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Thursday 26 October 2023

‘A Sunset Touch’ by Marjorie Eccles

Published by Constable,
June 2000.
ISBN: 978-0-80460-5 (HB)

The shabby house at the end od terrace of equally run-down houses, was beyond saving by the time the fire brigade arrived. With flames shooting sky high, the screams from a neighbour that there were two young Polish children in the house struck the knot of on-lookers with horror, as they watched the roof cave in.

For Detective Superintendent Gil Mayo it looks like a long night waiting for the fire brigade to conduct their gruesome search before he can establish if he has a case on his hands. From the neighbours the police learn that the house is being rented by a Polish man and his two children. They discover the body of a man, signs of arson and forensic evidence of foul play. Gil Mayo sets his young ambitious Inspector Abigail Moon to investigate. But where are the young children?

Recently returned to the area, Inspector Martin Kite is investigating the brutal attack on the elderly wife of Vicar Edgar Haldane. Cecily is in a coma, there are no signs of a burglary, but clear signs that Cecily had been entertaining at the time of her attack.

This is a complex story, which has its roots in the second world war. As the story progresses, seemingly unrelated incidents become linked, and the tenuous strands are pulled together providing a rich and absorbing story.

Running alongside the complicated relationships of Edgar Haldane and his children is the relationship between Gil Mayo and Alex Jones his partner.

This is the twelfth in this series, and it is an intriguing mystery with a fascinating background. A compelling and enjoyable read and one which I recommend.
Reviewer: Lizzie Sirett

Marjorie Eccles was born in Yorkshire and spent much of her childhood there and on the Northumbrian coast. The author of thirty-three books and short stories, she is the recipient of the Agatha Christie Short Story Styles Award. Her earlier books featuring police detective Gil Mayo were adapted for the BBC. Her most recent series is set after the Great War and features DI Herbert Reardon. There are five books in the series. She has also written a number of standalone books. She lives in Hertfordshire.

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