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Piece of My Heart (Anglais) Poche – 24 avril 2007


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Extrait

Monday, September 8, 1969

To an observer looking down from the peak of Brimleigh Beacon early that Monday morning, the scene below might have resembled the aftermath of a battle. It had rained briefly during the night, and the pale sun coaxed tendrils of mist from the damp earth. They swirled over fields dotted with motionless shapes, mingling here and there with the darker smoke of smouldering embers. Human scavengers picked their way through the carnage as if collecting discarded weapons, occasionally bending to extract an object of value from a dead man’s pocket. Others appeared to be shovelling soil or quicklime into large open graves. The light wind carried a whiff of rotting flesh.

And over the whole scene a terrible stillness reigned.

But to Dave Sampson, down on the field, there had been no battle, only a peaceful gathering, and Dave had the worm’s-­eye view. It was just after eight in the morning, and he had been up half the night along with everyone else, listening to Pink Floyd, Fleetwood Mac and Led Zeppelin. Now, the crowd had gone home, and he was moving among the motionless shapes, litter left behind by the vanished hordes, helping to clean up after the very first Brimleigh Festival. Here he was, bent over, back aching like hell, eyes burning with tiredness, plodding across the muddy field picking up rubbish. The eerie sounds of Jimmy Page playing his electric guitar with a violin bow still echoed in his mind as he shoved cellophane wrappers and half-­eaten Mars bars into his plastic bag.

Ants and beetles crawled over the remains of sandwiches and half-­empty tins of cold baked beans. Flies buzzed around the feces and wasps hovered about the necks of empty pop bottles. More than once, Dave had to manoeuvre sharply to avoid being stung. He ­couldn’t believe some of the stuff people left behind. Food wrappers, soggy newspapers and magazines, used Durex, tampons, cigarette ends, knickers, empty beer cans and roaches you’d expect, but what on earth had the person who left the Underwood typewriter been thinking of? Or the wooden crutch? Had a cripple, suddenly healed by the music, run off and left it behind?

There were other things, too, things best avoided. The makeshift toilets set over the open cesspit had been uninviting, as well as few and far between, and the queues had been long, encouraging more than one desperate person to find a quiet spot elsewhere in the field. Dave glanced towards the craters and felt glad that he ­wasn’t one of the volunteers assigned to fill them up with earth.

In an otherwise isolated spot at the southern edge of the field, where the land rose gently towards the fringes of Brimleigh Woods, Dave noticed an abandoned sleeping bag. The closer he got, the more it looked to be occupied. Had someone passed out or simply gone to sleep? More likely, Dave thought, it was drugs. All night the medical tent had been open to people suffering hallucinations from bad acid, and there had been enough Mandrax and opiated hash around to knock out an army.

Dave prodded the bag with his foot. It felt soft and heavy. He prodded it again, harder this time. Still nothing. It definitely felt as if someone were inside. Finally, he bent and pulled the zip, and when he saw what was there, he wished he ­hadn’t.

Detective Inspector Stanley Chadwick was at his desk in Brotherton House before eight o’clock Monday morning, as usual, with every intention of finishing off the paperwork that had piled up during his two weeks’ annual leave at the end of August. The caravan at Primrose Valley, with Janet and Yvonne, had made a nice haven for a while, but Yvonne was obviously restless, as only a sixteen-­year-­old on holiday with her parents can be, and crime ­didn’t stop while he was away from Leeds. Nor, apparently, did the paperwork.

It had been a good weekend. Yorkshire beat Derbyshire in the Gillette Cup Final, and if Leeds United, coming off a season as league champions, ­hadn’t managed to beat Manchester United at home, at least they had come out of it with a 2—2 draw, and Billy Bremner had scored.

The only blot on the landscape was that Yvonne had stayed out most of the night on Sunday, and it ­wasn’t the first time. Chadwick had lain awake until he heard her come in at about half past six, and by then it was time for him to get up and get ready for work. Yvonne had gone straight to her room and closed her door, so he had put off the inevitable confrontation until later, and now it was gnawing at him. He ­didn’t know what was happening to his daughter, what she was up to, but whatever it was, it frightened him. It seemed that the younger generation had been getting stranger and stranger over the past few years, more out of control, and Chadwick seemed unable to find any point of connection with them anymore. Most of them seemed like members of another species to him now. Especially his own daughter.

