The Sentence is Death (Hawthorne, #2)
Death, deception, and a detective with quite a lot to hide stalk the pages of Anthony Horowitz's brilliant new murder mystery, the second in the bestselling series starring Private Investigator Daniel Hawthorne. _________________________ ‘You shouldn’t be here. It’s too late… ’ These, heard over the phone, were the last recorded words of successful celebrity-divorce lawyer Richard Pryce, found bludgeoned to death in his bachelor pad with a bottle of wine – a 1982 Chateau Lafite worth £3,000, to be precise.Odd, considering he didn’t drink. Why this bottle? And why those words? And why was a three-digit number painted on the wall by the killer? And, most importantly, which of the man’s many, many enemies did the deed?Baffled, the police are forced to bring in Private Investigator Daniel Hawthorne and his sidekick, the author Anthony, who’s really getting rather good at this murder investigation business.But as Hawthorne takes on the case with characteristic relish, it becomes clear that he, too, has secrets to hide. As our reluctant narrator becomes ever more embroiled in the case, he realises that these secrets must be exposed – even at the risk of death…_____________________________"This is crime fiction as dazzling entertainment, sustained by writing as skilfully light-footed as Fred Astaire" - SUNDAY TIMES CRIME CLUB (STAR PICK)"A crime story that keeps you up into the small hours… a page-turning mystery" - METRO

The Sentence is Death (Hawthorne, #2) Details

TitleThe Sentence is Death (Hawthorne, #2)
Author
ReleaseNov 1st, 2018
PublisherCornerstone Digital
Rating
GenreMystery, Crime, Fiction, Thriller, Mystery Thriller, European Literature, British Literature, Suspense, Detective, Whodunit, Contemporary

The Sentence is Death (Hawthorne, #2) Review

  • Ova - Excuse My Reading
    January 1, 1970
    Full review hereSentence is Death starts with the murder of a divorce lawyer and Horowitz sets to write a second book of this case alongside working with Hawthorne. The victim had been threatened by a well-known, award winning and fiercely literary writer and his husband seems to be hiding things… Of course, there are also issues from the past that bubbles up in surface of the case. Who visited the victim before he died, and why is there a number on the crime scene? This was such a fun read, and Full review hereSentence is Death starts with the murder of a divorce lawyer and Horowitz sets to write a second book of this case alongside working with Hawthorne. The victim had been threatened by a well-known, award winning and fiercely literary writer and his husband seems to be hiding things… Of course, there are also issues from the past that bubbles up in surface of the case. Who visited the victim before he died, and why is there a number on the crime scene? This was such a fun read, and I genuinely can’t wait for the 3rd book. I really feel desperate to know more about Hawthorne, as much as poor Horowitz in this book.
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  • Umut Reviews
    January 1, 1970
    Another witty crime book from Horowitz. If you liked The Word Is Murder, you will enjoy this one too. I thought it was better than the first, the case being more cohesive.There were convenient coincidences after all, but still an enjoyable read.
  • NZLisaM
    January 1, 1970
    Anthony Horowitz never disappoints!Richard Pryce, a high profile divorce attorney, is murdered in his home, bludgeoned to death with a two thousand quid bottle of wine, which is strange in itself as the victim didn’t drink alcohol. Even stranger, written on the wall near the body are the numerals 182. What does the message mean? Hawthorne and Horowitz are called to investigate. As per usual I was hooked from the onset, and couldn’t put the book down. Interesting and engaging characters, a suspec Anthony Horowitz never disappoints!Richard Pryce, a high profile divorce attorney, is murdered in his home, bludgeoned to death with a two thousand quid bottle of wine, which is strange in itself as the victim didn’t drink alcohol. Even stranger, written on the wall near the body are the numerals 182. What does the message mean? Hawthorne and Horowitz are called to investigate. As per usual I was hooked from the onset, and couldn’t put the book down. Interesting and engaging characters, a suspect who threatened the victim with a wine bottle in the weeks before his death, two seemingly accidental deaths, past secrets, corrupt detectives, and a behind-the-scenes look at what goes into shooting Foyles’s War made this a compelling, addictive read, and a wonderful addition to an amazing series. There was a brief moment of uncertainty when I wondered if the mystery was going to be too predictable, but I should’ve known better, because not only did the plot go in a completely different, unexpected direction, but there was also a surprising revelation unveiled at the last second.I’m not sure how similar the real Anthony Horowitz is to the one portrayed in the books, but I just adore the way he pokes fun at himself. There are some hilarious moments as Horowitz not only attempts to outwit and solve the mystery ahead of Hawthorne, but also tries to discover more about the man as a person. Hawthorne is his usual un-charming and unhelpful self, annoying Horowitz to no end right from his first appearance. Just like The Word is Murder I love the chosen title The Sentence is Death, and how it was woven into the plot. Horowitz continues to be one of my favourite current writers. He could write about paint drying and I’d lap it up. The king of the modern Agatha Christie style murder mystery.
