[Reading] ➷ A Beautiful Place to Die By Malla Nunn – Buyprobolan50.co.uk



10 thoughts on “A Beautiful Place to Die

  1. says:

    4.5 the house is in disarray stars 2016 Honorable Mention Ms Nunn has written a detective debut that is riveting, intense, complex and compelling.I was about to start Les Miserables but decided I wanted something shorter and my murder mystery fanatic buddy sent this my way.Well, I did not do a stitch of housework this weekend as all I wanted to do is read this book The book takes place in 1950 s South Africa where apartheid is about to begin in full swing and a Dutch Police Chief is murd 4.5 the house is in disarray stars 2016 Honorable Mention Ms Nunn has written a detective debut that is riveting, intense, complex and compelling.I was about to start Les Miserables but decided I wanted something shorter and my murder mystery fanatic buddy sent this my way.Well, I did not do a stitch of housework this weekend as all I wanted to do is read this book The book takes place in 1950 s South Africa where apartheid is about to begin in full swing and a Dutch Police Chief is murdered in a small town on the Mozambique border Detective Cooper from Jo burg is first on the scene and the investigation begins.The brilliance in this book is that it is muchthan a police procedural It is a political thriller, dark romance and is psychologically insightful The characters are wonderfully etched and there are many of them Ms Nunn very succinctly teaches the non South African about race relations, gender expectations and bits of history, sociology and cultural anthropology that is seamless and fits in beautifully with the rest of the story.I don t know why this book is not better known as it is superb, endlessly interesting and full of twists and turns about the evil that lies within privilege, power relations and the interrelationships that exist in a small South African town.I loved this book so much that I have already ordered books two through four in this detective series


  2. says:

    This is a stunningly good debut novel The writing is very assured and the characters complex and well developed Set in the South Africa of 1952, with new apartheid rules introduced to segregate black from white, Detective Emmanuel Cooper is sent to investigate the murder of an Afrikaner police captain in a small town on the border with Mozambique What he discovers is a complicated story of power, race and sex However he is hampered in his investigations by the appearance of the sinister Secu This is a stunningly good debut novel The writing is very assured and the characters complex and well developed Set in the South Africa of 1952, with new apartheid rules introduced to segregate black from white, Detective Emmanuel Cooper is sent to investigate the murder of an Afrikaner police captain in a small town on the border with Mozambique What he discovers is a complicated story of power, race and sex However he is hampered in his investigations by the appearance of the sinister Security Branch who are convinced of a political plot and will do all in their power to pin the blame where they want.This story of power and corruption and the evilness that men are capable of is set against the beautiful background of South Africa The author writes so evocatively of the time and place you can feel the fear and tension simmering below the surface in the everyday lives of those who are not white, male and dominant Definitely looking forward to the next book in the series to see what becomes of Emmanuel Cooper


  3. says:

    Malla Nunn writes with such a sure and steady hand that it s hard to believe this is a first novel She really knows how to string you along with the mystery, keeping you reading as the secret lives of the characters are slowly revealed The mystery itself is excellent, but the intimate look at rural apartheid in South Africa is equally as interesting, if notso The story takes place in 1952, shortly after the National Party has enacted very strict new segregation laws It s against the la Malla Nunn writes with such a sure and steady hand that it s hard to believe this is a first novel She really knows how to string you along with the mystery, keeping you reading as the secret lives of the characters are slowly revealed The mystery itself is excellent, but the intimate look at rural apartheid in South Africa is equally as interesting, if notso The story takes place in 1952, shortly after the National Party has enacted very strict new segregation laws It s against the law for whites and blacks to even touch each other The murder of an Afrikaner police captain leads to an investigation that ultimately reveals the depravity of those who believe they are ordained and favored by God They see this as entitlement to take what they want from those not favored Their whiteness makes them virtually immune to the consequences of their actions Or does it I m looking forward to the second book in the Emmanuel Cooper series My copy of this first one has a teaser with the first few pages of the second one, so I m all primed up and ready to keep reading


  4. says:

    Excellent debut novel by Mala Nunn, takes place in 1952 south Africa as the new apartheid laws are being encoded and enforced Detective Sergeant Emmanuel Cooper, a WWII veteran, is sent to a small town to investigate the murder of the local police captain what follows is a tale of complex racial relationships, family pride and power, negotiating the new laws while trying to solve a murder, and dealing with other forces of government who may not care who is really guilty.Well written, with an i Excellent debut novel by Mala Nunn, takes place in 1952 south Africa as the new apartheid laws are being encoded and enforced Detective Sergeant Emmanuel Cooper, a WWII veteran, is sent to a small town to investigate the murder of the local police captain what follows is a tale of complex racial relationships, family pride and power, negotiating the new laws while trying to solve a murder, and dealing with other forces of government who may not care who is really guilty.Well written, with an interesting cast who I hope will reappear in future books along with Cooper.A strong 4 to 4.5


  5. says:

