This is my third book in Peter Robinson’s Inspector Banks series. The locale is once again in Eastvale, North Yorkshire. This one focuses on the murder of a fellow constable during a demonstration which turned violent. The material was a bit dated but then this was written over 15 years ago. Still, it had me engrossed and I read it in record time. It starts with an anti-nuclear demonstration on the town square and gets out of hand as the police attack the demonstrators. One of the constables, PC Gill, is killed with a knife during the fracas and subsequent arrests of the demonstrators.
For political reasons, a special investigator is sent up from London, Dick Burgess also known as Dirty Dick. He is a reprehensible character and the sort of cop that gives so many a bad name. He uses illegal methods, has the morals of an alley cat and honestly doesn’t care if they have arrested the right man in connection with the killing – as long as they have an arrest to appease the public. I disliked his persona immensely as did the main characters in the book.
Most of the suspicion centers on a communal farm named Maggie’s Farm, housing artists and political activists who have no love of the police. There are several characters you feel empathetic towards and in Robinson’s usual style, you don’t know who the culprit is until the end. Lots of character development and there was a bit of food mentioned in this one too.
Trying to remember back to our trip to England in 1999 where we were schooled on the proper way to layer the strawberries and cream…I failed. It was still good, mind you, but yes……the cream is spread on the scone first, followed by the strawberry jam on top. I ate two, just to be sure it was properly prepared. We had good Yorkshire tea too.
Next up will be reviews on book three of the Inspector Banks series, a Cuban Cookbook review and a Nora Ephron book.