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  • Emma
    January 1, 1970
    3.5 stars rounded up.I very much enjoyed the first book and this one was also a good read. His style in this series is very chatty, like he is actually in the room telling you about his day. I’m still confused about how much of this is true.. thanks to Netgalley for an arc of this book.
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  • Lou
    January 1, 1970
    The Sentence is Death, the second novel to feature ex-policeman and Private Investigator Daniel Hawthorne, has an old-school, authentic atmosphere to it much like the crime classics of Agatha Christie and Arthur Conan Doyle. Horowitz focusses on mystery, suspense, intrigue and keeping it clean, rather than gratuitous violence or profanity, so if you like your reads clean, then this is a fantastic choice!Here, the author pairs up with Hawthorne to investigate the suspicious death of divorce lawye The Sentence is Death, the second novel to feature ex-policeman and Private Investigator Daniel Hawthorne, has an old-school, authentic atmosphere to it much like the crime classics of Agatha Christie and Arthur Conan Doyle. Horowitz focusses on mystery, suspense, intrigue and keeping it clean, rather than gratuitous violence or profanity, so if you like your reads clean, then this is a fantastic choice!Here, the author pairs up with Hawthorne to investigate the suspicious death of divorce lawyer Richard Pryce, and with many interesting characteristics, Anthony and Daniel race against time and against the police to solve the crime. As always, there are plenty of suspenseful moments, red herrings and discreet clues to whet your appetite but stop short of revealing too much. Hawthorne is a superb character, irritating and more than a little odd, but he is a proficient investigator and that's all that really matters in his line of work. His views are certainly outdated and likely to rub people up the wrong way. He sometimes comes across as having accidentally stepped out of the 70s or 80s into the modern day! Horowitz's use of the novel as a device for getting out some of his annoyances regarding the publishing world is a work of genius and an excellent and non-confrontational method in which to do so - biography masked as fiction!With a masterfully executed plot, exceptional characterisation and lots of unexpected surprises, I hope the following additions to the series are just as engaging! The author using himself as a character is most refreshing and certainly a unique selling point!Many thanks to Century for an ARC. I was not required to post a review, and all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.
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  • Marc Bougharios
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 stars Once again (again), Horowitz does not disappoint. I can honestly say that I will read whatever this man writes because he has a way of writing that is so hard not to love. It’s impossible. Both Horowitz and Hawthorne are in this novel, and I just want to say that their partnership is a very weird one. I wouldn’t call them friends, but they aren’t so much acquaintances? It’s so hard to describe what they are but that’s the fun think about their partnership. In this novel, we are introdu 4.5 stars Once again (again), Horowitz does not disappoint. I can honestly say that I will read whatever this man writes because he has a way of writing that is so hard not to love. It’s impossible. Both Horowitz and Hawthorne are in this novel, and I just want to say that their partnership is a very weird one. I wouldn’t call them friends, but they aren’t so much acquaintances? It’s so hard to describe what they are but that’s the fun think about their partnership. In this novel, we are introduced to a new character, Detective Cara, which you will easily despise. She is the protagonist of this novel and I can honestly say that I would’ve liked her to be killed off. The plot was once again extraordinarily twisty and it’s such a fun read! Horowitz’s murders are always fun to read because it’s a little funny how Horowitz tries to figure it out before Hawthorne every time. I do wanna say that it’s not a plot that you will figure out and I was very shocked when all was revealed. I could read Horowitz all day everyday, his books are just that amazing. The thing that I love most about every Horowitz books is how he writes himself as a writer. It’s just so interesting and it’s a very risky move but it works so well with the whole novel. It even makes it a little more enjoyable to read in a way. I would’ve liked to learn a little more about Hawthorne since we don’t really know who he is at all aside from this foul mouthed ex detective. I was almost sure that we would get a glimpse of what his childhood was like, but sadly we didn’t. Overall it’s a very good mystery with the best set of characters. One you will enjoy for sure! Thank you Penguin Random House and Century Books for providing me with an advanced copy in exchange for my honest opinion.
