solving another that someone has spent the past fifteen years thinking they’ve got away with. Cross’ relentless obsession with logic, detail and patterns is what makes him so irritatingly brilliant. It doesn’t exactly make him popular with colleagues or his superiors, though. He has numerous enemies in the force wanting to see him fail. Red flags are soon raised as suspicious inconsistencies and errors in the original detective’s investigation come to light. Now retired, this ex-cop has powerful friends in the force and a long-standing dislike of Cross. Set in picturesque Bristol in the Southwest of England, it’s not long before the city reveals its dark underbelly, in a case of intriguing twists and turns whose result astonishes even those involved. Difficult and awkward, maybe. But Cross has the best conviction rate in Avon & Somerset Police. By far. Will this case put an end to that?

30 review for The Dentist

  1. 4 out of 5

    "Avonna

    Check out all of my reviews at: https://www.avonnalovesgenres.com THE DENTIST (DS Cross Mystery Series Book #1) by Tim Sullivan is the first book in a new British police procedural series with an intricately plotted mystery and a rather unique protagonist. A DS with Asperger syndrome would seem unlikely, but the syndrome is on a spectrum and his absence of social skills and empathy is more than compensated for by his meticulous pursuit of facts and justice. DS George Cross has the best conviction Check out all of my reviews at: https://www.avonnalovesgenres.com THE DENTIST (DS Cross Mystery Series Book #1) by Tim Sullivan is the first book in a new British police procedural series with an intricately plotted mystery and a rather unique protagonist. A DS with Asperger syndrome would seem unlikely, but the syndrome is on a spectrum and his absence of social skills and empathy is more than compensated for by his meticulous pursuit of facts and justice. DS George Cross has the best conviction rate in the Avon & Somerset Police. The prosecuting lawyers all love to get his cases because every fact is checked and in a logical order for an easy conviction. This attention to detail does not always make Cross an easy person to work with though. He is brilliant at his job, but he is not good with his colleagues. He does not understand many social cues that everyone else takes for granted. A homeless man is found murdered. Cross and his partner Ottey begin to investigate and soon find a suspect, but Cross does not believe he is responsible for the man’s death. They discover that the wife’s murdered man was a much loved dentist until the murder of his wife fifteen years previously. Cross believes the solution to their present case will be solved with the resolution of the wife’s murder. Suspicious inconsistencies begin to be raised in the original investigation. Now retired, the officer in charge of the wife’s murder is hiding something behind powerful friends on the force. Cross and Ottey are following a trail that will shock all involved. I enjoyed this new DS protagonist and all of his quirks. The rapport between Cross and Ottey is revealed throughout the story and as much as Ottey complains, she also finds Cross interesting and someone she can learn from. The third person working with Cross is Alice Mackenzie who is a police trainee. She is innocent and eager, but she has to learn how to interact with Cross which leads to some humorous exchanges and no recognition of her hard work except in Cross’ mind because he does not feel it is necessary to verbalize. The plot is very detail oriented with plenty of twists and surprises. I liked every revelation of character and plot in this mystery which made for an excellently paced read. I recommend this mystery and DS Cross. I am looking forward to many more books in this series.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Bill Kupersmith

    This pleasant and easy to follow mystery story is set in Bristol, with a body found near the famous suspension bridge, which I recall well so made the scene easy to visualise. The victim is a homeless man, but we discover that he was once a successful dentist. The unsolved murder of his wife years ago led him to a life of drink. The distinctive feature in this series is that DS George Cross has Asperger’s Syndrome (though these days that term is contested). As I have both family and friends with This pleasant and easy to follow mystery story is set in Bristol, with a body found near the famous suspension bridge, which I recall well so made the scene easy to visualise. The victim is a homeless man, but we discover that he was once a successful dentist. The unsolved murder of his wife years ago led him to a life of drink. The distinctive feature in this series is that DS George Cross has Asperger’s Syndrome (though these days that term is contested). As I have both family and friends with that condition, I was drawn to the story. Basically, it manifests itself in an absence of social skills and ‘common sense’, often combined with aversions of particular foods and sensitivity to noise. As an interrogator, Cross pursues a ruthlessly logical pattern of questioning to expose any inconsistencies in the suspect’s testimony. Fortunately, he also has a passion for justice, every detail, whether the placement of a file folder or a chain of evidence, must fall into place. This is also a very easy mystery for the reader to solve. As so often for experienced readers, we find ourselves asking, ‘Just why are we told this?’ about some seemingly innocuous detail about a character that leads to seeing a pattern, especially joined with the question, ‘How is the presence of this character necessary to the story?’ This is a very professional piece of work. Tim Sullivan is a screenwriter, and the book often feels like a pitch for a television series. For a few days amusement, I recommend it.