    What a brilliant book My first Malla Nunn, and what a beginning Detective Emmanuel Cooper found himself in Jacob s Rest, a tiny town situated on the border of South Africa and Mozambique He d been sent there to investigate a suspected homicide, but his superior was convinced it was a hoax, so only spared Emmanuel to check it out But what he found was an Afrikaner police captain who had been murdered, and his only help in the investigation were an 18 year old white boy, who had recently donned What a brilliant book My first Malla Nunn, and what a beginning Detective Emmanuel Cooper found himself in Jacob s Rest, a tiny town situated on the border of South Africa and Mozambique He d been sent there to investigate a suspected homicide, but his superior was convinced it was a hoax, so only spared Emmanuel to check it out But what he found was an Afrikaner police captain who had been murdered, and his only help in the investigation were an 18 year old white boy, who had recently donned the police uniform, and a black Zulu, Constable Shabalala who was a boyhood friend of the deceased.Suddenly the powerful Security Branch was on the scene, trying to take over the investigation Their viscious and thuggish tactics guaranteed them a result of sorts But Cooper wasn t too concerned about the politics of the situation, he just wanted to find the murderer So he went out on his own, keeping evidence from the Security Branch, in particular Lieutenant Piet Lapping, with Shabalala by his side.With racial tensions escalating, corruption and double standards rife and all leads coming to a dead end, Emmanuel found his time running out Would he find the person who took the life of the Afrikaner captain What would he uncover that would tear lives apart The incredibly fast pace of this novel, the vision of the beautiful landscape of South Africa, the heart wrenching treatment of the coloured people, especially the women, and the way the white people were sure they were untouchable, despite what they did, made this a wonderful read I am really looking forward to reading the next instalment in Detective Emmanuel Cooper s story.Highly recommended


  6. says:

    I m sort of in two minds about this book I liked the style of writing and Emmanuel Cooper, the protagonist and detective in this story The story itself was a little less exciting, and, at times, downright confusing There was a lot of talk of sex and at times it felt very graphic and unpleasant, as well as a rather unnecessary amount of violence and gore I know this story was meant to give the reader a glimpse of South Africa in the 50s, and maybe the author painted an accurate picture, I sup I m sort of in two minds about this book I liked the style of writing and Emmanuel Cooper, the protagonist and detective in this story The story itself was a little less exciting, and, at times, downright confusing There was a lot of talk of sex and at times it felt very graphic and unpleasant, as well as a rather unnecessary amount of violence and gore I know this story was meant to give the reader a glimpse of South Africa in the 50s, and maybe the author painted an accurate picture, I suppose I just hope she didn t We all know of the apartheid, so obviously, there were tremendous racial tensions at that time, in that sense, Nunn is probably trying to give us a greater understanding of the degree of discord and fear everyday people lived with, and the fact that a white policeman would naturally be viewed with suspicion, in light of this situation.So that was my little confused ramble All in all, I did think this was a good book, particularly as the main character is so strong and frankly, quite likeable I can see myself picking up the next ones in the series, once I have read something a bit lighter.If you enjoy Bryce Courtenay, this might also appeal.Findreviews and bookish fun at


  7. says:

    If you love police procedurals get on this series right now The author is only three books in and they are absolutely fantastic I love a great mystery, especially one that can educate me on a part of history I know nothing about beyond the basics The hero of the books is English police detective Emmanuel Cooper, trying to balance the tensions of learning the truth to solve the case, and the racial policies of 1950 s apartheid South Africa The white police captain has been found murdered in If you love police procedurals get on this series right now The author is only three books in and they are absolutely fantastic I love a great mystery, especially one that can educate me on a part of history I know nothing about beyond the basics The hero of the books is English police detective Emmanuel Cooper, trying to balance the tensions of learning the truth to solve the case, and the racial policies of 1950 s apartheid South Africa The white police captain has been found murdered in the small border town of Jacob s Rest Was it the black population, or smuggler s from Mozambique, or the usual suspects of most crimes, greed and lust In a community where power is king and racial tensions high, can Cooper navigate the all the factions and manage to stay afloat.Nunn opens a world of restrictive laws and racist mindsets and presents a multi layered crime equal to any in the genre The atmosphere is almost the Wild West as he tries to get the truth while not risking upsetting the apple cart too much, because it would mean his death And with each step closer to the truth what is revealed others would wish to remain hidden They would pin it on some random undesirable than the perceived ugliness of what really happened be known if only to protect the deceased and their own reputations.An absorbing mystery from a tremendous series that anyone interested in the genre should not missed And if you are looking for a great first step into the procedural novel I couldn t recommend this series enough As for me, this book also fulfills my three main goals when it comes to expanding my horizons I analyzed my reading patterns a few years ago and found I read mainly American White Male authors Malla Nunn and Emmanuel Cooper conquer all three of those problems while being fabulous too A must read


  8. says:

