Book Review: Bred in the Bone by Christopher Brookmyre

Bred in the Bone by Christopher Brookmyre

Bred in the Bone: What it is about

From the publishers: “Bred in the Bone is the stunning third novel in Brookmyre’s series featuring private investigator Jasmine Sharp and Detective Superintendent Catherine McLeod. Set in the grisly underworld of Glasgow—a place where countless old scores are always waiting to be settled—Bred in the Bone is a masterful mystery novel that will appeal to readers of Denise Mina, Val McDermid, and Ian Rankin.

In Bred in the Bone, the murder of big-time Scottish gangster Stevie Fullerton leads to unexpected consequences for Jasmine and Catherine. Jasmine’s father was murdered before her birth, and when his killer, Glen Fallan, is arrested in connection with Fullerton’s death, she is forced to confront the criminal realities of the world from which she has sprung. Meanwhile, Catherine McLeod has one major Glaswegian gangster in the mortuary and another in the cells for killing him—which ought to be cause for celebration. But she is not smiling. From the moment she discovered a symbol daubed on the victim’s head, she has understood that this case is far more dangerous than it appears on the surface, something that could threaten her family and end her career.”

Bred in the Bone: What I thought

I’ve read a few books by this writer. This is the third in a series but it can easily be read if you don’t know the first two books. I read the first book in the series as well, Where the Bodies Are Buried, but not the second one.

I liked this book a lot. It takes place in Glasgow where everyone seems to know each other. At least, the police and the criminals know each other very well, and, actually, there is an amount of overlap between the two groups.

Jasmine is a private detective who finds herself investigating the same set of gangsters as Catherine, a police officer. There is a lot going on, such as Jasmine’s protector, Glen, being arrested. But the case baffles them: is he really the killer of Stevie Fullerton? It seems unlikely. The women get more and more involved in the case. Catherine at a psychological level and Jasmine on a physical level.

The book does not contain much bloody detail, but will teach you how to kill someone with just one thumb – if you have the guts. 🙂

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars (good)

Number of pages: 416

First published: 2013

I got this: from the publishers via Netgalley (ebook)

Genre: thriller


About Leeswammes
I'm owner and editor at In my free time, I read and review books on my two blogs, Leeswammes' Blog and De Boekblogger.

7 Responses to Book Review: Bred in the Bone by Christopher Brookmyre

  1. I take it you haven’t actually tried the killing someone with a thumb? 😉 Great review it sounds like a good read.

  2. Isi says:

    I don’t think I’m reading this one, but I feel interested on the first novel in this series.

  3. BookerTalk says:

    I will bare this book in mind for when I need instructions on how to kill someone.

  4. I really like Chris Brookmyre but I haven’t read any of this series. How would you say they compare to the Jack Parlabane series?

    • Leeswammes says:

      I like the Parlabane books a little better, because they are more special – really quite quirky. This new series is more run of the mill, but still very enjoyable.

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