Read One Good Turn by Kate Atkinson Online

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Two years after the events of Case Histories left him a retired millionaire, Jackson Brodie has followed Julia, his occasional girlfriend and former client, to Edinburgh for its famous summer arts festival. But when he witnesses a man being brutally attacked in a traffic jam - the apparent victim of an extreme case of road rage - a chain of events is set in motion that wilTwo years after the events of Case Histories left him a retired millionaire, Jackson Brodie has followed Julia, his occasional girlfriend and former client, to Edinburgh for its famous summer arts festival. But when he witnesses a man being brutally attacked in a traffic jam - the apparent victim of an extreme case of road rage - a chain of events is set in motion that will pull the wife of an unscrupulous real estate tycoon, a timid but successful crime novelist, and a hardheaded female police detective into Jackson's orbit. Suddenly out of retirement, Jackson is once again in the midst of several mysteries that intersect in one giant and sinister scheme....

Title : One Good Turn
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780552155335
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 528 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

One Good Turn Reviews

  • brook
    2019-03-16 20:43

    it took me long enough to finish this one, which says a lot. i'm the person who will willingly give up sleep, food, social interaction and general human-like activities to read a good book. i really liked kate atkinson's case histories. it's been awhile since i read it, but it left enough of an impression that i was willing to dive into this one with little knowledge of what it was about, or what people thought of it. all in all, it had a very slow start for me. in fact, that was the biggest obstacle - the first 100 pages or so left me unmotivated to continue. once i was in the middle things picked up, but by the end i was just waiting to get to the last page. i love a good mystery, but something was lacking here. the characters were odd, and not exactly in a good way. things were made needlessly complicated with too many characters, and behind the sheen of the mystery, there was a distinct lack of sincerity in this book that i found in case histories and really missed here. i didn't find myself particularly caring about the secret behind all the seemingly random events that were actually tied together; and without that, there wasn't much to grab onto.

  • Sandy *The world could end while I was reading and I would never notice*
    2019-02-16 15:03

    I love Kate Atkinson and I particularly love her Jackson Brodie series.A series of seemingly unrelated incidents draw the retired Jackson into a tangled web, earning him his first criminal conviction, and galvanising him into action.An excellent read.

  • Kim
    2019-02-25 14:00

    This is the second novel in the series of which ex-soldier, ex-police officer and newly wealthy ex-private detective Jackson Brodie is the chief protagonist. Just as in the first book in the series, Case Histories, the story is told from the point of view of a number of different characters, whose lives intersect with and whose actions directly and indirectly affect each other. A recurrent image in the novel is that of Matryoshka dolls – the Russian dolls which fit inside each other. The image is particularly appropriate to describe the way in which the various strands of the plot come together and like Matryoska dolls, Atkinson's characters are intricate and colourful. The mystery is really not the point of this novel, although there is a final twist which was satisfying, if not a huge surprise. What I enjoyed most are the language and the characters. Atkinson gives her characters individual and very quirky voices and uses internal monologues to great effect. Atkinson’s prose is clean and crisp. She also uses humour particularly well and there are some genuine laugh-out-loud moments. I love the fact that Atkinson does not write straightforward crime novels, even though the plot centres on traditional crime fiction themes. If Atkinson writes to a formula, then it is her own formula, not a set of rules for mystery writers. I’m very much looking forward to the next book in the series. Jackson Brodie is a most attractive character and it will be a while before I tire of either him or of Atkinson’s style. Another fun buddy read with my friend Jemidar.

