cover image Shadow Play: A Bill Slider Mystery

Shadow Play: A Bill Slider Mystery

Cynthia Harrod-Eagles. Severn, $28.99 (224p) ISBN 978-0-7278-8751-1

At the start of Harrod-Eagles’s highly entertaining 20th mystery featuring Det. Chief Insp. Bill Slider (after 2017’s Old Bones), Slider arrives at a crime scene—the muddy yard of an auto repair shop near a London railway line—where lies the body of a well-dressed, well-groomed middle-aged man, killed by a blow to the head. The shop’s surly owner says he’s never seen the man before. The only clue to the victim’s identity is a lottery ticket tucked in his jacket pocket. Soon Slider is drawn into an investigation that touches the lives of a masseuse with a heart of gold, rapacious property developers, small-time politicians, hotshot lawyers, and handsome rent boys, among other colorful and distinctive characters. Slider and the likable members of his police team enjoy an easy camaraderie, and their exchanges are sprinkled with dry wit, as are those between Slider and his musician wife, Joanna, who acts as his sounding board. Harrod-Eagles shows once again why this series ranks high among contemporary British police procedurals. (Feb.)