Chadwick tried to shake off his worries about Yvonne and glanced over the crime sheets: trouble with squatters in a Leeds city-­centre office building; a big drugs bust in Chapeltown; an assault on a woman with a stone in a sock in Bradford. Manningham Lane, he noticed, and everyone knew what kind of women you found on Manningham Lane. Still, poor cow, nobody deserved to be hit with a stone in a sock. Just over the county border, in the North Riding, the Brimleigh Festival had gone off peacefully enough, with only a few arrests for drunkenness and drug dealing — only to be expected at such an event — and a bit of bother with some skinheads at one of the fences.

At about half past nine, Chadwick reached for the next file, and he had just opened it when Karen popped her head around his door and told him Detective Chief Superintendent McCullen wanted to see him. Chadwick put the folder back on the pile. If McCullen wanted to see him, it had to be something pretty big. Whatever it was, it was bound to be a lot more interesting than paperwork.


From the Hardcover edition. --Ce texte fait référence à une édition épuisée ou non disponible de ce titre.

Revue de presse

“A fast-moving story [with] some knockout scenery and an assemblage of delicately drawn characters.” (Raleigh News & Observer)

“First-rate.” (Washington Post Book World)

“Robinson has kept up an astonishingly high standard...make no mistake, he’s among the very best.” (London Times)

“The best series now on the market.” (Stephen King)

“Wonderful...multi-layered mystery.” (Michael Connelly)

“Prepare for a crash course in taut, clean writing and subtle psychology.” (Ian Rankin)



Détails sur le produit

  • Poche: 448 pages
  • Editeur : Harper; Édition : Reprint (24 avril 2007)
  • Collection : Inspector Banks Novels
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 0060544368
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060544362
  • Dimensions du produit: 10,6 x 2,8 x 17,1 cm
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (2 commentaires client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 69.295 en Livres anglais et étrangers (Voir les 100 premiers en Livres anglais et étrangers)
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Par Evelyne N. le 24 août 2010
Format: Poche
C'est le moteur d'AMAZON qui me demande de commenter les divers titres de Peter Robinson que j'ai commandés par leur site - et que j'ai tous lus avec une immense satisfaction.
Mais mon souvenir est trop vague pour résumer l'intrigue, je ne donnerai donc que de brèves indications :
- pour ceux qui connaissent l'inspecteur BANKS : allez-y sans hésitation, c'est du bon, comme toujours avec cet auteur, simplement essayez, contrairement à moi, de suivre la chronologie pour ne rien rater de l'évolution de la vie privée de l'inspecteur
-pour ceux qui ne connaissent pas : c'est plus de la littérature que du pur polar d'action, très bien écrit, assez élaboré, avec réflexions personnelles, on entre dans le psychisme du flic, un type plus très jeune, marié, père de famille, puis divorcé, ses interactions avec ses collègues, son patron, et la campagne anglaise dans sa sublime spécificité...
Pour situer mon appréciation : J'aime Robinson autant que Mankell et plus encore que Larsson ou Connelly, à présent je découvre Val McDermid dont la qualité d'écriture (fond et forme) est assez similaire.
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Par Goadjok le 10 octobre 2010
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
With Peter Robinson you know in advance that the reading will be good, together with all the ingredients to make it interesting. Just like a dish prepared by a well known chef !
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 82 commentaires
19 internautes sur 19 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
A solid entry, but not the best we know of Peter Robinson. 23 septembre 2006
Par A. J Thompson - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
Two murders, two different periods of time and two different investigating officers. In the present day Yorkshire we have Detective Chief Inspector Alan Banks puzzling over the killing of a visiting music journalist. In the last heady days of the 1960's Detective Inspector Stanley Chadwick battles to keep the problems at home muddying the waters of his murder investigation into the death of a young woman at a fields rock concert. The up and coming stars of Chadwick's 1969 have had their day and in the present day of Banks, they're now retired veteran rock gods. The times have changed but Bank knows his Yorkshire and its people well enough by now to be certain in his belief that old crimes can never truly be forgotten.

