Helen what were you thinking. There is a promising beginning where a young spirited girl is killed after a drug deal where she refuses to pay. The dealer doesn't seem to be the murderer so we have what could be an interesting investigation set on the Leesworth Estate.
Then the possible remains of a toddler missing for 17 years are discovered. And then the local loan shark and enforcer is killed to considerable joy among the residents. DI Bayliss is swamped with cases and investigations. There are some surface connections mainly from being on the Leesworth Estate. As the cases proceed we find more connections. The cases plod along and more is revealed by the forensic scientists and interviews of suspects. As is usual for Helen Durrant the ninepins fall quickly at the end.
At the same time we have the team coming to terms with the absence of Imogen after being killed in the line of duty in the previous book. An unnecessary plot event for which I cannot forgive Helen.
DI Bayliss is again conflicted in his love (sex) life. He is alone again and returns to perhaps having feelings for his officer Ruth. Ruth is having problems with her teacher husband. Something is happening but we don't know what. His long time and suffering girlfriend Monika who farewelled him has to be interviewed. Is there a spark still there. Personally I hope not. Anyway, he always has Helen to provide a new interest.
The rest of the team is delivers their usual good investigation. Even the appropriately named Nigel who is not fitting in. Professor Batho delivers science is spite of losing Imogen who had become his girlfriend. A plot interest squandered by Helen.
I'm not sure if Helen Durrant was feeling guilty about losing Imogen but this book is unsatisfying. The missing toddler is too coincidental and while connected distantly is just a distraction.
The biggest disappointment is that the murder at the beginning is described completely off the mark. This is not a red herring with any subtly. The possibility of a resentful killer could have been a great plot for this book. This is squibbed by Helen. Some of the forensic work is a bit too much. In the end this was pretty shallow and ordinary crime by ordinary people pretending to be spectacular.
Helen seems to have written herself into a dead end. Please restrain yourself. Good characters, good writing style thrown together like a Christmas trifle.
- Format: Kindle Edition
- File Size: 1084 KB
- Print Length: 193 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publisher: Joffe Books crime, thriller, and mystery (16 July 2017)
- Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
- Language: English
- ASIN: B073ZFN6D9
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Customer Reviews: 247 customer ratings
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #491 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)