Mystery Books for Sale

[ Home ]
[ About | Reviews | Search | Submit ]


by Lynda La Plante
Bonnier Zaffre USA, August 2021
415 pages
ISBN: 1838774513

Buy in the UK | Buy in Canada

Lynda La Plante's new Jane Tennison investigation finds the detective sergeant residing in Bromley, a place she hopes is a quiet posting where it's easier to study for her inspector's exam. However, discovering a coffin during site work by a construction crew presents both a personal and professional challenge for DS Tennison.

A developer's crew uncovers the coffin on the grounds of the old convent for the Sisters of Mercy, where the firm plans to convert the buildings into private apartments. Police halt construction while they conduct a complete examination of the coffin. Opening the coffin reveals the body of a young nun. The pathologist, Dr. Samantha Pullen, observes signs that the nun may have been buried alive. She also believes someone recently opened the coffin and stole a crucifix from the corpse. Unfortunately, the coffin contains no clues regarding the identity of the deceased or the date of death.

Based on the pathologist's report, DCS Tony Barnes officially assigns DS Tennison to the case and cautions her about interacting with the Catholic Church. In a previous case, DCS Barnes' bad experience with the Catholic Church’s actual deceit involving the death of a young teenager to protect the church's image creates trust issues for DCS Barnes.

On the personal side, DS Tennison's relationship with Nicholas Durham, now actively managing the development firm, becomes an issue as the investigation involves the earlier activities of Thomas Durham.

Even though Helen Mirren in PRIME SUSPECT is hard to beat, reading UNHOLY MURDER is a more fascinating, and yes, satisfying experience. La Plante's storytelling prowess is impressive. Her characters are realistic and well-drawn, flaws included. In addition, the intricately devised mystery easily keeps readers involved, page after page. Let's hope La Plante writes more DS Jane Tennison novels.

§ Ruth Castleberry has worked as an investigator for Pinkerton's, a city desk assistant on the Charlotte News, free-lance writer, marketing/business strategy consultant, competitive intelligence practitioner and digital marketing consultant.

Reviewed by Ruth Castleberry, May 2021

[ Top ]



Contact: Yvonne Klein (ymk@reviewingtheevidence.com)

[ About | Reviews | Search | Submit ]
[ Home ]