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by Judith Cutler
St. Martin's Minotaur, July 2003
280 pages
ISBN: 0312311923

Buy in the UK | Buy in Canada

Detective Sergeant Kate Power's married lover, also a police officer, was killed by an out-of-control police car. The group she had worked with in London is moving on, and she asks for and receives a transfer to Birmingham, where her only relative, a eccentric, wealthy elderly aunt lives. Auntie, suffering from arthritis, happily enters a high class nursing home and leaves her house to Kate.

Kate has to deal with sexist pigs in the Birmingham detective division to which she is assigned. They resent her London accent, her rank, and her abilities. All except DCI Graham Harvey, who offers her tea and sympathy, and DC Colin Roper, who shows her where to shop in Birmingham.

As the renovations to the old house proceed, Kate and the squad work on the cases of young boys who have been violated. The molestation escalates to murder, and there is nothing the team wants more than to get the perpetrator.

Meanwhile, Kate, having been volunteered by great-aunt Cassie to be temporary organist at the church, has been drafted to coach the soccer team. She also finds that the minister and especially his wife, are very helpful in getting her settled.

This is the first book in the series. It was written in 1998, but has just been released in the US. There are probably books that work better as police procedurals, but Kate, Roper, and Aunt Cassie are characters I'd like to revisit.

Reviewed by Barbara Franchi, June 2003

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Contact: Yvonne Klein (ymk@reviewingtheevidence.com)

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