> Bless Their Hearts Mom: Book Review: The Birdwatcher by William Shaw
Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Book Review: The Birdwatcher by William Shaw

Disclosure / Disclaimer: I received this ebook, free of charge,from Mulholland Books via Netgalley, for review purposes on this blog. No other compensation, monetary or in kind, has been received or implied for this post. Nor was I told how to post about it,  all opinions are my own.

the birdwatcher cover


Police Sergeant William South has a good reason to shy away from murder investigations: he is a murderer himself.

A methodical, diligent, and exceptionally bright detective, South is an avid birdwatcher and trusted figure in his small town on the rugged Kentish coast. He also lives with the deeply buried secret that, as a child in Northern Ireland, he may have killed a man. When a fellow birdwatcher is found murdered in his remote home, South's world flips.

The culprit seems to be a drifter from South's childhood; the victim was the only person connecting South to his early crime; and a troubled, vivacious new female sergeant has been relocated from London and assigned to work with South. As our hero investigates, he must work ever-harder to keep his own connections to the victim, and his past, a secret.

The Birdwatcher is British crime fiction at its finest; a stirring portrait of flawed, vulnerable investigators; a meticulously constructed mystery; and a primal story of fear, loyalty and vengeance.


This is the first book in a new series from Shaw, and it's one that looks to have longevity! South is almost an anti-detective- he's not as brash or forward in his thinking. Rather he is slower and more methodical, an observer more than an aggressor. But is it because he has been a loner, or is it by choice? The arrival of a new female detective, who drags him into his neighbor's murder, drags him more into the world, and more into the lives of those around him. South is a hero that the reader roots for, and as he finds clues to the mystery, he becomes a character your want to stay with! I look forward to reading more books in this series!

About the Author:

William Shaw writes the critically acclaimed Breen and Tozer crime fiction series. Set in London in 1968-9 they include She's Leaving Home and The Kings of London, which The New York Times called "an elegy for an entire neglected generation". The Sunday Times has called them "a superb series of crime novels." The third, A Song for The Brokenhearted will be followed in 2017 by The Birdwatcher, a standalone novel.

Before writing fiction, William Shaw was the author of several non-fiction books including Westside, about a year spent with the young men of South Central Los Angeles, and A Superhero For Hire, a compilation of columns in the Observer Magazine. Check out his website, williamshaw.com, for more info!

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