    Very nice beginning to a series, though still a bit rough in places There is plenty of room to grow with characters like Nunn has created, and much physical beauty in the landscape One can just see the heat and smell the air The cariacatures created to people the Security Forces are much too clownish to give a deep sense of evil, but perhaps that is the tone Nunn wished to establish After all, real evil is off putting in the extreme It may be good enough to sketch it without giving it a rea Very nice beginning to a series, though still a bit rough in places There is plenty of room to grow with characters like Nunn has created, and much physical beauty in the landscape One can just see the heat and smell the air The cariacatures created to people the Security Forces are much too clownish to give a deep sense of evil, but perhaps that is the tone Nunn wished to establish After all, real evil is off putting in the extreme It may be good enough to sketch it without giving it a real face, if the rest of the work can carry it But there were weaknesses throughout, I thought, that perhaps a little time and distance would have made apparent to the author Anyway, I ll look for book two, in hopes that practice makes perfect


  9. says:

    An excellent read, combining an exciting detective story with well told descriptions of South African locales and life before Mandela It is infuriating to read of the official intolerance and persecution of coloreds and blacks by despicable, hateful whites This was the first in a series.My wife and I had the good fortune to meet Malla a couple of years ago at a Key West Literary Seminar We heard her speak and shared a meal with her She is a delightful person.


  10. says:

    This is a new author for me and a new setting for a story The book is set in 1952 in South Africa Our protagonist is Detective Sgt Emmanuel Cooper, an Englishman Cooper has been sent out of the Johannesburg office to investigate a murder in Jacob s Rest, a small village of inbred Afrikaner farmers A body of a man has been found floating in the river It turns out that the victim is Captain Willem Pretorius, the head of the local police Cooper arrives alone without back up unaware the vic This is a new author for me and a new setting for a story The book is set in 1952 in South Africa Our protagonist is Detective Sgt Emmanuel Cooper, an Englishman Cooper has been sent out of the Johannesburg office to investigate a murder in Jacob s Rest, a small village of inbred Afrikaner farmers A body of a man has been found floating in the river It turns out that the victim is Captain Willem Pretorius, the head of the local police Cooper arrives alone without back up unaware the victim is a police officer It turns out that the Capt is the son in law of Frikkie van Brandenburg, one of the lions of Afrikaner nationhood The author weaves into the story some of the history of South Africa and the segregation of the races that has been a policy in South Africa for generations Because of the influence of the Pretorius family the secret police have been sent to hunt the killer who they say is a communist Cooper must attempt to solve the crime in spite of the threats of the secret police and all the racial problems in the village Cooper is having PSTD from his service in WWII throughout his investigation The ending is somewhat different and reveals a surprise.The story is well written and the descriptions create an almost cinematic feel to the book I enjoyed the addition of some SA history tossed into the story The array of characters was most interesting and some were refugees from war torn Europe such as the Jewish doctor I found the book most interesting and the location intriguing The author was born is Swaziland, South Africa and currently lives in Sydney Australia She is an author and an award winning filmmaker I read this as an audiobook downloaded from Audible Saul Reichlin did a good job narrating the book Reichlin is an actor, director, voice over artist and an award winning audiobook narrator


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A Beautiful Place to Die Award Winning Screenwriter Malla Nunn Delivers A Stunning And Darkly Romantic Crime Novel Set In S Apartheid South Africa, Featuring Detective Emmanuel Cooper A Man Caught Up In A Time And Place Where Racial Tensions And The Raw Hunger For Power Make Life Very Dangerous IndeedIn A Morally Complex Tale Rich With Authenticity, Nunn Takes Readers To Jacob S Rest, A Tiny Town On The Border Between South Africa And Mozambique It Is , And New Apartheid Laws Have Recently Gone Into Effect, Dividing A Nation Into Black And White While Supposedly Healing The Political Rifts Between The Afrikaners And The English Tensions Simmer As The Fault Line Between The Oppressed And The Oppressors Cuts Deeper, But It S Not Until An Afrikaner Police Officer Is Found Dead That Emotions Dangerous Than Anyone Thought Possible Boil To The SurfaceWhen Detective Emmanuel Cooper, An Englishman, Begins Investigating The Murder, His Mission Is Preempted By The Powerful Police Security Branch, Who Are Dedicated To Their Campaign To Flush Out Black Communist Radicals But Detective Cooper Isn T Interested In Political Expediency And Has Never Been One For Making Friends He May Be Modest, But He Radiates Intelligence And Certainly Won T Be Getting On His Knees Before Those In Power Instead, He Strikes Out On His Own, Following A Trail Of Clues That Lead Him To Uncover A Shocking Forbidden Love And The Imperfect Life Of Captain Pretorius, A Man Whose Relationships With The Black And Coloured Residents Of The Town He Ruled Were Complicated And Human Than Anyone Could Have ImaginedThe First In Her Detective Emmanuel Cooper Series, A Beautiful Place To Die Marks The Debut Of A Talented Writer Who Reads Like A Brilliant Combination Of Raymond Chandler And Graham Greene It Is A Tale Of Murder, Passion, Corruption, And The Corrosive Double Standard That Defined An Apartheid Nation I