  • Woodwren
    2019-02-16 19:57

    I remember a scolding from one of my high school English teachers to the effect that my classmates and I should only read books that made us better people and stop wasting our time with the other stuff. I'm not sure Atkinson's Jackson Brodie novels would rise to her standard. They're probably frustrating for mystery readers who value focused, logical plots and a clear sense of right and wrong in a novel, too. But I love these books. Atkinson's writing, her characters, and her observations of the world are wonderful in every way - sometimes laugh-out-loud funny, sometimes disturbing, sometimes melancholy, always smart. The plots ramble all over the place and rely on coincidence and irony too much by half, but I have such a good time with the reading that I don't care. This particular novel took me a few chapters to get into - Atkinson has a bad habit of introducing a character caught up in a dramatic moment and then freezing the action for too many pages while she lays out the character's backstory. I also had a hard time sorting out the characters at first - they all talk to themselves in the same quirky voice, which makes them hard to distinguish on the page. But once the story gets going, it's riveting, and all along the way, Atkinson's writing is a joy to read. "One Good Turn" is a great pick for vacation reading, or a long plane ride - any environment that allows uninterrupted reading.

  • ·Karen·
    2019-03-01 18:56

    I love Kate Atkinson's mischievous, self-deprecating, knowing wit - who else but a supremely confident writer, on her fifth novel, the second to feature Jackson Brodie, could introduce a character as 'a walking cliché', or have a dissatisfied wimpy writer of jolly crime fiction as a main protagonist, or be unafraid to point up how weird it is that all the characters keep meeting each other, how connected they are, like Russian dolls, layer within layer, doll within doll. And how does she turn a sound crime story into literary fiction? Well, partly through that self-reference, that nod to the fictionality of what she's doing, and partly by caring enough about the individuals who people her tales to give them a truly authentic back story, and to spend some time on creating it. And still never losing pace. And at the same time, she keeps you guessing as to the intended victim, and the contracting party of the hit man who appears to have been forgotten. There he is at the beginning, but then we lose sight of him until right at the end - re-enter contract killer - and the shock is not only who he kills, but who's paying him. Wow!

  • Beth
    2019-02-16 18:54

    ONE GOOD TURN by Kate Atkinson begins with a road rage incident involving one crazy guy beating a man with a baseball bat and another man, a wimpy writer of popular crime novels, knocking the crazy guy down with his laptop computer. From there we meet all sorts of seemingly unrelated characters who all become connected.It's actually a pretty good and simple story. But here's what I guess happened.My guess is that Atkinson had a pretty good short story. Someone (publisher, editor, agent, whoever) told her she had to give them a book-length novel. So she took this perfectly good short story and padded it. And the result is ONE GOOD TURN.Open this book to almost any page (except the last few), and you'll see it. One line, occasionally one or two paragraphs, of the story sandwiched between paragraphs of padding. Whatever happens reminds a character of something else that reminds the character of something else. Then back to the story soon to be followed by more padding.I had intended to read another book by Atkinson. Now I won't.

  • Teresa
    2019-02-19 20:43

    (Probably more of a 3 and 1/2 stars rating)Though I'm technically giving the two Brodie novels I've read the same amount of stars, I liked the first one (Case Histories) more, mostly (I think) for what seemed more like 'realism' than what's found in this sequel.Atkinson's sly, ironic humor is still in full force, maybe even more so with her characters' commentaries on their own reality versus that of 'real' fiction. I was bothered by two events being concealed (perhaps this is one reason I don't generally read murder mysteries), though I thought the big, surprising reveal at the end was great. For me to disclose one of those two concealed events would be a spoiler, but the other (the existence of a third backed-up copy of a character's novel) seemed to serve no purpose.The setting of Edinburgh in August was fun. I could envision my 1993 trip there -- unlike Brodie, I attended the Tattoo but none of the Fringe events; like Brodie, I felt I knew the Royal Mile after one day. The meandering, easygoing rendering of the characters' thoughts was extremely well-done; but the style of multiple, complete sentences being joined by just commas was distracting. For me, this novel could've been called the case of the missing semicolons.

