Tennison – Lynda La Plante


Published by Simon and Schuster UK on 24 September 2015

From the creator of the award-winning ITV series Prime Suspect, starring Helen Mirren, comes the fascinating back story of the iconic DCI Jane Tennison.
In 1973 Jane Tennison, aged 22, leaves the Metropolitan Police Training Academy to be placed on probationary exercise in Hackney where criminality thrives. We witness her struggle to cope in a male-dominated, chauvinistic environment, learning fast to deal with shocking situations with no help or sympathy from her superiors. Then comes her involvement in her first murder case.

My thoughts

Jane Tennison is BACK!

I was jumping for joy, when Lynda La Plante announced she was resurrecting Jane Tennison. I will never forget my introduction to Jane back in 1991 and how it shaped my love of dark crime drama and strong female characters. Lynda La Plante gave us an unforgettable and dynamic character in Jane Tennison. We all know what happened to Jane’s career from the 1990s, when she pursues George Marlow with determination, to her death. Tennison is a prequel and an opportunity to see a young Jane for the first time.

Tennison takes us back to 1973. Jane Tennison is a probationer with the Metropolitan Police in London. She is at the start of her career and learning the ropes in Hackney. Jane’s intelligence and ability is noticed by her boss, who allows her to be involved in a murder investigation.

I loved the setting of 1973 London, with the music references and the explicit political incorrectness of the era. This was a time when the role of women was changing and those challenging the stereotype had it extremely tough. Female officers are treated as second class citizens, with childish pranks and sexual harassment the norm. Jane finds a mentor in fellow officer, Kath to help her deal with it all. Kath and Jane are pioneers in a harsh environment.

It was good to see Jane’s relationship with her dreadful family at this stage. I always felt that Jane never had a great deal in common with them. Very chalk and cheese. They are traditional and Jane is her own woman.

I loved seeing Jane over a period of time, getting involved with two cases and developing friendships. Jane gets to see her first post mortem and I was willing her to tough it out. I enjoyed seeing Jane’s ability shining through in her early policing. The Jane that we know and love was very much there.

I ADORED this book. I predict that it will gain a huge following. It will appeal to everyone who fell in love with the TV series, back in the 1990s. Young Jane and the 1970s era are both equally mesmerising. Brilliant and absorbing crime drama from Lynda La Plante. I cannot wait to see more of Jane’s early adventures in Hackney and beyond.

And if you haven’t discovered Prime Suspect, you should be ashamed of yourself! Get your hands on it NOW!

About Northern Crime

Reviewer with a mind of her own. This is a collection of book reviews, which started in 2014. Mostly crime and odd other genres thrown in. Some I loved. Some I loathed. You get the picture.
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7 Responses to Tennison – Lynda La Plante

  1. Kay says:

    I loved the TV series. Need to watch it again. I’m very interested in this book. Hoping it will come out here before too long. So, you’ve read the books and watched the TV adaptation (or was it the other way around). Should I read the books?

  2. Christine says:

    I think it’s worth reading ‘Prime Suspect’, if you want to get to know Jane Tennison well. It is about her pursuit of a serial killer in London. And the TV show Prime Suspect (1991) with the amazing and ever so talented Helen Mirren in it. Definitely, Kay. You really must! Classic crime and totally brilliant.

  3. Brilliant read could not put it down ,did not want it to end ,just love your books l have read every one ,some more than once ,thank you for sharing your wonderful gift as a writer

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