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Wednesday, 2 March 2022

‘With A Narrow Blade’ by Faith Martin

Published by Robert Hale,
31st August 2007.
ISBN 978-0-709084433 (HB)

When Florrie Jenkins is found stabbed in her chair, there seems on the face of it no motive for her killing. 

Initial enquires by senior investigating officer DI Hilary Green turns up no reason for the killing of an old lady of seventy-seven living in a rented property with no assets of any kind.  Furthermore she was ill and it seems relatively common knowledge that although she would make her birthday in December, it was thought unlikely she would see Christmas.

However, Hilary sets her team to dig around to see what they can come up with. Janine her Sergeant is about to marry Chief Inspector Mal Mellers, but all is not rosy in Janines world as she has become the victim of a rather vicious stalker.  Also part of the team is new boy Detective Constable Keith Barrington who has left his former station under a cloud, i.e. he punched his Sergeant. Also on the team is the unpleasant Sergeant Frank Ross.

The most likely suspect for the killing is Florries grandson Dillon who is a junkie and who would certainly kill his grandmother for the price of a fix.  He is known to turn up on pension day and fleece his old Gran. Apart from that there are a couple of neighbours who are friendly, but the pickings for a motive and killer are very thin on the ground.

On the personal front Hilary is currently seeing Mike of Vice, but is being eyed up by her boss, the elegant Paul Danvers.

This is an excellent mystery which kept me guessing to the very end.  Very good plot, yet so simple when it is revealed.
Reviewer: Lizzie Hayes

Faith Martin is a pen name of English author Jacquie Walton who was born in Oxford. She is best known for writing a series of books set around Oxfordshire, with the starring character being DI Hillary Greene. She also has a series set in Oxford in 1960 featuring PC Trudy Loveday, who is assigned to help coroner Clement Ryder. Writing as Joyce Cato she has published 7 books featuring Jenny Starling, a travelling cook and amateur detective. And four books featuring Monica Noble, a vicar's wife with a taste for solving crimes.

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