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  • Susan
    January 1, 1970
    I adored, “The Word is Murder,” the first in the Daniel Hawthorne series, and was delighted to receive the second, “The Silence is Death,” for review. As before, Anthony Horowitz, or ‘Tony,’ as Hawthorne calls him, is very much telling the story as himself. Horowitz is working on a television series when the book begins, and Hawthorne’s reappearance is cleverly introduced – his arrival causing unintentional mayhem and annoyance. As before, Hawthorne is wonderfully irritating and yet has a bizarr I adored, “The Word is Murder,” the first in the Daniel Hawthorne series, and was delighted to receive the second, “The Silence is Death,” for review. As before, Anthony Horowitz, or ‘Tony,’ as Hawthorne calls him, is very much telling the story as himself. Horowitz is working on a television series when the book begins, and Hawthorne’s reappearance is cleverly introduced – his arrival causing unintentional mayhem and annoyance. As before, Hawthorne is wonderfully irritating and yet has a bizarre fascination for Horowitz. A sort of Seventies throwback, with definitely non-politically correct views and language; Horowitz finds him exasperating and is yet admiring of his ability to solve the most bizarre of crimes. Indeed, when Hawthorne states they have another murder to investigate, you know it will be something special. A divorce lawyer, Richard Pryce, has been murdered with an extremely expensive bottle of wine. This bizarre murder sees the pair becoming immersed in the investigation, with Horowitz gleefully having a lot of fun with the world of publishing. Pryce had been involved in a celebrity divorce, involving the author, Akira Anno, a writer of literary fiction, who visibly sneers at Horowitz. However, the divorce is only one possible strand of the investigation. This is a brilliantly executed plot, full of twists and turns. One motive involves the case that the lawyer was working on, then there is an incident in the past which may be involved and, then again, there are the usual issues with personal relationships and money. Along the way, Horowitz also tries to find out more about Hawthorne’s past and longs to solve the mystery before anyone else, while falling foul of the aggressive D.I. Cara Grunshaw and trying to juggle all of his writing commitments.I really feel that this is growing into an excellent series. In the novel, Horowitz claims to have a three book deal, writing about Hawthorne. You can only hope that he will continue the series beyond that point. It is a joy and I love the way that the author manages to insert so much of his own experiences, albeit in a fictional way, to create such an enjoyable read. I loved every part of the novel set around the world of publishing in particular, but every page was wonderfully enjoyable. I do feel that Daniel Hawthorne has a lot more to offer. Highly recommended. I received a copy of this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, for review.
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  • Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
    January 1, 1970
    I've not read THE WORD IS MURDER, book one in this series, but I definitely want to after reading this one! To be honest didn't I know a damn thing about the story before I started to read/listen to this book (yes I tend to mix it when I have the chance, listen at work, read and listen at home). And to find that Anthony Horowitz has written two books with himself as a character was a great joy (such a fun idea). He's like Private Investigator Daniel Hawthorne's own Watson. Although, their worki I've not read THE WORD IS MURDER, book one in this series, but I definitely want to after reading this one! To be honest didn't I know a damn thing about the story before I started to read/listen to this book (yes I tend to mix it when I have the chance, listen at work, read and listen at home). And to find that Anthony Horowitz has written two books with himself as a character was a great joy (such a fun idea). He's like Private Investigator Daniel Hawthorne's own Watson. Although, their working relationship is a bit strained. Anthony isn't even sure he likes Hawthorne that much. I, however, find both of them enjoyable.Anyway, there has been a murder and Anthony and Hawthorne is out to find out the truth. Anthony also struggles with an episode of Foyle's War (love that series, this book made me wanna rewatch it). As a new reader to this series was this my first encounter with the characters, and I loved getting to know them. And just like Anthony do I want to know more about Hawthorne. I had a blast reading this book and I although I saw one of the big twists a mile away did I really love the ending of the book! THE SENTENCE IS DEATH is definitely a book that I recommend and I can't wait to read the first book and the third book when it's published! Thanks to the publisher for providing me with a free copy through NetGalley!
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  • Mandy White
    January 1, 1970
    This is the second book in this series and I am really enjoying it. Love that the author narrates it and is a character in the books. High recommended!!
