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Publisher's Summary

Living again off the Isle of Lewis, ex-detective inspector Fin Macleod is working as a security officer for a local landowner. While investigating illegal activity on the estate, Fin encounters the elusive poacher and former childhood friend and bandmate Whistler Macaskill.

When Fin catches up with Whistler among the windswept hills of the estate, the two witness a freak natural phenomenon - a bog burst - that drains a loch of all its water in a flash, revealing a mud-encased light aircraft with a sickeningly familiar moniker on its side.

Both men immediately know what they will find inside: the body of Roddy Mackenzie, a friend whose flight disappeared more than 17 years earlier. But when Whistler's face appears to register something other than shock, an icy chill of apprehension overtakes Fin. 

What secret has Whistler been hiding from him, and everyone else on the island? Fin is unprepared for how the truth about the past will alter the course of the future.

©2012 Peter May (P)2018 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"This intriguing story alternates between the present, the past, and the distant past, skillfully introducing all of the characters and motives that will play an integral part in the solution of the mysteries. It is powerfully written, both in the descriptions of the barren landscape and the complicated and constantly changing relationships of the primary people involved." (Mystery Scene Magazine)

"May brings his acclaimed Lewis trilogy to a close with a novel that is both wrenching and hopeful.... [A]n utterly absorbing mystery." (Booklist, starred review)

"The Chessmen is well up to the high standard of its two predecessors: tightly plotted, with no skimping on either the nuances of character or the wonderfully evocative descriptions of rugged island landscapes that have made these books a true pleasure to read." (The Guardian)

What listeners say about The Chessmen

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    3 out of 5 stars

Friends of Fin May Want To Cross The Street!

This is the third book in the Fin MacLeod series and as usual the stars are the setting, description and narration. Of course, there is a murder or two in it all relates to Fin in some long-forgotten way. The necessary mechanics of how the mystery relates and brings up tragic memories or our lead and other characters is starting to get a bit old hat by now, but the plot is still well constructed.

Like I said, the detailed setting and characterizations are well thought out still, and the narration remains excellent. The seems on the similar plot sewing are starting to show as the series goes on.

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Sad it's over.

I was entranced with Mr.May's trilogy, and this last book was full of great twists and turns .
The presentation was well done and the effective characterizations will stick with me like old friends.
Thank You.

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good plot, dark sad ending

great narration of otherwise very dark, unhappy story. would be nice if there was some happiness to break the mean, tragic circumstances that continually surround the main characters. Worth a credit, just kept hoping something good would happen- everyone deserves some happiness

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What a letdown! May lost his fire...

I loved the first two books of The Lewis Trilogy and was SO looking forward to this third installment. Such a disappointment. So many of the features that made the first two books amazing - genuine interpersonal dynamics between Finn, his childhood friends and other islanders; historical information about the islands; multi-layered plot lines, etc. to name a few- were entirely absent. As the dialogue- mostly an inner monologue in Finns' head or with 1-2 other characters- plodded along, it seemed not to advance the plot but only to add more "grey area" to the existing skeletal structure. The first two books I found riveting- so much so that I listened overnight! But as this droned on and on I found myself not caring how it ended. Then, suddenly, the trip off-island revealed almost all of the ending with only a few loose ends to tie up. Meanwhile, some of the interesting plot lines from the first two books were barely addressed- Finn's relationship with his old love, his new life on the island, his relationship with the police force, and so forth. Perhaps author Peter May was sick of this series and resorted to old plot devices and hacks just to get it over with. Shame on him- what a waste of potential!

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Why are they calling this a trilogy?

I don't want it to be over. I thoroughly enjoyed all three books and hope that Peter May and Peter Forbes get the band back together for at least one more gig. (Small voice: so what am I supposed to do with myself now)

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Brilliant story; masterfully written and performed

I absolutely love the writing of Peter May. He paints wonderfully vivid pictures of the Isle of Lewis and moving interactions between the characters.

The narrator, Peter Forbes, was excellent, as well, although I found a very few of the Gaelic words mispronounced. (In his defense, though, it is a hard language to master, as I can attest after my two years of studying Scots Gaelic!)

At the end of this third book of the Lewis trilogy, I'm left wanting more. I suppose that may be the highest compliment a writer can receive, and I gladly give it to Mr. May.

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Best of the trilogy!

Read the first 2 books some years ago and enjoyed then very much. But, I think this final book is the best. Beautifully written. I decided to complete my experience of these books with the Audible version and a.m so glad I did. The narration was exquisite and deepened the sense of place in the bleak beauty of the Hebrides.

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Peter May’s The Chessmen

Peter Forbes narrates this and the previous two books of this Trilogy by Peter May. His narration is incredible in each of these books, and the stories themselves are equally incredible. May’s gifted writing coupled with Forbes’ gifted narration make for an Absolute Must Hear if you have any sense at all! Be sure to avail yourself of these treasures!!

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OMG

loved it so much,can't wait to hear more.this should be a movie. love Peter May books.