  3. 4 out of 5

    SA Krishnan

    Cross has Aspergers Syndrome and was fixated in the smaller details. But the way he solves the mystery using the very details, was very enjoyable to read. Though the book was slow at times, overall, the multiple layers and the various characters and the way they were weaved together was enjoyable. Liked it.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Ted Tayler

    "So close" This was so close to a five-star review. George Cross is a brilliant character, and I have no doubts whatsoever that he'll appear on the small screen in the near future. Cross and Ottey tick so many boxes for today's TV audience. As for Mackenzie, well everyone loves an underdog, and young Alice plugged away throughout The Dentist with no reward. As police procedurals go this was top-notch, my only gripe was that some of the Asperger's side-effects were gone over in too much detail. Of "So close" This was so close to a five-star review. George Cross is a brilliant character, and I have no doubts whatsoever that he'll appear on the small screen in the near future. Cross and Ottey tick so many boxes for today's TV audience. As for Mackenzie, well everyone loves an underdog, and young Alice plugged away throughout The Dentist with no reward. As police procedurals go this was top-notch, my only gripe was that some of the Asperger's side-effects were gone over in too much detail. Of course, there would be instances in George's past that deserved an airing to illustrate how the condition influences his every working day - but where do you go to in Book #3 or Book #5? Snippets such as those shoehorned into The Dentist might benefit from being included during later cases. Sometimes less is more, and if you wish readers to feel comfortable about reading later books as a standalone then George's idiosyncrasies might need to be aired yet again. It's a fine balance I guess, but the author's choice just edged me away from giving it top marks.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Vivienne Neal

    A Compelling Whodunit What a gripping murder mystery filled with twists and turns, secrets and lies, deceit, and a rush to judgment. The diverse characters draw you into their sphere, where you begin to identify with the predicaments they find themselves facing. The backdrop is Bristol, England, where Detective Sergeant George Cross, an often-misunderstood loner, and a perfectionist for scrutinizing crime scenes, makes him able to identify with a murdered victim that society has cast aside. The a A Compelling Whodunit What a gripping murder mystery filled with twists and turns, secrets and lies, deceit, and a rush to judgment. The diverse characters draw you into their sphere, where you begin to identify with the predicaments they find themselves facing. The backdrop is Bristol, England, where Detective Sergeant George Cross, an often-misunderstood loner, and a perfectionist for scrutinizing crime scenes, makes him able to identify with a murdered victim that society has cast aside. The assertive Detective Sergeant Josie Ottey is Cross’ partner; at times they can be at odds when it comes to probing the murdering of a homeless man, but along with his unconventional behavior, Josie always has his back. Once Alice Mackenzie, a police trainee, joins the team, the story becomes even more absorbing when she feels her going beyond the call of duty is unappreciated. Her feelings about George have her wondering about his interviewing, probing techniques, and her questioning why she became a police officer. As soon as Cross-comes across a cold case, it will expose some police concealment, keeping you guessing to the very end. I enjoyed reading this story, and the rapport between Cross and Ottey is first-rate; at times, their back-and-forth views can be quite amusing. Hope to see these two working together soon.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Lauren Wedderburn

    Interesting characters. Not your typical police officer or investigative methods per se. Interesting story, with a few, both expected and unexpected twists and turns. Very well written to hold the readers interest from start to finish! Definitely recommend for those who enjoy crime solving storylines.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Lise