  • Samantha
    January 1, 1970
    Anthony Horowitz better be a character in this book 😡😤
  • Ingstje
    January 1, 1970
    If you a) like a baffling mystery and b) you’re a fan of Hercule Poirot then c) it is dead certain this novel will please you.I didn’t know at first but The Sentence is Death is actually the second in a series following PI Daniel Hawthorne and the writer, Anthony. That’s exactly right, the author of this novel is also acting as a main character, following the PI around in order to write a book (this book) about him. This infusion of some veritable facts mixed with fiction made it quite an except If you a) like a baffling mystery and b) you’re a fan of Hercule Poirot then c) it is dead certain this novel will please you.I didn’t know at first but The Sentence is Death is actually the second in a series following PI Daniel Hawthorne and the writer, Anthony. That’s exactly right, the author of this novel is also acting as a main character, following the PI around in order to write a book (this book) about him. This infusion of some veritable facts mixed with fiction made it quite an exceptional reading experience. What was told felt very realistic and authentic and Anthony’s first person POV made me feel as if I really came to know the author’s very thoughts, quite a contrast with the closed-off PI Daniel Hawthorne.Anthony Horowitz wrote several episodes of Poirot so it’s no wonder this novel was exactly my cup of tea. It does lean more towards the cosy mystery genre for me, a little lighter than the crime novels I usually read but I really liked the mystery, or should I say mysteries because there is not one but two cases to be solved.The story was complex enough to keep me highly entertained and much like Tony himself I was trawling behind Hawthorne and didn’t see the clues. Even though everything was written down word for word what was happening when they interviewed everyone involved, I couldn’t figure out the connection – if there even was one – between the puzzling murder of divorce lawyer Richard Price and another suspicious ‘incident’.There was a lot of guesswork because the novel could go forward in two very different directions with very different suspects. Did the past catch up with Price or was it indeed, as was their initial thought, one of Price’s clients? I had no idea which path it was going to follow, it was very cleverly written to keep the suspense to a maximum and it made me excited to find out the truth.I was also surprised, and very pleasantly so, the novel was set in a world of books and publicists and writers. Anthony’s character lends itself of course to dive into this world but there’s another character who’s a writer and so he finds himself in a bookshop, talking to a publicist and talking books. He refers to his first novel, The Word is Murder, a few times because that’s where he starts his cooperation with Daniel Hawthorne but I didn’t feel I missed anything and this novel is a good standalone.The Sentence is Death was a puzzling but entertaining murder mystery. Even though I haven’t warmed yet to Hawthorne, who is the only remaining mystery in this novel, I look forward to reading the third novel in the series already.
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  • Laura
    January 1, 1970
    Book reviews on www.snazzybooks.com The Sentence is Death is another brilliant novel from one of my favourite authors, Anthony Horowitz. I particularly enjoy this series as it's definitely different from most other 'crime' novels; I love the self-aware style of writing. Anthony Horowitz writes as himself, having been employed to write three books about ex-Detective Hawthorne. This is the second - the first one being The Word is Murder, another great novel [read my review here] - and throughout A Book reviews on www.snazzybooks.com The Sentence is Death is another brilliant novel from one of my favourite authors, Anthony Horowitz. I particularly enjoy this series as it's definitely different from most other 'crime' novels; I love the self-aware style of writing. Anthony Horowitz writes as himself, having been employed to write three books about ex-Detective Hawthorne. This is the second - the first one being The Word is Murder, another great novel [read my review here] - and throughout Anthonoy includes references to his life as a writer, his family and much more. It really feels like you're reading a story that's really happened, and I love the way Horowitz vents his frustration with people and the book industry in general through The Sentence is Death's pages (I loved the part where it's suggested he should "write a Bond next", to which Horowitz admits it's something "I'd wanted to do all my life" - and, of course, he has now written Forever and a Day !)Both 'characters' of Hawthorne and Horowitz are brilliant, though Hawthorne is, at times, deeply flawed and an unlikable character - there are MANY things about him I dislike, and yet I can't help but want to read more about him because the story is told through Anthony Horowitz's humorous, entertaining voice.The plot is just as enjoyable as The Word is Murder, and though there are some (I feel) obvious parts that I did sort of see coming, there were also some really clever surprises as the story went on.This novel is satisfyingly self-aware, really clever and definitely entertaining - I loved every page. I'm already looking forward to book no.3!Many thanks to Cornerstone for providing a copy of this book on which I chose to write an honest and unbiased review.
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  • Kate
    January 1, 1970
    For my full review click on the link below:https://crossexaminingcrime.wordpress...
  • Ann Girdharry
    January 1, 1970
    I like Anthony Horowitz books and this one was pretty different to the others I've read. Basically it's more of a slow-burn mystery. More of an Agatha Christie or Sherlock, old-style detective story.The core mystery seems to be based on a true story, though it was difficult to understand whether the elements (letters, historical articles etc.) which were added in to the story, were actually 'real' or part of the fictional book (I found this lack of clarity annoying, though perhaps it was my lack I like Anthony Horowitz books and this one was pretty different to the others I've read. Basically it's more of a slow-burn mystery. More of an Agatha Christie or Sherlock, old-style detective story.The core mystery seems to be based on a true story, though it was difficult to understand whether the elements (letters, historical articles etc.) which were added in to the story, were actually 'real' or part of the fictional book (I found this lack of clarity annoying, though perhaps it was my lack of understanding??).The story follows a writer as he tracks the work of Detective Hawthorne. Hawthorne is aloof and a bit odd. He solves the case (of course) and the writer is trying to do the same and lagging behind horribly. The mystery was interesting enough and clear enough, and there are plenty of potential suspects. However, the story lacked tension for me and was not as riveting as I'd have liked. Well described characters are this author's strong point and this book does not disappoint. The other interesting point about this book is the fictional writer in the book seems to be styled on Horowitz himself (his name, where he lives, his experience of living in London and working as a famous writer etc.). This definitely added interest for me and might even have been a bit more interesting than the actual mystery. Summary - this is well written and a decent mystery. The curiosity element of having Horowitz making himself a character in it is probably the biggest attraction because the story is a bit slow. 3.5 stars for me, rounded up to 4.