  • Lizzie
    2019-03-12 18:47

    I am tempted to write this review as "nah," and leave it at that, but I want to do better by it.I am rating this really low! Surprisingly low. I don't hate this author. This isn't terrible writing. (Possibly, it is rather better writing than the Tana French book I just finished; at least nobody is described as having "hidden levels" in their "X-box game he calls a brain." Left that bit out of my last review, didn't I. Ah.)"Multiple points of view" does not communicate enough about what this book puts you through. It is a loose bucket of noodles and that bucket is your plot. Enjoy the jumble of noodles. Sometimes bits touch, but all the chapters are so spaced apart, you'll never remember why it matters. You'll think, "I think I'm supposed to be surprised that these two people know each other, but I don't even remember who this second person was the first time." There are at least foooour major povs? A total of SIX, but I guess mainly the four. It's way too many, and they are almost all awful. Martin is just awful. Gloria is pretty awful. Louise is not awful! I liked Louise! Too bad the company she is in. It would have been a good book if we actually learned anything about her.Because Jackson, our hero. He's awful! And, okay. Partly, I suppose, that is okay. He's a screwed-up anti-hero quasi-detective guy, right? Angst town. This is supposedly appealing. But nothing is given to us for our pains with him here. Talk of his (unseen) daughter and a rehash of his family pain -- exactly the same information we knew from reading his first book -- is all that makes him sympathetic, and that isn't okay. If we have to hear him having all these stupid thoughts about women, watch him making all these really stupid decisions with no explanation, if we have to wait it out while he bores us out of our skulls, we need to know why this man is ours. He is our protagonist, somehow, despite not appearing particularly more than the other third-person perspectives. But what the hell is he here for.Because every, each one of the chapters is so strangely pointless. How is this possible? These people, they are supposed to be getting us deeper in this twisty interconnected plot noodle thing, but actually they don't! Hardly at all. It is weak weak sauce. The author essentially sets each chapter to wander through the thoughts of all of these people she's created, stream of consciousness less like the good literary kind that reveals existentialist dread and more like someone's really boring diary entry about frozen dinners. Setting up characters, giving them voices, and showing us the everyday of their worlds: this is, I suppose, how you would describe the job of a novelist. Kate Atkinson is doing that job. And then she is going home at 5:00 whether she finished her work for the day or not. Did she write this book on vacation? I don't get it.This book, though technically a mystery, does not put two clues on one page (thus making us care about making any plot connections whatsoever) until page 290. 290! A dead body (page 100) does not a mystery make. Even a second dead body doesn't make it so. You're supposed to make SOMETHING MYSTERIOUS HAPPEN. And at the end, you cannot just have characters from different threads showing up in the same place and saying stuff. You're supposed to make A STORY TIE UP. I mean, good mysteries are hard, sure; I definitely wouldn't be able to do it. I am also not publishing bestsellers. So duh.I need to share an example so I do not sound so crazy. There are so many run-on sentences in this book, and I truly don't know how this happened. Just add some semicolons and you've got literature, I swear. The paragraphs will also just wander off in a completely unnecessary direction, and then you are spending your time reading something you would never in a million years wonder or care about: "E. M. Heller (what kind of a name was that?) was just plain odd, she was either a badly put-together woman or she was a man in drag. Transvestism was a mystery to Jackson, he had never in his life worn a single item of female clothing, apart from once borrowing a cashmere scarf from Julia when they were going for a walk and being troubled all afternoon..."ETC. ETC. OMG ETC. Who cares. Also what did Ms. Heller ever do to you? She seemed perfectly nice in the last chapter aside from being constantly described as ugly, which hardly seems fair. Also, Louise's annoying colleague who's constantly described as fat and insinuated to be snacking at all times. It's a narrative device! Making people we're not supposed to like reported as unattractive. Too bad that is the same sophisticated device that makes Barbie dolls a thing.Basically, this was no fun at all. I will, however, read the third book eventually. I already own it, for one thing, but I also need a tiebreaker. Case Histories was so lovely, to me. It has, perhaps, the same structural weaknesses as this book, but just a little fractured weakness and not an all-out house-falling-to-pieces waste-of-time disaster. Also, actually, it was not a very good mystery. Just a good book. I can't figure you out, Kate Atkinson. But I will try.

