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Monday 25 February 2013
‘Stop Dead’ by Leigh Russell
This the fifth in a very popular police procedural series, set in London and featuring DI Geraldine Steel. The first of the series was nominated for a highly prestigious CWA New Blood Dagger
When a rich businessman is found murdered the police immediately suspect his wife and the young lover who she had been preparing to elope with, believing they would have all his money, however when the will is read nothing is as straight forward as it might appear. The victim had quite a few well-kept secrets, giving more than just his young and beautiful wife a reason to want him dead. Then forensic evidence also points the police in another direction. Someone else closely connected with victim is found murdered shortly afterwards and DI Steel needs to find this killer before they strike again. A lot of people have motive for both killings it seems. And- the body count rises.
This is a well written, a well-researched, and a well-constructed whodunit. I have read all in this series. Each one is richer in police procedural and forensics making the pieces in the jig-saw harder to fit and the story intriguing. DI Geraldine Steel is a multi-layered character, an adopted child spilling into an insecure adulthood. Russell isn’t afraid to show her vulnerability in a personal life and then the tough-nosed cop when working. One suspects a lonely and unfulfilled personal life, and an understandable ambitious professional one. A character with a lot more to tell, and one we will be happy to journey with for many books to come. Highly recommended.
Reviewer: Linda Regan
Leigh Russell is the author of four books Cut Short, Road Closed, Dead End, and this latest book Death Bed, published May 2012. Cut Short (2009) was shortlisted for the CWA New Blood Dagger Award for Best First Novel. Leigh studied at the University of Kent gaining a Masters degree in English and American literature. A secondary school teacher, specializing in supporting pupils with Specific Learning Difficulties as well as teaching English, Leigh Russell is married with two daughters and lives in Middlesex.
Linda Regan is the author of six police procedural crime novels. She is also an actress. She holds a Masters degree in critical writing and journalism, and writes a regular column, including book reviews, for three magazines. She also presents the book-club spot on BBC Radio Kent. She is an avid reader, and welcomes the chance to read new writers