Book review The rising tides by Ann Cleeves

About the book

Fifty years ago, a group of teenagers spent a weekend on Holy Island, forging a bond that has lasted a lifetime. Now, they still return every five years to celebrate their friendship, and remember the friend they lost to the rising waters of the causeway at the first reunion.

Now, when one of them is found hanged, Vera is called in. Learning that the dead man had recently been fired after misconduct allegations, Vera knows she must discover what the friends are hiding, and whether the events of many years before could have led to murder then, and now . . .

But with the tide rising, secrets long-hidden are finding their way to the surface, and Vera and the team may find themselves in more danger than they could have believed possible . .


This ‘whodunnit’ has neatly interwoven characters, time and events. The story revolves around Vera Stanhope’s team as they investigate 2 murders on Holy Island in Northumbria, both connected to a group of old school friends who were present at the time, as they were 50 years earlier for another death.

None of us warmed to Vera, who manipulates those around her, carries her own baggage and is bound to achieve a successful outcome solving the crimes.

The story is a sad one with mankind’s meaner aspects coming to the fore and none of the characters are happy people.

There is no doubt that Ann Cleves is a competent and literate writer but we all laboured through this story, none of us enjoyed it and some found it boring.


Read by Dundas Readers