By Reginald Hill
(Harper, Hardcover, 9780062060747, 528pp.)
Publication Date: July 2011
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Wolf Haddas life has been a fairy tale. From his humble origins as a Cumbrian woodcutters son, he has risen to become a hugely successful entrepreneur, happily married to the woman of his dreams.
A knock on the door one morning ends it all. Universally reviled, thrown into prison while protesting his innocence, abandoned by friends and family, Wolf retreats into silence. Seven years later, prison psychiatrist Alva Ozigbo makes a breakthrough. Wolf begins to talk, and under her guidance he is paroled, returning to his family home in rural Cumbria.
But there was a mysterious period in Wolfs youth when he disappeared from home and was known to his employers as the Woodcutter. And now the Woodcutter is back, looking for the truthand revenge. Can Alva intervene before his pursuit of vengeance takes him to a place from which he can never come back?
The Woodcutter is a treat that both lovers of the Dalziel and Pascoe series and newcomers to the always masterful work of Reginald Hill will devour.
Reginald Hill is a native of Cumbria and a former resident of Yorkshire, the setting for his novels featuring Superintendent Dalziel and DCI Pascoe. Their appearances have won him numerous awards, including a CWA Gold Dagger and the Car-tier Diamond Dagger Lifetime Achievement Award. The Dalziel and Pascoe stories have also been adapted into a hugely popular BBC TV series.
“Reginald Hill…turns a contemporary crime of greed into a timeless morality tale….Hill’s storytelling is its own delight, a fun house of shifting timelines and multiple perspectives.”
-New York Times Book Review on The Woodcutter
“Evokes the spirit of storytellers from Dumas and Dickens to Jeffery Deaver and Jeffrey Archer.”
-Wall Street Journal on The Woodcutter
“Devilishly clever British crime writer….A nifty plotter who switches points of view and locales often enough to keep the tension on the upswing.”
-Chicago Tribune on The Woodcutter
“Offers vivid characters, an intricately constructed but nimble narrative…and enough tasty crumbs of information to lure us deeper and deeper into a fairy tale that has gone horribly wrong.”
-Richmond Times-Dispatch on The Woodcutter
“[A] tour de force.”
-People magazine on The Woodcutter
“Sly, enchanting…[with] strong characters that complement the fast-paced, unpredictable plot.”
-Publishers Weekly (starred review)
‘There’s nothing drab about this dark and compelling novel.”
-Kirkus Reviews on The Woodcutter
“He’s lost none of his sardonic wit, punch and complexity… The result is an epic, unbeatable mystery.”
“Another gem from the creator of Dalziel and Pascoe. Rich characterisation, sparkling dialogue and wry humour flavour the text. . . . Verdict: exquisite”
-Herald Sun (Australia)
“An outstanding novel of force and beauty.”
-The Times (London)
“There is something of the fairytale about The Woodcutter, a big, fat mystery which has the enduring power of a myth. . . . The heights of the Dalziel & Pascoe series aside, Hill has never written a better book.”
-The Evening Standard (London)
“Hill’s plotting…is brilliant, the jokes first-rate, the prose supple: it’s his humble awe at the power of the English language that enables him to be a minor master of it.”
-Daily Telegraph (London)
“A consummate yarn spinner, Hill draws on myth and metaphor to embroider this tightly crafted tale.”
-The Age (Melbourne)
“His storytelling is always bewitching, his turns of phrase wonderful. . . . The Woodcutter is as much literary as crime novel, but always a page turner.”
-Keighley News (England)
“Reginald Hill’s books are as good as crime fiction gets and this one is as good as he gets.”
“Hill combines an edgy tale of betrayal and revenge with the trappings of a modern-day fairy tale in this sly, enchanting stand-alone.”