Roy Grace, Detective Superintendent and head of the high crime unit, faces a dilemma in the latest in this wonderful police procedural series, now numbering thirteen: evidence that one of his own squad may be a murderer. Such a possibility goes against everything Grace believes in. Such a possibility betrays the trust implicit in the job in which each policeman relies on all the others to watch his back.
The possible culprit is faced with an overwhelming accumulation of evidence in a murder case, one involving Lorna Belling, a beautiful woman hairdresser in an abusive marriage, making her husband a suspect in her murder, along with the accused cop. Another suspect is a respected member of the community who was in an extra-marital relationship with her. And a potential fourth suspect was an unknown lover. Lastly, there was always the possibility that she committed suicide.
The subsequent investigation is strewn with a variety of red herrings to keep the reader guessing. Meanwhile, Grace is faced with bringing back home the body of his dead first wife for burial, along with his previously unknown 10-year-old son he is now charged with rearing. Peter James has long demonstrated how a police procedural can not only be intriguing but well written. This latest novel is no exception. And just as important is his ability to show how very human Roy Grace is as a character.