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  • Bill Lynas
    January 1, 1970
    Private Investigator Daniel Hawthorne returns in the sequel to The Word Is Murder. Once again he teams up with sidekick Anthony Horowitz (the author himself) and once again they are on the trail of a murderer.As with their previous adventure there is plenty of humour, most of it at the author's expense! I love the eloquent plotting & the nice mixture of what I feel must be the "real" Anthony Horowitz & the "fictional" one. However, what I like most is that this novel is quite simply Fun Private Investigator Daniel Hawthorne returns in the sequel to The Word Is Murder. Once again he teams up with sidekick Anthony Horowitz (the author himself) and once again they are on the trail of a murderer.As with their previous adventure there is plenty of humour, most of it at the author's expense! I love the eloquent plotting & the nice mixture of what I feel must be the "real" Anthony Horowitz & the "fictional" one. However, what I like most is that this novel is quite simply Fun with a capital F!!
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  • Thebooktrail
    January 1, 1970
    Visit the London locations in the novelI remember the feeling I had when I read the first of the novels where Anthony H appears as a character in his own novel. Wow I thought, did that just happen? Well it did and this is a second one just as good as the first with a twisty tale of intrigue.It's a fascinating angle for a book as Horowitz writes of his issues of waiting around on film sets, how writers might be on a film set . As the book opens he is - on the set of Foyle's war no less when Micha Visit the London locations in the novelI remember the feeling I had when I read the first of the novels where Anthony H appears as a character in his own novel. Wow I thought, did that just happen? Well it did and this is a second one just as good as the first with a twisty tale of intrigue.It's a fascinating angle for a book as Horowitz writes of his issues of waiting around on film sets, how writers might be on a film set . As the book opens he is - on the set of Foyle's war no less when Michael Kitchen walks by. This is surreal on many levels as he writes himself as a character in the book. It messes with your head but I love it!This is a very twisty tale and full of good old fashioned detective work - a series of strange numbers daubed on a wall, an expensive bottle of wine, a murder and some dark goings on in and around Hampstead Heath. The Old vic gets to play a challenging role if you excuse the theatrical pun.Surreal and insightful in equal measure. And a darn good twisty plot.
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  • Campbell
    January 1, 1970
    I wanted to like this more than I actually did as I think Mr Horowitz is a fine author. Sadly this felt like a rehash of the previous book in the series. Having said that, if you'd come to this book cold and read it as a standalone, it would be perfectly fine so perhaps I'm being overly critical.The whole DI Grunshaw subplot, however, was unnecessary and a bit ridiculous.
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  • Kate
    January 1, 1970
    Immensely enjoyable and very clever crime thriller in which the author plays a most unusual role. Every bit as good as The Word Is Murder. Roll on book 3. Review to follow shortly on For Winter Nights.
  • Nicki
    January 1, 1970
    I read this book through The Pigeonhole, a free online book club and read it with other readers on the web. It was split into 10 parts, called staves, that I read through the nifty Pigeonhole App. I was able to leave comments throughout and interact with the other readers.Even though this is the second book in the Daniel Hawthorne series, this was my first outing with the author and his detective acquaintance, and I really enjoyed it.I’d recently heard the author on the Simon Mayo’s Books of The I read this book through The Pigeonhole, a free online book club and read it with other readers on the web. It was split into 10 parts, called staves, that I read through the nifty Pigeonhole App. I was able to leave comments throughout and interact with the other readers.Even though this is the second book in the Daniel Hawthorne series, this was my first outing with the author and his detective acquaintance, and I really enjoyed it.I’d recently heard the author on the Simon Mayo’s Books of The Year podcast, so I was able to read this with his voice in my head, making it an even better reading experience. I thought it was a fun way to write a murder mystery, putting himself in the story and trying to work out who the murderer was.I didn’t work it out, even coming up with some wild theories towards the end, nothing new there you might add!I’ll definitely be reading the next one in the series. I’d also like to read the book before this as I’d love to know how the author got mixed up with the enigmatic Daniel Hawthorne.