    4.5 Stars The Dentist introduced a new police procedural to my list of favourite mystery series. George Cross works a case that spans two decades and two murders. His attention to detail, easily distracted by the white noise of life, helps him to focus on items that others have missed. His fastidiousness doesn't win him friends - indeed, I was put off by him at the start - but quickly draws reluctant admirers who see the extraordinary detection he achieves. In the end, I really enjoyed this myster 4.5 Stars The Dentist introduced a new police procedural to my list of favourite mystery series. George Cross works a case that spans two decades and two murders. His attention to detail, easily distracted by the white noise of life, helps him to focus on items that others have missed. His fastidiousness doesn't win him friends - indeed, I was put off by him at the start - but quickly draws reluctant admirers who see the extraordinary detection he achieves. In the end, I really enjoyed this mystery. Although some of the twists were telegraphed far ahead, others took me by surprise. I'm looking forward to the next offering from this author.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Andre Walter

    Thoroughly enjoyed following DS Cross work through all facts; never believing what others were telling me until he got the guilty party. Something that keeps you guessing and with a great classic ending - never saw that coming.

  9. 4 out of 5

    AngryGreyCat

    The Dentist is this month’s read over at the Kindle English Mystery Book Club. This was also a free Kindle book, at least when I purchased it. A man’s body is found. Initially, the thought it is that it will be difficult to solve as it seems to be “homeless on homeless” crime. But some things do not seem to add up, expensive dental work, special contacts, etc. Eventually, as the investigation unfolds connections are made to the past and there seem to be many paths to take to find out who the kil The Dentist is this month’s read over at the Kindle English Mystery Book Club. This was also a free Kindle book, at least when I purchased it. A man’s body is found. Initially, the thought it is that it will be difficult to solve as it seems to be “homeless on homeless” crime. But some things do not seem to add up, expensive dental work, special contacts, etc. Eventually, as the investigation unfolds connections are made to the past and there seem to be many paths to take to find out who the killer was and why they killed. Much is made here of the detective, DS George Cross, as he is on the autism spectrum and has many traits that are discussed sometimes negatively and are key to his crime solving during the novel. There are so many detective novels with the detective exhibiting autism traits that I am not entirely sure how I feel about it. I have read many from The Curious Incident… a while ago, to just last week Some Choose Darkness . I’ve enjoyed the writing and the plots. I just wonder at times how autistic individuals feel about this plethora of fiction depicting them all as these crime solving savants.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Rigby Taylor

    From the opening sentence—“The young woman standing in front of him was smiling. DS Cross was sure of this as her mouth was turned up at both corners, which was a definite sign. He wasn’t sure what it meant though, because he didn’t know her”— I was hooked on this well-written labyrinthine tale of murder and deception. Cross, an autistic detective, is an engaging fellow for the reader, but a constant irritant for his co workers. His consistently rational, honest and straightforward dealings with From the opening sentence—“The young woman standing in front of him was smiling. DS Cross was sure of this as her mouth was turned up at both corners, which was a definite sign. He wasn’t sure what it meant though, because he didn’t know her”— I was hooked on this well-written labyrinthine tale of murder and deception. Cross, an autistic detective, is an engaging fellow for the reader, but a constant irritant for his co workers. His consistently rational, honest and straightforward dealings with others, unhampered by social niceties and concern for the feelings of others, makes the reader aware of the at times stultifying effect of ‘good manners’ on our activities. Fortunately for him he has an understanding, if eccentric father. DS Ottey, his reluctant partner is a finely drawn and appealing character, as is Mackenzie, the new police recruit who has no idea what to make of her rude superior officer. The atmosphere of the police station, the difficulties of DI Carson... everything is superbly combined in this seamless tale of sad misadventure.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Cherie

    A terrific book! The character development is amazing. DS Cross is a complete mystery at the beginning and by the end of the book he is familiar and understandable, even though he is very complex. The plot is also really good. It's so very interesting to go through the clues and leads with DS Cross. I will be reading more from this author.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Sandra Burns

    If you liked the TV show, Monk, you will like this. Detective, with Asperger's, goes to solve the mystery of several murders. He, with his unique skiil in putting clues together, figured it out. The answers, I did not see coming.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Kim

    Good plot and characters. The main character is interesting because of his Asperger’s syndrome. But the focus on the syndrome became too much at times. The use of the f word seems gratuitous, there because the author thought he needed it, not because it was in character for the characters to use it.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Aisha Tritle

