• Hyde

  • A Novel
  • By: Craig Russell
  • Narrated by: James Cosmo
  • Length: 14 hrs and 12 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (51 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Winner of the 2021 McIlvanney Prize for Best Crime Novel of the Year

From the internationally acclaimed author, a stunning gothic reimagining of the Jekyll and Hyde story in which Captain Edward Hyde, chief detective of Victorian Edinburgh, investigates a gruesome murder that may unmask his own darkest secret

Victorian Edinburgh. Captain Edward Henry Hyde is chief detective for the City of Edinburgh Police; as such, he is responsible for investigating all murders and serious crimes in the city. Hyde is a striking but severe-looking man who provokes unease, and often fear, in those who encounter him. Nevertheless, Edward Hyde is truly a good man...though he wrestles fiercely with his own unique demons.  

When Hyde finds himself at the scene of a heinous murder, with no idea of how he got there or the events leading up to the discovery, his alarm is triggered on two levels. First, the crime scene is brutal and involves the Threefold Death, an ancient Celtic rite of sacrifice entangled with dark Scottish spiritual mythology. Second, Hyde's inability to remember any detail of his arrival at the crime scene makes him immediately fret about the secret he keeps from all but his physician: He suffers from a rare form of epilepsy that causes him to lose time - amnesiac absences where he cannot account for his actions - and nocturnal seizures that manifest themselves as vivid and lucid dreams.

As Hyde begins his investigation of the murder in a city on edge, he finds himself not only searching for real world clues, but trying to unravel the significance of the imagery in the otherworld of his dreaming. His investigation leads to the very places he fears, but has never fully imagined.

©2021 Craig Russell (P)2021 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"Russell writes a pacy, ever-twisting mystery that will keep you turning the pages." - Ian Rankin 

"Evocative prose (“violence hung like mine dust in the air, waiting for a spark to bring it to combustion”) enhances a suspenseful and sophisticated plot. This is the rare riff on an influential novel that sticks the landing." - Publisher's Weekly *Starred Review*

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What listeners say about Hyde

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

An interesting take on a classic

I enjoyed listening to James Cosmo's narration of this book, along with some intriguing historical facts about Edinburgh that added to it. My only regret is that it's not the beginning of a series.

1 person found this helpful

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Very like The Devil Aspect

Personally, I enjoyed both Hyde, and The Devil Aspect. But I’d recommend not reading them back to back as I did, because they are far too similar in plot. Of the two, I enjoyed the setting and Slavic mythology of the Devil Aspect a bit more than the Celtic mythology of Hyde. It was described more vividly.

I did enjoy the frame around this story, very much. It was a wry touch of the cap to Robert Louis Stevenson, himself a Scot’s writer.

Overall, highly recommended for those who like gothic and psychological mysteries.

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brings the the place and time period to life

Narrator was great, love the mythology woven in, I rarely find a writer that makes me hang on every word like this one does. my only criticism, too many red herrings, or, either, too few hints at the true culprit until the last 45 minutes. I like a story that makes me say, "Why didn't I see that coming?!!" will definitely read/ listen to more of this writer.

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Performance Ruined It--Had to Return

I was so excited to get this since I loved The Devil Aspect. That audiobook as I recall had a fabulous, beautiful narrator. This one was unlistenable.

I don't know who made this decision. What were they thinking? I had to look it up--and bingo. James Cosmo is a pretty well-known Scottish actor (with nary another audiobook to his credit). Well, he's a fine actor, but not a reader of heavy, extremely dense prose. When he gets to the dialogue he's wonderful, but this is a novel very heavy on description and exposition. Trying to listen to him slogging through ponderous paragraphs was torture!! I really tried because I immediately loved the story but I only made it to Ch. 8 before I had to give up and return.

Cosmo does not seem to have the lung capacity to make it from one end of a sentence to another. He pauses and stops constantly for breath. His diction and rhythm fights against the language. You're just hoping he makes it to the next passage of dialogue. Just awful!

As for the story, it was gripping and fascinating from the start. But sadly the Audio version is untenable.

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A must read

If you loved the Original Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde you have to read this. This is an amazing reimagining. Honestly what the movie Malignant wishes it could’ve even partway achieved with the duality ideal. This is a new favorite and i cant recommend it enough.

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Fantastic read!

This hit all my favorite elements - a well researched historical mystery with essences of the supernatural, folk horror and medical history. I am now hooked on this author.

The narrator was perfect - the light Scottish brogue was enough to lend authenticity without being difficult to follow for my US ears. 😘

Highly recommend!