cover image GONE TOMORROW: A Bill Slider Mystery

GONE TOMORROW: A Bill Slider Mystery

Cynthia Harrod-Eagles, . . St. Martin's/ Dunne, $24.95 (368pp) ISBN 978-0-312-30046-3

When a body turns up in a gated Shepherd's Bush playground in the ninth compelling Bill Slider police procedural from Harrod-Eagles (Blood Sinister, etc.), DI Slider and his workaholic staff quickly realize that the victim was an unlikely candidate for murder. The baffling case of unlucky Lenny, a small-time dealer in stolen goods and drugs, blows open when, through a fortuitous but believable coincidence, Slider's sidekick and best friend, Det. Supt. Jim Atherton, discovers a connection between the victim and a mysterious crime syndicate. The meat of the story is how the methodical, intuitive Slider and his people identify the ringleader and unravel the mechanics of his organization, which ensures loyalty by viciously threatening its members. Woven into the story are Slider's personal problems—the tense relationship with his ex-wife, the imposition of his career on the limited time with his two children, the frustrating long-distance love-affair with Joanna, a violinist now playing with a Dutch orchestra—and those of commitment-shy Atherton. The author writes complex puzzles that are lightened with pungent wit, setting the scenes and bringing her characters to life with vivid descriptions (a twitchy, muscular man in a tight black shirt "looked like an unusually well-dressed sack of ferrets"). Although Slider and Atherton often overanalyze, their attention to detail pays off. This satisfying novel ends with surprising personal changes for both of them. (Dec. 2)