cover image Weycombe


G.M. Malliet. Midnight Ink, $24.99 (384p) ISBN 978-0-7387-5426-0

Jillian White, the narrator of this disappointing standalone from Agatha-winner Malliet (Devil’s Breath and five other Max Tudor mysteries), is the bored American wife of a titled Englishman. She and her husband live in the exclusive gated Weycombe community, where one day Jill, the quintessential outsider, discovers the strangled body of her neighbor Anna, an attractive real estate agent. According to local gossip, Anna was romantically involved with several of the local husbands. Jill decides to supplement the official police investigation with a little probing of her own. To this end, she talks privately with many of her neighbors, but there’s not much action. It soon becomes obvious that the self-obsessed Jill is more interested in how her neighbors perceive her than in their memories or theories about Anna. The pacing suffers as a result. Malliet is usually a gifted storyteller; hopefully she’ll return to form next time. [em]Agent: Vicky Bijur, Vicky Bijur Literary. (Oct.) [/em]