Cracker to Say I Love You

Molly Brown, Author
Molly Brown, Author St. Martin's Press $21.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-312-13951-3
Reviewed on: 04/03/2000
Release date: 04/01/2000
Set in Manchester, England, this is the first in a series of projected novels based on A&E's Cracker mystery series that was created by Jimmy McGovern and won the 1994 Edgar for Best Television Mystery Feature. Despite its flaws-a slow beginning and abrupt, disconcerting shifts in scene-the raw energy generated by its unique characters sustains considerable suspense. A prostitute deeply in debt to a loan shark befriends a shy young man who becomes an accomplice to her murderous schemes. The two descend into a mad and bloody path, beginning with the grisly dispatch of the loan shark and leading to the fatal bludgeoning a policeman. The copper's youthful, acrimonious squad pursues the duo, aided by Dr. Edward Fitzgerald, freelance psychologist to the police. Shrewd and witty, Fitz is also burdened: he is alcoholic, a compulsive gambler, estranged from his vindictive wife and drawn to a policewoman. Psychotics, psychologists and police all play dangerous games, spinning off enough tension to propel the tale to its grim, satisfying conclusion. (Jan.)
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