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  • Sid Nuncius
    January 1, 1970
    I enjoyed The Sentence Is Death – probably rather more than its predecessor The Word Is Murder. It can be read as a stand-alone book, but it may help to set the background if you read The Word Is Murder first.Anthony Horowitz, narrating as though these events really did happen to him, is again roped in to “help” and write the story of the enigmatic ex-detective Hawthorne as the police call him in to assist with the investigation of the murder of a divorce lawyer in his Hampstead home. Needless t I enjoyed The Sentence Is Death – probably rather more than its predecessor The Word Is Murder. It can be read as a stand-alone book, but it may help to set the background if you read The Word Is Murder first.Anthony Horowitz, narrating as though these events really did happen to him, is again roped in to “help” and write the story of the enigmatic ex-detective Hawthorne as the police call him in to assist with the investigation of the murder of a divorce lawyer in his Hampstead home. Needless to say, a complex plot ensues involving an old caving accident and another death, as Anthony tries to make sense of it all while Hawthorne makes Delphic remarks and asks apparently irrelevant questions. It’s a lot of fun. There is more than an echo of the Holmes/Watson partnership here – which Horowitz acknowledges with plenty of references to Holmes stories – and it works very well. He also has fun at the expense of literary pretension and some of the clichés of detective fiction, but at bottom it’s a well constructed mystery which is, as you’d expect from Horowitz, very well told. (And I’m pleased to say that, while the usual slight suspension of disbelief is necessary, the ending is much less far-fetched than in the first book.)This is a fun read which is also rather gripping and holds some entertaining puzzles, too. Recommended.(My thanks to Cornerstone for an ARC via NetGalley.)
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  • Jo
    January 1, 1970
    Horowitz and his detective muse Hawthorne investigate the murder of a divorce lawyer. I love this series and it's rather reminiscent of Conan Doyle. Hawthorne is at times both infuriating and intriguing and the mystery soon sweeps you into the middle of it.
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  • Trelawn
    January 1, 1970
    I really am enjoying these stories. I have to keep reminding myself it's not real. And I have to stop myself calling Hawthorne an ass hole every 2-3 pages. I love how the story unfolds and I actually managed to figure out who the killer was this time (although not until quite close to the end). Looking forward to continuing with this series and finding out more about Hawthorne in the hope that he may have a few redeeming qualities.
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  • Maine Colonial
    January 1, 1970
    This is the second book in Horowitz’s Hawthorne series. It’s not absolutely necessary to read the first book, The Word Is Murder, before this one, but I would strongly recommend it. That’s in part because this series has an unusual premise that’s explained in more detail in the first book. The premise is that Anthony Horowitz, the author, is writing a fictional series in which Hawthorne is a sort of a downmarket Sherlock Holmes-ish genius, with Horowitz himself acting as Hawthorne’s Watson. Not This is the second book in Horowitz’s Hawthorne series. It’s not absolutely necessary to read the first book, The Word Is Murder, before this one, but I would strongly recommend it. That’s in part because this series has an unusual premise that’s explained in more detail in the first book. The premise is that Anthony Horowitz, the author, is writing a fictional series in which Hawthorne is a sort of a downmarket Sherlock Holmes-ish genius, with Horowitz himself acting as Hawthorne’s Watson. Not only does Horowitz insert himself in the novels, but he has his book character talk a lot about Horowitz’s real-life work as an author and the creator of television series, especially Foyle’s War. This is the kind of meta thing I usually roll my eyes at, but I enjoy it in this case.Hawthorne is a former police detective who now consults for the Metropolitan Police when they run into a particularly high-profile or difficult murder case. In the first book, The Word Is Murder, Hawthorne almost bullies Horowitz into agreeing to write a book about Hawthorne and his detection methods. Horowitz tags along when Hawthorne is called in on a case and, much to the frustration of both men, he tries to work the case too, rather than just take case notes for the book to come.That first case is solved, Horowitz has finished writing the book and just the arrival of the publication date awaits. This gives Horowitz time to get back to one of his many other projects, writing scripts for the Foyle’s War series. But Hawthorne, in his usual single-minded inconsiderate way, crashes onto a Foyle’s War scene being filmed in London. He wants to drag Horowitz away to join him as he sets off to the scene of a murder that he’s just been hired to work on. The murder victim is Richard Pryce, a divorce lawyer (insert lame jokes here). Pryce not only has made many enemies in his work, but also was part of a tragedy years ago that resulted in the death of a close friend. The investigation doesn’t suffer from a lack of suspects and, as with the first book in the series, Horowitz skillfully leads the reader down a path that twists—and several times turns back on itself when Horowitz spots inconsistencies, makes connections others haven’t seen or recasts the accepted meaning of some plot element.The mystery plot is fascinating and really makes the book, but the story was almost ruined for me because of one element. One of my pet peeves in crime fiction is the all-too-common depiction of police detectives behaving like total jerks to witnesses and especially to non-police investigators. Even though Horowitz the character notes that in his experience it’s unfair to portray police detectives as aggressive or corrupt, what does Horowitz the author do in this book? You guessed it: he features that very thing. Detective Inspector Kara Grundshaw the Metropolitan Police’s chief investigator assigned to the case, is physically and verbally abusive to the Horowitz character. It happens right from the get-go, continues throughout the book and is completely over the top. Worst of all, there doesn’t seem to be any reason for it than to create conflict. I just hate that ginned-up conflict stuff.I did have a few other smaller problems