  • Rose
    2019-02-17 15:44

    One Good Turn is Atkinson's second novel to feature a character named Jackson Brodie, though I didn't realize it was part of a series until I had finished the book. That didn't seem to impact the story. The book is sort of a mystery, but it doesn't completely belong to the genre. There is a detective, and a crime, and a series of plot twists and turns, but I don't think the author was trying to write a piece of genre fiction. Had she tried to do just that, she may have been more successful; as it is, the book falls flat.The novel is not a mystery, but it's not a particularly enlightening piece of literature either, nor is it a portrait of especially intriguing characters. Like in Atkinson's novel Behind the Scenes at the Museum, the characters here each play a part in a much larger drama, the full extent of which is not revealed until the final act. There is a plot, and the story could have been captivating, but the problem is that Atkinson never allows us to be completely swept away in it. Her characters are flat, which makes the intricate plot seem silly. She tries to inject her characters with life, but instead fills them with sarcastic comments and absurd (but not quite comic) thoughts that reveal more about the author than the characters. Atkinson is just too present in the novel. She's on every page, shouting to the reader "Hey, this is just a book! Don't believe this crazy plot. Don't be fooled by the outrageous characters. They aren't real!" Which of course they aren't. But that's not why I'm reading.I suppose one could argue that an author might purposely remind her readers of the fictional elements of her work in order to reveal a truth. Perhaps by drawing a reader into the story world, then exposing it as mere fiction, the author draws attention in an illuminating way to the contrast between fiction and reality. I don't believe this is Atkinson's aim in One Good Turn. Here, there's no balance between the larger-than-life plot and reality, making the story seem absurd and the characters merely characters. Thus, I found the novel neither enlightening nor enjoyable.

  • Michael
    2019-03-12 20:45

    Great knack for putting the reader into the minds of a small set of characters on parallel tracks and then step by step bringing them into surprising intersections with the unfolding of the mystery. Getting there is more than half the fun. Sporadic mayhem in this Edinburgh setting stirs the four main characters to transform their lives, each already resilient from tragedies in their past. They include: Martin, a mild reclusive writer of cosy mystery novels, who bravely intercedes in road rage incident; Jackson Brodie, a former detective in town for his girlfriend's performance in an existential play at the summer festival; Louise, a local hard-boiled police detective troubled by her delinquent son; and Gloria, whose husband ends up in a coma after a night with a Russian prostitute. We are treated to their vibrant inner life of compassion, humor, and self-doubts, as each seem at first to be punished for their attempts do "one good turn" for another.

  • Alexandra Robbins
    2019-03-14 15:51

    Abandoned after 100 pages. The cover blurb reads, "The most fun I've had with a novel this year" - Ian Rankin. What I want to know is, what on earth was he *doing* with it?!

  • Bill Khaemba
    2019-02-25 14:51

    “They said love made you strong, but in Louise's opinion, it made you weak. It corkscrewed into your heart and you couldn't get it out again, not without ripping your heart to pieces.”After reading *Case Histories* and loving it, I got countless of recommendations that I continue on with the rest of the series (Thank you Paul) I loved it. Bored of reading the same plot-driven crime novels look no further… This is a cool unique crime series book that has found a balance for character study and Mystery… It is so delightful.Just like her previous novel Kate Atkinson she manages to throw the pieces of the puzzle at the reader and lets them put it back together, with an amazing writing style and the most flawed characters I have ever read in a crime book you get one  of the best crime mystery series ever.The web connects a no. of totally different characters:Jackson Brodie – divorced ex-policeman and now retired private detective, is visiting Edinburgh with his girlfriend Julia (featured in Martin Canning - a successful author of crime novels (set in the 1940s and featuring a heroine called Nina Riley) Gloria Hatter - wife of millionaire builder Graham Hatter, under investigation for fraud. Louise Monroe - a Detective Sergeant and single parent Now look at those set of Individuals… Nothing in common but one incident will draw them together and since it’s a mystery I am not telling you anything, go in blind.Kate Atkinson’s ability to weave a story together and makes you scratch your headIs truly remarkable, I would though advise you to start with her first book in the series Case Histories to kind of dip your toe into her writing and characters plus you will get so much out of the series. I literally cannot wait to dive into the next book and try out her other books because the woman can write.Thank you for reading :)Kenyan Library Blog

