Entertaining byplay between the leads enlivens Ison’s 12th historical showcasing Det. Insp. Ernest Hardcastle and Det. Sgt. Charles Marriott of the Whitehall Division of the Metropolitan Police (after 2013’s Hardcastle’s Traitors). One day in June 1918, a constable happens on the corpse of Georgina Cheney, who apparently fell or jumped from a window of her house in Westminster. Dr. Bernard Spilsbury, an expert in forensic pathology, determines that the woman was strangled shortly after a sexual encounter. The detectives learn that Mrs. Cheney had a reputation for cheating on her husband, a navy commander stationed far enough away to rule him out as a suspect. As they look into the identities—and alibis—of the victim’s lovers, the pair find evidence that she may have been blackmailing someone. Meanwhile, the head of the CID asks them to probe two other murders that he believes are related to the Cheney case. The detecting is strictly by the numbers, but the crisp writing and witty dialogue are a plus. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 09/08/2014 Release date: 11/01/2014 Genre: Fiction
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