cover image Revenge in a Cold River: A William Monk Novel

Revenge in a Cold River: A William Monk Novel

Anne Perry. Ballantine, $28 (320p) ISBN 978-1-101-88635-9

In bestseller Perry’s workmanlike 22nd William Monk novel (after 2015’s Corridors of the Night), the Victorian-era Thames River Police commander, who suffers from amnesia caused by a carriage accident years earlier, is baffled why a customs officer, McNab, bears him such enmity. The question is much more than academic, since Monk suspects McNab tipped off river pirates to a police operation and thereby caused the death of Monk’s second-in-command. That history leads Monk to question McNab’s motives in handing over a drowning case to him. The victim, Blount, was a master forger who escaped from custody while being interrogated by McNab’s men. Blount was shot in the back, but the autopsy reveals that the wound was received post-mortem. Meanwhile, after yet another prisoner escapes from the custom officers, Monk fears for his life. The social commentary that informs the best of Perry’s work is largely missing, an absence that is palpable given the unremarkable plot line. [em]Agent: Donald Maass, Donald Maass Literary. (Sept.) [/em]