  • Bettie☯
    2019-03-01 19:54

    (view spoiler)[Bettie's Books (hide spoiler)]

  • Jaksen
    2019-03-16 12:55

    Well this is another confusing one...Ms. Atkinson seems to have a style that I've not encountered before. Take one incident, populate it with a half-dozen or so characters of various ages, temperaments, personalities, backgrounds, etc., then let them drop sort of loose. Jump from one character to the other as they go about their day and slowly - as if you're pulling the drawstring of a large bag - scoop them all up into one big pot (or purse), shake freely and then open the bag and let everything fall out. Plop!This was the style of this book, and of Atkinson's first novel, 'Case Studies.' I do enjoy reading her, but I'm gonna admit her brain works differently than mine. Using an omni-POV, and a rambling style in which there's a lot of 'thought,' (everyone thinks a lot in her books), and a lot of tell-tell-tell, she gets her story done. In this one the triggering incident is a case of road rage: one guy hits another guy's car, then goes at him with a bat; someone else intervenes and from there...They all drop into that (at first) open, loose drawstring bag. It's an entertaining read, and I've got to admit nobody does this style better. It had to have been a job to write it, though, keeping track of so many outlines, timelines, and who's-doing-what-to-whom at any given time.Jackson Brodie, former police detective, is her MC, but at times he's just a sort of layabout, letting things happen TO him; but still, he's likeable. So since I like this (very unusual) writing style and Jackson himself, I'll keep up with the series.Four stars.

  • Emily
    2019-02-17 16:00

    One Good Turn was a decent read. Good for lazy summer days, it's one step up from your typical beach book, but far from being great literature. I've also read Atkinson's Case Histories (also decent), but I guess it didn't make all that much of an impact, as I was almost halfway through the book before I realized that One Good Turn has the same characters as Case Histories. Then I also realized that One Good Turn follows pretty much the same formula as Case Histories, which is: take a mystery, employ multiple narrative perspectives, focus so much on the characters to the point of ignoring the mystery, culminate in a vaguely unsatisfying end. What saved this book is Atkinson's sharp wit - I found myself laughing out loud at some of her zingers. This also let me overlook the characters that bordered on cliche and the ending, which I think was supposed to be a twist, but I was more like, Eh. I'd recommend this book to anyone who doesn't really have anything better to read, but don't go out of your way to read it.

  • Ellie
    2019-03-02 15:06

    This could have been really good but it was unnecessarily long, too much padding, and I couldn't finish it - I kept getting bored and forgetting who was who!

  • Lyn Elliott
    2019-03-16 20:54

    Really 3.5.Atkinson has produced an unusual cast of characters in Edinborough during the Festival and Fringe, and she's missed no opportunity for dry humour, which I thoroughly enjoyed.But I read it in bursts. The characters and actions appear in scenes, there is so much going on, so many characters, with shaky continuity and I lost track of what was happening several times. If you were watching it on stage you might have a better chance of holding on to the thread, watching the set change physically along with the characters on stage.The last chapters were like a sped up film, characters appearing from all directions, things flying everywhere. The final twist was at least partly unexpected - the perpetrator a complete surprise; the instigator less so, but a nice twist.

