cover image Showstopper: A Peter Diamond Investigation

Showstopper: A Peter Diamond Investigation

Peter Lovesey. Soho Crime, $27.95 (336p) ISBN 978-1-64129-470-6

In MWA Grandmaster Lovesey’s superior 21st Peter Diamond investigation (after 2021’s Diamond and the Eye), Bath Superintendent Diamond’s officious and image-conscious boss, Asst. Chief Constable Georgina Dallymore, tells him it’s time for him to think about retiring. Bucking her directive, Diamond has his team look into a series of tragedies that have befallen Swift, a hit TV series featuring a glamorous female villain as its eponymous main character. The press revives what it calls the show’s history of jinxes following the death from an apparent heart attack of elderly actress Daisy Summerfield, who portrayed Swift’s mother, after surprising a burglar in her flat. In the two years before Summerfield’s death, the show’s creator died from alcohol poisoning and a cast member suffered permanent brain damage from a fall. Diamond artfully manipulates Dallymore into greenlighting an investigation into whether these events were unrelated instances of bad luck or something more sinister. The fair-play cluing and surprising twists bolster the plausible police procedural plot. More than 30 years into this series, Lovesey shows no signs of losing steam or ingenuity. Agent: Jane Gelfman, ICM/Gelfman Schneider Literary. (Dec.)