Book Beginnings & The Friday 56: Wednesday’s Child by Peter Robinson

Every Friday Book Beginnings on Friday is hosted by Gillion at Rose City Reader where you can share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading. You can also share from a book you want to highlight just because it caught your fancy.

My book this week is Wednesday’s Child by Peter Robinson. I began reading his Inspector Banks books years ago and have read 11 of the 26 books in the series, mostly out of order, so I’ve been reading the earlier books to fill in the gaps, as it were. This morning reading Margot’s post I remembered that the next book in the series I have to read is the 6th book, Wednesday’s Child.

The room was a tip, the woman was a slattern. On the floor, near the door to the kitchen, a child’s doll with one eye missing lay naked on its back, right arm raised above its head. The carpet around it was so stained with ground-in mud and food it was hard to tell what shade of brown it had originally been. High in one corner, by the front window, pale flowered wallpaper had peeled away from a damp patch. The windows were streaked with grime, and the flimsy orange curtains needed washing.

Also every Friday there is The Friday 56, hosted by Freda at Freda’s Voice, where you grab a book and turn to page 56 (or 56% of an eBook), find one or more interesting sentences (no spoilers), and post them.

Page 56:

‘The superintendent mentioned the Moors Murderers, Brady and Hindley,’ said Banks. I know he’s got a bee in his bonnet about that case, but you have to admit there are parallels.’

Synopsis from Amazon

When two social workers, investigating reports of child abuse, appear at Brenda Scupham’s door, her fear of authority leads her to comply meekly with their requests. Even when they say that they must take her seven-year old daughter Gemma away for tests . . .

It is only when they fail to return Gemma the following day that Brenda realizes something has gone terribly wrong.

At the same time, Banks is investigating a particularly unpleasant murder at the site of an abandoned mine. Gradually, the leads in the two cases converge, guiding Banks to one of the most truly terrifying criminals he will ever meet . . .

Mmm … It sounds very grim! What do you think? Have you read this book – or any of the Inspector Banks books?

9 thoughts on “Book Beginnings & The Friday 56: Wednesday’s Child by Peter Robinson

  1. I did this with the Inspector Lynley-series, reading whichever books I found first and then needing to backtrack to fill in the gaps xD But that opening sentence is quite something, no? The synopsis terrifies me though, like… people posing as authorities is a fear of mine now I think. I hope you enjoy this one and have a lovely weekend 🙂
    Juli @ A Universe in Words

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    1. I’ve often begun reading a series with one of the later books and then decided I need to read them in order, even though they do read ok as standalones. I’ve now read further on in the book and it isn’t a comfortable read – it is a difficult subject.


  2. Thanks very much, Margaret, for the kind mention and the link! I do like Peter Robinson’s work, and I haven’t read it just lately. I really ought to get back to it, so thanks for the motivation, and I hope you’ll enjoy this one!

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  3. It’s odd you would post this paragraph so recently. The first line has been one of my favorites for years, but I haven’t read it in a long time. As an American, “slattern” and “tip” were not words I knew, so I looked them up, and never forgot the power of this line. Today I remembered loving it, and was googling the line to see if I remembered it correctly (that’s how I found this blog) — in my mind it was “The woman was a slattern, the room a tip.” On reflection I think Robinson’s sentence is better; it communicates the inspector’s clipped professionalism very effectively. I read several books in the series long ago, but none in more than a decade, I think. I always loved how well-written they were. I should read this one again, and maybe others, to see where the series has gone.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That is a coincidence, Frank! And I agree it is a powerful opening sentence. there are now 27 books in the series with the 28th book due out next year!


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