As a founder member of Mystery Women in 1997, promoting Crime Fiction has always been my passion.
Following the closure of Mystery Women, a new group was formed on 30th January 2012 promoting crime fiction.
New reviews are posted daily, but to search for earlier reviews please click on the Mystery People link below and select 'reviews' from the welcome page. This will display an alphabetic option for you to find the review you would like to read
For PREVIOUS REVIEWS- Click on MYSTERY PEOPLE below -
Allison & Busby, 18 June 2020. ISBN: 978-0-7490-2601-1 (HB)
Anna Harper is the kind of novelist all aspiring writers want to be.
Her books are not only bestsellers; they are acclaimed as the kind of books
that change people’s lives. But Anna has a secret past which she keeps firmly
under wraps – guarding it with her life if necessary.
But it’s not her own life
that’s at stake, at least not at first. Her recovering addict son Felix has
just died after a relapse that resulted in an overdose; then her capable,
well-adjusted daughter Cassie is knocked off her bike by a hit-and-run motorist
and left for dead at the roadside. She survives, and isn’t even badly hurt, but
Anna is scared.
The local police carry out a
cursory investigation but decide both incidents are accidental. Anna and her
fierce constant companion Marta Morelli aren’t satisfied. Enter DCI Kelso
Strang, officer in charge of Police Scotland’s Serious Rural Crime Squad. At
first Kelso isn’t even investigating these so-called accidents; he has been
alerted to possible corruption in the local force linked to county lines drug dealing
and is there to check it out. But then Anna’s daughter goes missing.
This is the third outing for
Aline Templeton’s new detective, and the series gets better each time. The
recurring cast remains the same: Kelso himself, a highly competent copper
slowly emerging from devastating grief for his dead wife; DC Livvy Murray,
clever and perceptive but inexperienced, a little inclined to go off at a
tangent, and desperate for Kelso’s approval; DCS Jane Borthwick, his
sympathetic, down-to-earth boss; and recent arrivals Finella and Betsy, his
sister and her feisty three-year-old who haven’t yet moved out after coming to
stay for a few weeks.
As in the previous two in the
series, there’s plenty of local colour in the form of characters like bad boy
Jason Jackson, wannabe journo Sascha Silverton, ambitious DI Steve Hammond and
fusspot administrator Gil Paton, as well as Anna Harper’s household. And we
mustn’t forget the glorious, rugged, Scottish landscape which is such a feature
of Aline Templeton’s books; this time it’s the Borders, with narrow roads and
steep hillsides which become treacherous when the weather closes in.
What starts out for Kelso as
a low-key investigation into drugs and corruption rapidly develops into
something much bigger – and there’s plenty to keep the reader on the edge of
his or her seat, right up to the final pages. Aline Templeton knows how to
weave a many-stranded plot and balance a large cast of characters all with
their own agenda. You’ll want to keep reading, to discover exactly what goes on
under the surface of peaceful small-town Scotland; I certainly did.
Reviewer: Lynne Patrick
up in the fishing village of Anstruther, on the east coast of Scotland not far
from St Andrews. The memories of beautiful scenery and a close community
inspired her to set the Marjory Fleming series in a place very like that –
rural Galloway, in the south-west of Scotland. After attending Cambridge
University to read English she taught for a few years. She now
writes full-time and lives in Edinburgh in a house with a balcony built by an
astronomer to observe the stars, with a splendid view of the castle and the
beautiful city skyline. Her most recent series
featuresDCI Kelso Strang, officer in charge of Police Scotland’s Serious Rural
Crime Squad. Devil’s Garden is the third book in the series.
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 in Oxfordshire in a house groaning with books, about half
of them crime fiction.