cover image The Girl in the Ice

The Girl in the Ice

Robert Bryndza. Grand Central, $12.99 trade paper (416p) ISBN 978-1-538-71342-6

Bryndza (the Coco Pinchard romantic comedy series) leaves no procedural serial killer cliché unused in this pallid series debut featuring London Det. Chief Insp. Erika Foster. After her husband, a fellow police officer, was killed during a botched operation that Erika planned, she took an involuntary break from her job. On her return to active duty, she heads the investigation into the murder of 23-year-old Andrea Douglas-Brown, the daughter of a powerful former cabinet minister, who was found frozen in a disused boating lake one cold winter day. A media frenzy ensues. Erika, a stereotypical lone wolf determined to get the job done despite opposition from within her own ranks, makes one misstep after another, starting with upsetting the Douglas-Browns with her brusqueness at their initial encounter. Her predictable efforts to persevere, even in the face of professional jeopardy, alternate with the de rigueur scenes from the perspective of Andrea’s killer, who keeps a close eye on Erika’s progress. The climax does nothing to reinforce Erika as a capable lead. Few will look forward to her further exploits. [em](Apr.) [/em]