Kingdom of Lies

Lee Wood, Author . St. Martin's Minotaur $24.95 (358p) ISBN 978-0-312-34030-8

Part police procedural and part historical with a dash of romance, SF writer Wood's debut mystery, the first of a series, should have wide appeal. Keen Dunliffe is a rustic Leeds detective whose stubborn ways have already served to get him demoted from homicide duties. The accidental drowning death of Christine Swinton, a promiscuous academic attending a local university conference, leads Dunliffe to meet Gillian "Jillie" Waltham, an American scholar and friend of the victim. Dunliffe and Waltham each have their own reasons for thinking Swinton was murdered. Waltham pursues the literary clues her colleague left about her work on George III, while Dunliffe, surprisingly, finds himself seconded to London to keep an eye on Waltham. Wood (Looking for the Mahdi ) keeps the reader guessing as the mix of sexual shenanigans, forgeries, family secrets and police corruption swirls and eddies. May the likable Dunliffe and the plucky Waltham, wary of their mutual attraction, soon return for more crime-solving adventure. (Dec.)

Reviewed on: 10/10/2005
Release date: 11/01/2005
Genre: Fiction
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