Chadwick has a dual agenda as a parent when he assigns his crew to what might seem an impossible task - pinpointing one killer in a cast of thousands that attended an open air rock event with multiple bands and attendees. It is difficult enough to keep tabs on his own daughter who is embracing, at what he deems to be a very young age, the morality free and responsibility free lifestyle of the 1960's hippy culture. Chadwick relies on process, tried and true methods and the elimination of suspects one by one. It proves rather hard to achieve this when the people he investigates are barely aware of what they themselves did that night, let alone the activities of anyone else.

The modern day dilemmas of Banks mirror those of his predecessor in that he has a child connected with the music industry and that his murder suspects are cagey, at best. The common elements in the two crimes are what drive Banks to re-open what was supposed to be a previously resolved murder enquiry in order to get to the truth of his own.

Some of the frustration readers have expressed with this novel is that it is not much of a whodunit. Robinson has had a lot of time to craft and flesh out DCI Banks and tends not to waste time on giving his character, and thus the reader, pointers of how to behave and process. They have already been established in previous novels and what we have here is a current snapshot of where the character is in his life story. The mirror past narrative of Chadwick does, however, serve well to add much needed colour to the novel and is done, we feel, with much affection for the era and its influence on the modern day in this particular part of the world.

PIECE OF MY HEART will of course appeal to the readers of the series while not being the stellar entry in it so far. It is classic procedural Banks but even with the addition of the 1960's storyline this novel tends to progress rather ponderously with little to reward the reader for their efforts at resolution. It lacks any real sense of suspense and sadly, no twists and turns are included to race the novel towards conclusion. Acknowledged, they are not always required, but would have been a welcome inclusion in this rather bland effort from a very successful novelist well known for his rich characterization, meticulous plots and moody, sombre tones.

PIECE OF MY HEART is the 16th novel in the Detector Inspector Alan Banks series.
11 internautes sur 11 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
"It's an absurd and arbitrary world." 14 juin 2006
Par E. Bukowsky - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
Peter Robinson's "Piece of My Heart" features two murder investigations that are separated by more than three decades. In a series of flashbacks from 1969, Detective Inspector Stanley Chadwick searches for the killer of a beautiful young girl who was found stabbed to death after a rock concert. In the present, Detective Chief Inspector Alan Banks teams up with Detective Inspector Annie Cabbot to solve the homicide of a freelance music journalist named Nick Barber who was murdered in a Yorkshire cottage. What, if anything, connects these two seemingly unrelated cases?

This mystery is a wonderful vehicle for the versatile and enormously talented Peter Robinson to explore a variety of themes that he has dealt with time and again in this highly praised series: What are some of the ways in which the past intersects with the present? Why do parents who want nothing more than to protect their teenaged children alienate them and even provoke them into committing self-destructive acts? How do political considerations wreak havoc with a murder investigation? As always, the author's beautifully evocative word pictures create indelible images. Nobody describes Yorkshire and the people who live there better than Peter Robinson.

Alan Banks has matured greatly over the years. He has quit smoking, drinks moderately, is more circumspect in his love life, and cuts fewer corners professionally. However, he is still insightful, aggressive in conducting interviews, and unwilling to take abuse from his superiors. He remains a dogged and tenacious investigator who generally gets his man. Banks's counterpart in the sixties, DI Chadwick, is a World War II veteran with horrible memories that he cannot quite eradicate. He is also the worried father of a rebellious sixteen year-old-girl who runs with a fast crowd. Chadwick's professional detachment is shattered by his personal distaste for the devotees of the counterculture. Whereas Banks is liberal, open-minded, and realistic, Chadwick is opinionated, narrow-minded, and inflexible.

Robinson spends a great deal of time delving into the psyches of rock musicians and their groupies as well as of the friends and relatives of the dead journalist. Did the chaotic social scene back in the sixties foster a climate of peace and love or of anarchy and violence? One of the characters sums up the situation this way: "Strip away that thin veneer of civilization and convention, of obedience and order, and what do you get--the beast within."

