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Saturday 14 March 2015

‘Frozen Grave by Lee Weeks

Published by Simon & Schuster, 27 November 2014. ISBN: 978-1-47113-360-2 (PB)

A professional woman is found brutally murdered in a seedy part of London, and the police discover she was signed up to a website visited by people in search of casual sex. Then another woman, in a different part of the country but with similar connections, is burned alive in her home.

The chase is on, and the list of suspects is soon narrowed down to a serial philanderer with money problems. D I Dan Carter and D C Ebony Willis find themselves tracking down women all over the south of England, and linking at least one of the murders to a vicious gang on an East End estate and a hostel and soup kitchen for homeless people.

There are other complications too, just to keep things interesting, and D C Willis’s family background is about as dysfunctional as they come; her mother is in a secure mental hospital, and causing even more havoc than the crime which put her there. Willis herself is an intriguing character who gives little away; damaged by her childhood, she finds trust and dependence difficult, so it’s good to see the foundations laid for a couple of positive relationships for her: threads Lee Weeks will no doubt follow up in future books.

The narrative is loosely structured, with frequent flips from one viewpoint to another, which allow the reader to stand back and see the bigger picture ahead of the cops. This doesn’t stop the final twist being a complete surprise; the clues are well buried, and I didn’t see it coming. Police procedure has been thoroughly researched, though the investigation team is a tad thin on members considering it’s a major incident squad in the Met.

Taken overall, Frozen Grave is a workmanlike, entertaining piece of fiction: just the thing for a rainy afternoon with a large bar of chocolate.
Reviewer: Lynne Patrick

Lee Weeks was born in Devon.  After leaving school she spent seven years working her way around Europe and South East Asia. She has worked as an English tearcher and personal fitness trainer. She is the author of the Willis/Carter series which is based on a London Murder Squad. MIT17. Lee now lives back in Devon.

Lynne Patrick has been a writer ever since she could pick up a pen, and has enjoyed success with short stories, reviews and feature journalism, but never, alas, with a novel. She crossed to the dark side to become a publisher for a few years, and is proud to have launched several careers which are now burgeoning. She lives on the edge of rural Derbyshire in a house groaning with books, about half of them crime fiction.

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