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Body Line (Bill Slider Mystery) Paperback – May 26, 2014
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From Publishers Weekly
When someone kills Dr. David Rogers with a single shot to the back of the head in his posh London home, Det. Insp. Bill Slider and his team investigate in Harrod-Eagles's solid 13th Bill Slider mystery (after 2010's Fell Purpose). The divorced, womanizing doctor, whose promising career was derailed by a scandal some 10 years earlier, left few clues to his employment and confusing ones about his rich lifestyle. Superintendent Porson offers support and endless malapropisms (e.g., "Talk about a needle in a woodpile!") in a case that Porson opines will come down to "sex or money." Slider and his key players, including Det. Constable Norma Swilley, whose macho image has been undercut since her return from maternity leave, are usually competent, sometimes inspired, sometimes lucky. This fine ensemble procedural produces a surprising picture once all the pieces of the puzzle fall into place. (Apr.)
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Digital edition.
*Starred Review* Existing Harrod-Eagles fans will delight in her new Bill Slider novel, while readers unfamiliar with one of the stalwarts of the modern British police procedural are in for a real treat. Slider�s latest case focuses on the murder of Dr. David Rogers, who is killed at home with an execution-style shot to the head. The more Slider and his team investigate, the more puzzling the case gets. Rogers appears to have no next of kin except his ex-wife, who claims she hasn�t spoken to him in years. He lived a luxurious lifestyle on a modest income from a company that doesn�t exist. He was a womanizer whose numerous girlfriends claim he was a respected doctor, but no hospital has him on their books. Leads are thin on the ground, and motive, means, and opportunity are impossible to substantiate. But eventually the case breaks wide open, and Slider and his team win kudos for solving a crime with international implications. The multitalented Harrod-Eagles has the modern police procedural down pat and perfectly captures the quirks and foibles of the British copper. With its original plot twists, charismatic cast, and the intriguingly multifaceted Slider, this one is a top pick for all collections. --Emily Melton --This text refers to the Digital edition.
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Top customer reviews
Inspector Bill Slider and his team are investigating the murder of David Rogers, shot in his home at point blank range by someone with a silencer. Everything about him indicates he has considerable money, except his bank statement. Yet, the crime doesn't appear to be one of passion or of robbery. With very little evidence, few clues, and no obvious motive, the police are having a difficult time finding the killer. Does the answer lie with one of the many women in Roger's life, with his past or with his shadowy job? The deeper they go into the investigation, the bigger and more complex the case becomes
Reading Cynthia Harrod-Eagles is pure joy. Her love of language is evident on every page as exemplified by her dialogue, wry humor and evocative descriptions..."a well-dressed elderly couple, so tiny and immaculate they could have earned spare cash standing around on wedding cakes." There are hunger-inspiring descriptions of food, from the grab-and-go to a particularly delicious dinner.
Each of the characters is fully-fleshed out and the relationships realistic. It is so refreshing that the protagonists have normal, stable lives and aren't angst-driven or alcoholic, yet there is nothing cloying about the way in which they are presented.
American readers may not be familiar with some of the terms or expressions, yet these are British police who use British vernacular. The meaning of those expressions that may not be known to the American audience can easily be gleaned for their context and add to the veracity of the story.
The plot is developed bit-by-bit from a single murder to something unexpected. This is a serious crime which becomes more serious as the story progresses. At the same time, it is presented in the manner of a traditional mystery in that overt violence is left off-stage. The case is investigated by a team using procedure and following the clues; no tricks but a few very effective red herrings, no sudden revelations. At the same time, it was interesting to learn that, in Britain, one can rent a gun from a dealer for a day. It's that information and attention to detail which greatly enhance the story.
Most of all, I come back to the use of language. There are subtle puns, visual similes and metaphors, and the most wonderful malaprops which are attributable to one of the characters. The cleverest part is that the other characters are so accustomed to them, they are commented on only once and you feel that is more for the sake of the reader.
"Body Line" is an excellent, traditional police procedural with wonderful characters and a very well-constructed plot that is pure pleasure to read.
BODY LINE (Pol Proc-Insp. Bill Slider-England-Cont) - Ex
Harrod-Eagles, Cynthia - 13th in series
Severn House, ©2010, US Hardcover - ISBN: 9780727869579
I feel I may have missed the first in this series and am not sure what it was. Can someone let me know the title. I've been reading Harrod-Eagles Slider books for years and years and cannot recall the first or even the second title. The ones where he meets Joanna.
I think I've likely read them all and hate not having a new one to read. I thoroughly agree with Jerry Bell's review. I'm near to finishing the one I'm reading now and want another right away!