The solutions to the crimes become apparent only after Cabbot, Banks, and their colleagues conduct numerous interviews and do an exhaustive amount of research. Two minor quibbles are that the book is a bit too long and some of the facts that emerge at the end come out of left field. Still, "Piece of My Heart" is a fully realized and complex suspense novel that goes well beyond a mere whodunit.
6 internautes sur 6 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
A good read. 22 août 2006
Par Patricia Gribben - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
I am a great fan of Peter Robinson's Alan Banks mysteries. In this one, we are taken back and forth from 1969 to the present as the threads of two seemingly unconnected cases weave a whole cloth. This book, while not quite as fascinating as some of Robinson's previous ones, held my interest. The characters are well drawn and their continuing story makes this book satisfying for fans of the series.
5 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
A page-turning mystery 19 juin 2006
Par Bookreporter - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
PIECE OF MY HEART is the latest in Peter Robinson's extraordinary mystery series featuring British Detective Chief Inspector Alan Banks. Here, though, Banks is absent for fully half of the book. Indeed, a great deal of this novel takes place in September 1969, at which time the murder of a winsome young woman at a rock music festival occupies the attention of Detective Inspector Stanley Chadwick. Meanwhile, in October 2005, Banks is engaged in the investigation of a rock music journalist. PIECE OF MY HEART proceeds along twin, alternating paths until their convergence ultimately makes clear the link between the two cases.

Linda Lofthouse is the subject of the 1969 case, found murdered in a sleeping bag after the Brimleigh Festival. Chadwick is hardly an expert on the youth culture at the time; names like Hendrix, Led Zeppelin and Peter Townsend mean nothing to him, never mind that his daughter Yvonne puts him in the mind of the victim. Indeed, his unease over his daughter's lifestyle --- the secretiveness, the late hours that turn into early ones, and the music --- to some extend intrude upon his investigation. What Chadwick doesn't know is that Yvonne had a tenuous but important tie to Lofthouse. He does discover, however, that Lofthouse was connected to the Mad Hatters, an up-and-coming rock band who played the festival.

Banks's present-day victim is Nick Barber, who was just beginning research for an in-depth article about the Mad Hatters. After incredible success marred by personal tragedies, the band is about to launch a reunion tour. Banks has no idea that the murder that occurred some three-odd decades ago was the catalyst for the killing that he is investigating now, and that his investigation may solve the mystery of both killings, performed years apart but forever connected.

Robinson is nothing short of a marvel. He does for London what Raymond Chandler and Ross MacDonald did for southern California, using his stories against the backdrop of an urban locale to function as a documentation of social and psychological mores of a point in time. He arguably has never succeeded as well as he does with PIECE OF MY HEART. Anyone interested in the more obscure elements of British rock music of the late 1960s will find much to delight in here with the offhand mention of bands who achieved little more than cult status (it has been decades since I have given even a passing thought to Atomic Rooster), a device that lends much to the authenticity of the portions of the tale taking place in the 1960s.

While not a lot appears to happen on the surface --- Banks asks some questions, does research, broods, poses more questions --- Robinson maintains a quiet tension from first page to last, one that makes it almost impossible to stop reading. Additionally, Banks's personal life is just boring enough to make any variation extremely interesting. If you haven't read Robinson before, save some time this summer to catch up on his previous volumes. I guarantee you will want to.

--- Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
5 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Robinson Rocks! 7 juillet 2006
Par J. Jacobs - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
If you haven't read Peter Robinson's Alan Banks stories, don't start with this one. Go back to the beginning (Gallows View)and read them all in order. Robinson developes his characters slowly over time, allowing them to change and grow. Each book adds to the understanding of the people, history and environment of contemporary England. By the time you get to Piece of My Heart, Inspector Banks will surly have won a big piece of your heart, and you will have discoved a wonderful, diverse group of characters that seem like family and friends. I haven't enjoyed a protagonist this much since McDonald's Travis Magee roamed Florida.
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