    George Cross is a fascinating, high-IQ ASD Detective Sergeant - and Tim's writing captures the character's unique thought process and behavior so well. Definitely the most interesting murder mystery I've read in a very long time. The path from the initial discovery to the revelations throughout to the end will keep you on the edge of your seat. Highly recommend this. Would love to see DS Cross come alive in a TV show.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Blair H. Prigg

    Intriguing This book was full of intrigue. The characters were well developed and annoyingly delightful. Cross was the type of detective that you would want to help solve such a thrilling mystery. I had narrowed the murderer down to one person -not two. At least I was half-right.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Rowena Andrews

    I have somewhat mixed feelings about this book. Firstly, I have to say that while I like the cover – I love black and white covers with a dash of colour, and the premise of the book, the title is somewhat off-putting and I think if I hadn’t seen it online, but in a bookshop, it’s one I might have avoided as a result. That would have been to my detriment, because it turned out to be an entertaining read, and I thoroughly enjoyed the main character DS Cross once I had got into the swing of his ch I have somewhat mixed feelings about this book. Firstly, I have to say that while I like the cover – I love black and white covers with a dash of colour, and the premise of the book, the title is somewhat off-putting and I think if I hadn’t seen it online, but in a bookshop, it’s one I might have avoided as a result. That would have been to my detriment, because it turned out to be an entertaining read, and I thoroughly enjoyed the main character DS Cross once I had got into the swing of his characterisation. I would say that the characters are absolutely the strongest part of The Dentist. As I said above, DS George Cross stood head and shoulders above the rest and was my favourite character – and the main reason that I will be continuing with this series. I felt that he was very well written, especially the aspect of his Asperger’s Syndrome, and how that influenced both his work and general life. There were certain points where it did feel a little too detailed, though. While I appreciated the depth, I feel that it might have been more impactful if that had been explored at a later point, even into the next books, particularly if there is to be a standalone aspect to any of the later books, as this is an aspect that will need to be revisited. That said, he has to be one of my favourite detectives that I’ve read about this year, due to the excellent characterisation. I also very much enjoyed his work partner Ottery, who is both foil and bridge to Cross’ social challenges, but who stands up brilliantly as an individual in her own right and I look forward to seeing more of their partnership in future books. The writing style threw me off for a little while, and there are places where you can see the author’s experience as a screenwriter shining through. This is certainly a book that would work well for that kind of adaption, but it took a little while to get used to the writing. That, and somewhat uneven pacing in places, where the details, particularly about Cross become a bit too detailed and counterweigh the action and progress happening elsewhere. However, once I got used to it, I found that the narrative, for the most part, flowed well, and I was drawn into the story, and more often than not caught by the twists and turns of the plot. There is an excellent level of complexity throughout the book, and I enjoyed the police procedural element, especially where it was combined with Cross’ attention to detail and routine. It felt very immersive, as though we were discovering the clues and making the connections alongside him. Overall, this was an excellent read with a good blend of tension, action and mystery, and with a standout detective and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this to fans of crime fiction. I will definitely be reading The Cyclist, the next book in this series which is out now, and keeping my eye out for future books in the series. 3.5 rounded to 4 stars because I enjoyed the characters so much.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Ann Laird

    Well done!! This novel is a real page turner. The development of the protagonist is extremely well done regarding his Asperger Syndrome both in his own characteristics as seen through the eyes of his coworkers and in reverse as to what he interprets his “unusual” behavior. Tim Sullivan has done a wonderful job of demonstrating how an individual with AS survives in their world. The plot of the novel is extremely well developed and the twist at the end makes the conclusion even better. Looking for Well done!! This novel is a real page turner. The development of the protagonist is extremely well done regarding his Asperger Syndrome both in his own characteristics as seen through the eyes of his coworkers and in reverse as to what he interprets his “unusual” behavior. Tim Sullivan has done a wonderful job of demonstrating how an individual with AS survives in their world. The plot of the novel is extremely well developed and the twist at the end makes the conclusion even better. Looking forward to Sullivan’s next novel The Cyclist!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Tina Jopling

    Absolutely loved this book and will read the next in the series, such a different slant on a detective book so refreshing. I won't spoil it by explaining the difference with this book but definitely a brilliant read.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Donald Jones

    Suspenseful and the plot took an unexpected twist Held my attention and found it hard to put it down till the end. Excellent author who compiled a number of circumstances into a great story.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Mrs Marie Flowers

    Great read, loved the way it kept you gripped right till the end Gripping book kept me guessing right until the end. Loved the detectives character. Very descriptive writing. Could have made more of the ending I thought, though I teally enjoyed this book.