  • Linda
    2019-02-21 19:03

    Stephen King recommended this author in a book column that he writes for Entertainment Weekly. (It was lying around at work and I needed something to read!)I took his recommendation seriously because in his column he went on to recommend "...and all the books of Robert Goddard." I love to come across new authors. Years ago I just happened upon Goddard and avidly read several of his tomes before I ran out of the energy needed to handle the underlying sinisterness of his stories. Now I get to go through all the books of Kate Atkinson. She writes with a light touch while telling a great, inter-connected story which covers policing, single-parenting, bad art, corporate corruption, & the exploitation of sex workers. An episode of road-rage starts the One Good Turn of the title into many more good turns. But the good turns are interspersed with some pretty nasty deeds including murder. Read her soon so we can start a fan club. LindaNote April 15, 2010. I was reviewing my reviews and found that my review of Atkinson's One Good Turn gave me no clue of the story that so fascinated me. So for my aging brain, I've added the Amazon review.Amazon.com ReviewKate Atkinson began her career with a winner: Behind the Scenes at the Museum, which captured the Whitbread First Novel Award. She followed that success with four other books, the last of which was Case Histories, her first foray into the mystery-suspense-detective genre. In that book she introduced detective Jackson Brodie, who reopened three cold cases and ended up a millionaire. A great deal happened in-between.In One Good Turn Jackson returns, following his girlfriend, Julia the actress, to the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh. He manages to fall into all kinds of trouble, starting with witnessing a brutal attack by "Honda Man" on another man stuck in a traffic jam. Is this road rage or something truly sinister? Another witness is Martin Canning, better known as Alex Blake, the writer. Martin is a shy, withdrawn, timid sort who, in a moment of unlikely action, flings a satchel at the attacker and spins him around, away from his victim. Gloria Hatter, wife of Graham, a millionaire property developer who is about to have all his secrets uncovered, is standing in a nearby queue with a friend when the attack takes place. There is nastiness afoot, and everyone is involved. Nothing is coincidental.Through a labyrinthine plot which is hard to follow because the points of view are constantly changing, the real story is played out, complete with Russians, false and mistaken identities, dead bodies, betrayals, and all manner of violent encounters. Jackson gets pulled in to the investigation by Louise Monroe, a police detective and mother of an errant 14-year-old. There might be yet another novel to follow which will take up the connection those two forge in this book. Or, Jackson might just go back to France and feed apples to the local livestock.

  • Jessica
    2019-02-20 17:02

    In this follow-up to Case Histories, we find retired detective Jackson Brodie in Edinburgh, where his girlfriend Julia is appearing in a not-very-good play. Brodie stumbles into a set of interconnected events -- a road rage incident interrupted by a meek writer of popular cozy mysteries; the murder of an over-the-hill comedian who had imposed himself at the writer's house; the disappearance of the body of a young woman wearing crucifix earrings and bearing the card of a shady cleaning service; the sudden demise of a corrupt builder of shoddy homes. Brodie criss-crosses paths with these events and characters as what seemed disparate and mysterious finally begins to coalesce into a clear narrative. The characters all struggle -- some, like the writer, overtly -- with trying to write their own life story. In the final few sentences, a twist shows us that some characters have had more control than appeared all along.

  • Jasmine
    2019-02-22 12:47

    I was really disappointed by this book. This is the follow up to Case Histories, which was a great and engaging book with interesting characters. This one is written in the same style, with lots of interlocking stories, but in this one I didn't care about any of the characters, with maybe the exception of Jackson, but even he irritated me for the bulk of the book. And Julia, who I thought was annoying but fun in Case Histories, was just completely unlikeable in this book.

  • Melissa
    2019-02-25 15:52

    This might be my last Atkinson book for a while. Jackson Brodie is a bit of a dud in the this one. He spends most of his time just moping around Edinburgh and being a real drag. I like the characters Martin and Gloria, so it's nice that they get so much play. And although this may be unintentional, the last major scene with everyone at Gloria's house where Martin shoots the bad guy is hilarious. However, the very very ending, where the mysterious assassin calls Gloria and it turns out that she was paying him to kill her husband? Even though she kept reflecting on how she was afraid he was trying to have her killed the whole time? I call foul. There's no evidence to support this, no hint in several pages worth of Gloria's thoughts on almost every other aspect of her family that she was planning this. It's a big cheat just to achieve a twisty ending.

