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*Featured in The Times top ten crime novels of the decade*
‘This book is so, so good. Forensic, beautiful and gripping’ Graham Norton
‘A masterpiece by the woman who may be Britain’s finest living crime novelist’ Daily Telegraph
Glasgow, 1957. It is a December night and William Watt is desperate. His family has been murdered and he needs to find out who killed them.
He arrives at a bar to meet Peter Manuel, who claims he can get hold of the gun that was used. But Watt soon realises that this infamous criminal will not give up information easily.
Inspired by true events, The Long Drop follows Watt and Manuel along back streets and into smoky pubs, and on to the courtroom where the murder trial takes place. Can Manuel really be trusted to tell the truth? And how far will Watt go to get what he wants?
‘Absorbing… this is a bravura performance, a true original’ Ian Rankin
‘Revisits a dark episode in Glasgow’s past… Mina navigates the uneasy territory between fact and fiction with consummate grace’ Val McDermid
In this outstanding standalone, set in late-1950s Glasgow, from Edgar-finalist Mina (Blood, Salt, Water), William Watt stands accused of butchering his wife, daughter, and sister-in-law, but he vehemently proclaims his innocence. Only ace attorney Laurence Dowdall saves him from prison, but public sentiment is against him, forcing Watt to take on the mantle of amateur crime-solver. This is how he meets Peter Manuel, career criminal, convicted burglar, suspected rapist. The two form a strange alliance after Manuel promises to show Watt where the murder weapon is hidden but for a price. With knifelike precision, Mina flicks between the bizarre 12 hours Watt and Manuel spend together getting drunk in Glasgow bars, and Manuel's later trial, where's he's on the dock not only for the murder of the Watt family but also the slaughter of another trio, asleep in their beds. The question of guilt or innocence is irrelevant, and the gray of the in-between reigns supreme. And while Mina's usual tough female protagonists are absent, the presence of women presses as near as the crush of bodies eager to attend Manuel's trial.