The Good Wife

Jane A. Adams. Severn, $28.99 (224p) ISBN 978-0-7278-8962-1
Set in 1929, Adams’s solid fifth mystery featuring Det. Chief Insp. Henry Johnstone of the Metropolitan Police (after 2019’s The Clockmaker) takes Johnstone and his sergeant, Mickey Hitchens, to Southwell, Nottinghamshire, to investigate the murder of Martha Mason, who left her physician husband and the friends she was mixing with at the local racecourse to go in search of an acquaintance she had supposedly spotted. Her body was later discovered in a horse box away from the track, her skull smashed by a single blow. Who would kill “a woman that everyone accepted was a good wife and model citizen”? The two detectives soon figure out that Martha had an ambiguous and possibly murky past; they also uncover various criminal activities among suspects who range from members of street gangs to lords of the realm. Mickey, who “usually mitigated what was often referred to as Chief Inspector Johnstone’s sharpness and lack of tact,” does the heavy lifting, while Henry quietly ponders the clues. Appealing characters compensate for a convoluted plot. Fans of historical police procedurals will be satisfied. (May)
Reviewed on : 02/13/2020
Release date: 05/01/2020
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
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