  21. 5 out of 5

    NRVOUTDOORSMAN

    Very Well Done and Interesting... ...but I'm not sure how well the concept of a detective with Asperger's syndrome can be sustained through a series of books. George Cross is an interesting character, nicely delineated and defined against his job and colleagues; but it will have to be done over and over. The murder and police procedural aspects are well handled and the writing is far above the general level for books of this genre. I'll try another and see how the author addresses the issue of ch Very Well Done and Interesting... ...but I'm not sure how well the concept of a detective with Asperger's syndrome can be sustained through a series of books. George Cross is an interesting character, nicely delineated and defined against his job and colleagues; but it will have to be done over and over. The murder and police procedural aspects are well handled and the writing is far above the general level for books of this genre. I'll try another and see how the author addresses the issue of character development again. But this book was a very good choice.

  22. 4 out of 5

    sue wales

    Keeps you on your toes Very good keeps you turning the pages bit of a can’t put down type of story will read some more

  23. 4 out of 5

    Caroline

    Great start to a series, loved DS Cross and am looking forward to reading more.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Diana Anderson

    A book that makes you think My grandson is autistic and not at all like DS Cross. The way Cross looks at every component of a case makes the reader look at it the same way. I would definitely recommend it.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Ron

    Tim Sullivan is one of Britain’s best and most honored writers. In “The Dentist” Sullivan features as the main character a Police Sergeant named George Cross who despite struggling with Asperger’s syndrome is an amazingly gifted detective and crime solver. Able to adjust his fixated and anti-social behavior to police work and using his rare gifts of deductive reasoning, DS Cross solves an extremely complicated murder case stretching back over 15 years. Very entertaining and absolutely thought pr Tim Sullivan is one of Britain’s best and most honored writers. In “The Dentist” Sullivan features as the main character a Police Sergeant named George Cross who despite struggling with Asperger’s syndrome is an amazingly gifted detective and crime solver. Able to adjust his fixated and anti-social behavior to police work and using his rare gifts of deductive reasoning, DS Cross solves an extremely complicated murder case stretching back over 15 years. Very entertaining and absolutely thought provoking.

  26. 4 out of 5

    David Borthwick

    This is a cracking read. The characters are well drawn and believable. The book is both easy to read and humorous. Highly recommended.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Keith Withers

    Thoroughy baffling but terrific A real "can't put it down" book. The idiosyncrasies of DS Cross make the whole thing so intriguing. His A S is a trial for all associated with him, family, colleagues and suspects. Despite this he manages to imbue in his character a straight forward ability to sift, shuffle and organise the facts ìn to a perfectly prepared case. A must read for all lovers of detective stories

  28. 5 out of 5

    Marian Taylor

    Well for a book with such a tacky title as “The Dentist” I am surprised I downloaded this and even read it. This is one of those where you cant judge a book by the title. I found this a great read. I really warmed to Detective Cross’s idiosyncrasies, albeit through dealing on a daily basis with autism, but helped by his partner Ottey, who guides him through his maelstrom of social unacceptable comments. will also be interesting to see if Mackenzie character develops in further books.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Dave

    This was a very good police procedural which features one of the most unique detectives in contemporary fiction. DS Cross has a form of OCD, causing him to behave very strangely indeed. His single redeeming feature is that he solves crimes at a greater rate than anyone else. Of course, he upsets people left and right, both friend and foe with his weird anti-social behaviour. I enjoyed reading this one and I look forward to reading more about this very strange duck, DS Cross.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Mr P D Warr

    An excellent novel that also deals with the condition of having Aspergers and the problems others have with the person who has the condition. The ending was a complete surprise. You will enjoy this novel is you like a nonformulaic story

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