  • Vicky
    2019-02-27 18:37

    I stopped reading this book halfway through, which is very unusual for me. I had been very entertained by it initially -- loved Atkinson's astringent wit, her hilariously apt metaphors, her willingness to say the things we usually just think but daren't say aloud. And the story was suspenseful, a page turner. Yet there came a point where I didn't want to read any more of it. The same sharp-eyed malice that had entertained me initially eventually got on my nerves. I remember having the same reaction to Atkinson's first novel, Behind the Scenes at the Museum -- that there was something ill-natured, and even cruel, about her authorial voice. Too many characters are given to too many hostile observations, and they all sound suspiciously alike.

  • Kelly
    2019-03-19 19:37

    Better than the first, tighter. Review to come.

  • SarahHannah
    2019-03-06 21:03

    Throughly enjoyable!

  • Wyma
    2019-03-10 21:00

    Remember when you first read Faulkner's The Sound and the Fury? A story told by 3 family members, each in turn speaking to the reader, telling the same story from their point of view. And you'd never read anything quite like it, and still haven't. Until McCann's Let the Great World Spin told a story of Phillipe Petit who walked a tightrope between two skyscrapers in New York City in 1974, and featured several different leading characters. Let the Great world Spin, though, moves from character to character, back and forth in time, and gradually reveals how these characters' lives are related. And their stories are told in third person, not in the voice of the character.Just recently I finished Laura Lippman's galley of The Most Dangerous Thing, a story of a neighborhood, the families who inhabit it, and a murder that is hushed up by one or more of them. Although Lippman uses third person narrative, she also gives us a great deal of dialogue so that it almost seems to be told by one neighbor then another. Lippman recommended one of her favorite authors, Kate Atkinson, so I read One Good Turn. Here Atkinson heightens the suspense of a murder mystery by circling the characters, focusing on one and then another so that we get several stories in one. This book is full of good turns, by the way. Not just the turning of the narrator from one character to another, but also the turn of one life effects a turn in another. And the author reveals clues to the murder as well as hints of the outcome for each life as she twists and turns her way through the novel. Now none of these subsequent books do quite what Faulkner did which was to essentially write three stories of the same event, without interruption of each person's narrative as I recall. Still, the style seems to have its origin in this method of Faulkner's (and no doubt many authors before him.) Apparently it's a trend (like the first person narrative was a trend of hard boiled detective stories,)one I finally recognized when I reached for my next book, A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan. This style of storytelling enriches One Good Turn as we see how the same event plays out in different lives. Some lives are fully and dramatically exploited in the story and others just tease us a little at the beginning and the end of the book. This particular method, while painstaking to convincingly employ, makes the novel more plausible, more like real life. For the reader, however, it can seem as though the conclusion is too scattered, suspense built through a narrative device rather than gripping storytelling. But that's only occasionally in One Good Turn. It's a very good story, well told with some quite likeable people in it. And there is an unmistakably cheeky author behind the narrator, behind the characters. Recommended.

  • Bandit
    2019-02-26 16:46

    I normally stay away from series, but this isn't a typical mystery series at all. Actually, it isn't even a typical mystery novel, it's an excellent exceptionally well written literary novel with a mystery underneath. I honestly think that fans of traditional mystery novels might be disappointed with this book, the body count is low, the first body doesn't even show up till almost quarter into the story and the crime solving is really not in the driver seat here. It might be that Jackson Brodie is no longer a detective, police or private, and thus this sequel is structured and themed differently. Jackson, although still being the primary character, has to share a spotlight with many new (with exception of the love interest) characters, their lives bisecting each other's in the most intricate ways. The magic here is Atkinson's writing, it's SO good. Reading her is a totally immersing experience, her characters are superbly developed, complicated, flawed, very three dimensionally human and exceptionally real. She writes men and women with equal skill, aplomb and emotional intelligence and is particularly adept at describing the Thoreau's quiet desperation that is so innate to human condition. Excellent book. Highly recommended.