with the book, though they didn’t interfere with my overall enjoyment. First, in an early scene Hawthorne and Horowitz discuss Horowitz’s having misplaced his cell phone. Then, just a short time later the same day, Horowitz uses his iPhone. Hmmm. My next problem is that several times people mischaracterize a threat made to Pryce by the ex-wife of one of his clients. My final criticism is the fault of the publisher, not Anthony Horowitz. This isn’t a plot spoiler, but I don’t want anybody to worry that it might be, so I’ll put it in spoiler quotes. (view spoiler)[In the book description, it says that the last known words of Pryce, said to someone at the door just before his murder, were “You shouldn’t be here. It’s too late.” Well, no, this isn’t what he said. Instead, as is repeated several times in the book, he actually said “What are you doing here? It’s a bit late.” Is it so hard to get that right? I think most mystery readers would be annoyed at a misquotation of the victim’s last known words, whether or not it turns out to be important to the plot. (hide spoiler)]A note about the audiobook: If you do decide to read this book, and I hope you will, you’d be better off not choosing the audio version. The reader, Rory Kinnear, does a fine job with Horowitz and Hawthorne, but not so well with the other characters. Mostly they’re just less well done, and with some odd voices and tones that are inconsistent with the book’s description. But his reading of DI Kara Grundshaw is a travesty. She’s described as having a “heavy” voice, but Kinnear gives her a ludicrous screechy voice that’s completely distracting.
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  • Marjorie
    January 1, 1970
    This is my first Anthony Horowitz book and what a peculiar little tome it is. The perspective is skewed in a way that is fresh to this reader and I have to grudgingly admit I think it was this very quirkiness that appealed so much to me. The murder mystery itself is actually quite pedestrian and follows the usual tried and tested pathways of the genre - all very Agatha Christie and VERY Arthur Conan Doyle. The fact is that whilst this is ostensibly a book about a murder and the subsequent invest This is my first Anthony Horowitz book and what a peculiar little tome it is. The perspective is skewed in a way that is fresh to this reader and I have to grudgingly admit I think it was this very quirkiness that appealed so much to me. The murder mystery itself is actually quite pedestrian and follows the usual tried and tested pathways of the genre - all very Agatha Christie and VERY Arthur Conan Doyle. The fact is that whilst this is ostensibly a book about a murder and the subsequent investigation, really it is a book about people and perceptions.The quirkiness comes from the fact that the the author inserts himself in to the tale, not by virtue of writing (goodness knows there are a LOT of writers who do that) but actually a living and breathing character in the book. In fact, the narrator of the book is the author - well a semi-fictionalised version of the author; with enough knowing nods to his real life to make the lines between fact and fiction decidedly blurred. Somehow what should be an egotistical action works in Mr Horowitz's hands and sucks you right in to the tale. Although that may have more to do with the glorious Daniel Hawthorne than anything else.I knew nothing of the author before setting out on this particular book and my first reaction was this was Holmes and Watson updated for the 21st Century, all it was missing was an opium addiction and a violin. To then find out that he has written 2 Sherlock Holmes novels and then for the similarity to be openly acknowledged several times in the text it made me feel like I was in "on the joke" from the beginning. Strangely there is a lot of humour to be found in this book, of a generally black and rather bleak nature but it is there.I will admit to being captivated by this book and thoroughly enjoying every red herring - although I did call the reason behind the murder of the divorce lawyer I had not figured out whodunnit. In fact about halfway through I stopped trying to figure it all out and just enjoyed the book for what it is and gloried in the anti-social Hawthorne. So much so I bought the first book before I finished this one and have been desperate to start it but didn't want to get the storylines confused - the good news is I can start it as soon as I want now.The murder mystery itself is well constructed and you can feel Tony's frustration throughout because he always feels at least two steps behind the erstwhile ex-Inspector. The cast of characters are quite varied and although we never really explore any particular character in depth there is a feeling that you know them warts and all. In short a thoroughly good old-fashioned tale that sweeps you up and keeps you turning the pages.THIS IS AN HONEST AND UNBIASED REVIEW OF A FREE COPY OF THE BOOK RECEIVED VIA THE PIGEONHOLE
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  • Melisende d'Outremer
    January 1, 1970
    For someone who "... had no wish to turn myself into a character, a secondary one at that; the perennial sidekick .." that is exactly what Horowitz has done, quite possibly for the second time, if one reads between the lines correctly.Anyway, whilst in the midst of filming an episode of "Foyle's War", Dorian Gray like detective, Daniel Hawthorn whisks Horowitz away to investigate the murder of high profile divorce lawyer, Richard Pryce. With some cracking dialogue, basic powers of observation - For someone who "... had no wish to turn myself into a character, a secondary one at that; the perennial sidekick .." that is exactly what Horowitz has done, quite possibly for the second time, if one reads between the lines correctly.Anyway, whilst in the midst of filming an episode of "Foyle's War", Dorian Gray like detective, Daniel Hawthorn whisks Horowitz away to investigate the murder of high profile divorce lawyer, Richard Pryce. With some cracking dialogue, basic powers of observation - "... so far I had missed three clues and misconstrued two more. Things were only going to get worse." - Hawthorn and Horowitz must work ahead of the police investigation to solve this little mystery, all while trying to finish filming, re-write scenes, dealing with malevolent police detectives, and attending book clubHorowtiz is humourous and self deprecating, the naive Watson to Hawthorn's oft-times annoying, condescending, and definitely not PC Holmes. By the end of it all you are left with one question - is it real or just very clever writing .....
