This is a well crafted story which kept me intrigued to the end. I liked the straightforward storyline which I found rather too close for comfort at times – very relevant given all we now know about our national press. (****)ZB
An intriguing murder mystery with many unexpected twists. Suspense is built up steadily as the story moves through the blighted career of Jeremy Halliday. Some truly harrowing passages. Highly recommended. *****
by H M Carlisle
This is a good holiday read. The murder plot is intriguing and well developed and the main character’s problems at home and at work make for a credible background to what happens. I enjoyed it. ****
by S Robertshaw
Interesting book. Well written. Great twist at the end.
Suzi (Goodreads *****)
This was a suspenseful and well-written mystery. Jeremy and Julia move to France to start a new life together until Julia breaks up with Jeremy and is murdered, leaving Jeremy as the main suspect.
I liked the way that a scandal from Jeremy’s past was woven into the story to cast doubt upon his character and leave the reader wondering. The way that Jeremy and Julia’s relationship unfolded seemed realistic and their characters were engaging. i really got into it and read it at one sitting. *****
Car Wheels on a Gravel Drive is a mystery story. Jeremy Halliday’s girlfriend has just left him, tearing a hole in his heart. Several days later, the police contact him to let him know that she never made it home to England from France. Her burnt body and car had just been found.
What follows is not just a chronicle of the investigation but also of a past accusation of sexual assault and its complex fallout. This is not a police procedural, but feels more like a drama. Much of the story is concerned with emotional fallout of traumatic events: the sexual assault accusation, the murder, an affair, and much more. The plot takes some odd turns, but all of them fit perfectly in the genre.
The relationships and personalities feel very real. These seem like things real people, would think or feel in these situations, from intense emotional agony to challenges with a non-native language. There’s a sort of modern ennui that drives the characters and is a bit sad. There is enough going on here to break from the stereotypes of modern novels.
The flashback chapters are a bit jarring and it is not always immediately obvious that they are flashbacks. Some dating or a list of how many years ago the chapter occurred could have been useful at the chapter headings. This is not an action-field novel, and a lot of it consists of talking. There are long paragraphs of dialogue, which may not be some people’s cup of tea.
Car Wheels on a Gravel Drive is an interesting, entertaining mix of murder mystery and interpersonal drama. It has enough different about it to warrant your time.