  • Lita
    2019-03-08 13:59

    Sen nebija lasīts labs detektīvromāns, kur autors (šoreiz autore) meistarīgi ved lasītāju cauri notikumu un atklāsmju līkločiem. Patiesība vicaur grāmatai tiek lēnām nolobīta slāni pa slānim kā tāds sīpols. Un lai arī šī ir viena no Džeksona Broudija sērijas grāmatām, viņš nebūt nav vienīgais varonis, kuru iepazīstam arī ārpus galvenās sižeta līnijas. Neko vairāk nestāstīšu, jo detektīvromāni ir jālasa pašam. Šis varētu patikt arī tiem, kas nav žanra cienītāji.Jāsaka, ka Keitu Atkinsoni iepazinu caur viņas cita žanra darbiem, kas ir saistīti ar kara tēmu (Life after Life un A God in Ruins) un kas man ļoti patika. Līdz ar to jau labu laiku biju ziņkārīga, kādi tad ir viņas detektīvromāni. Un Atkinsone nelika vilties. Tiešām labi uzrakstīta grāmata (tulkojums arī netraucēja... nu labi, varbūt tikai vietām).Kādēļ tikai 4 zvaigznes? Jo nobeigumā kaut kā pietrūka. Pat nespēju to ietērpt vārdos. Laikam pēc tik interesanta notikumu savirknējuma biju gaidījusi kaut ko citu.

  • Tom Swift
    2019-02-26 13:43

    The is the second installment of the Jackson Brodie series. Very good, I read Case Histories last month.

  • Annabelle
    2019-02-23 20:41

    This is a very slow start, as Atkinson turns chapter, to chapter from one character to another to set the stage of people who say a car accident, where a brute comes out with a baseball bat and is hit by a computer from a bystander stopping his attack. The character development is great, even though I liked some better than others. There is Martin, the rich mystery writer with social anxiety. Jackson, the rich ex cop, bored living in France, and wrangling with his actress girlfriend. Gloria the overweight, smart but trapped in tedium wife of a real estate crook, and Louise, the tough detective, attracted to but leery of Jackson, and struggling with a shoplifting teen. There are seemingly unrelated mayhem, with a dead Russian maid washing up and disappearing, a Russian prostitute who shows up everywhere and knows too much, a dead dog and cat. Over time the story became spelling binding. The setting during the Fringe Festival in Edinborough, Scotland is a great back drop, and the details of Scottish life made me want poached eggs on toast for tea. The satire and silly internal dialogues of the characters are hilarious, and there are many surprises in the overlapping plots. A great read.

  • Bill
    2019-03-11 20:43

    This is the second book in the Jackson Brodie series and we now find Brodie in Edinburgh, which now matched up somewhat with the TV series. In this story, Brodie is only in Edinburgh because girlfriend, Julia, who we met in the first book has an acting job during Edinburgh's festival. Brodie is a retired police detecive/ private detective and finds himself somewhat out of pace during this visit. He doesn't really know what to do to occupy his time but suddenly becomes involved in a road rage incident and then finds a dead body, which also manages to disappear on him. We are introduced to a cast of interesting characters; writer Martin Canning, from the road rage incident, Gloria Hatter, the wife of conman Graham and my favourite character, Detective Sergeant Louise Monroe. The story rotates from each character's perspective and moves along nicely, gradually interconnecting their individual storylines. It's an intelligent, well-written, entertaining story and I look forward to reading the rest of this series. I enjoyed the TV series immensely and the books, so far, have not let me down at all.