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  • TheRavenking
    January 1, 1970
    I have mixed feelings about The Sentence Is Death. While I enjoyed the book and it moved along at a brisk enough pace to be almost classified as a page-turner, there were certain things which annoyed me.First of all the blurb on the back-cover makes the plot sound far more exciting than it actually is:As the death toll rises, Hawthorne confronts a tangle of secrets while at the same time doing everything to conceal his own past. – It says there.I wouldn’t say the murder is baffling enough for th I have mixed feelings about The Sentence Is Death. While I enjoyed the book and it moved along at a brisk enough pace to be almost classified as a page-turner, there were certain things which annoyed me.First of all the blurb on the back-cover makes the plot sound far more exciting than it actually is:As the death toll rises, Hawthorne confronts a tangle of secrets while at the same time doing everything to conceal his own past. – It says there.I wouldn’t say the murder is baffling enough for the police to justify bringing in an outside expert (setting aside the question of how believable the whole genius amateur helping the police business is).The death toll does not really rise that high, there are only two deaths (okay, three, if you count one from years ago which might have kick-started the whole business) and it’s not that Hawthorne has to do anything to conceal his past, because Horowitz only spends about a couple of pages investigating him. There are some hints concerning his past, but we don’t really find out anything surprising about him.Daniel Hawthorne is basically the same character as in the previous book, and while I already found him a bit annoying there, this time his presence became almost grating. I just don’t like the guy, it’s not his personal beliefs, his racism and homophobia, but simply that he is not fun to be around.Personally I feel, that this concept would’ve worked with any kind of detective, and I don’t see the point of making Hawthorne’s character so unlikeable. Perhaps there is a point and we might find out at the end (If Horowitz is serious about writing 10 books in this series it may take a while though).The plot is well thought out and fairly-clued like in classic mysteries, but I thought the suspects were a pretty dull bunch. This is the sort of mystery which consist about eighty per cent of interviews with the people involved in the crime and occasionally I longed for a change of pace. Even though Horowitz later gives us a chase sequence, it is basically a mockery of chase scenes in the movies. I also felt that there was no atmosphere to the tale. I understand, this is not Sherlock Holmes, but sometimes the whole world Hawthorne and Horowitz inhabited felt a bit too ordinary and sterile for my taste.And yet, I’m relatively certain, I’ll be back for the next instalment, because let’s face it: How many authors today still write classic puzzle mysteries of this kind? Not that many. So I would say for fans of Carr, Christie etc. this is still a must-read.
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  • Lisa Bergin
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 * I really enjoyed this book read via Pigeonhole. The author placing himself within the story takes a little getting used to, but I clearly like Anthony Horowitz ‘s writing as this is the second book of his that I have read this year and liked both a lot. I didn’t work out who had done it which for me is a good thing with this type of book.
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  • Grimm
    January 1, 1970
    Ultimately I really enjoyed this second book, but there were more moments in this one where the case felt like it wasn’t the main plot in the story. Which made it feel a little slower but still good. And it came together quite beautifully at the end. :) Sincerely hoping there will be a third book.
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  • gelowmichael
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you Harper for the digital copy via Edelweiss.
  • Angi Plant
    January 1, 1970
    I read this via Anthony Horowitz/Pigeonhole and thoroughly enjoyed the way the plot twisted and turned. The relationship between the two men investigating was complex but interesting. I’d definitely recommend this as a good read.
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