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The Case of the Hidden Flame (Inspector David Graham Mysteries Book 2) Kindle Edition
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"Wow! I just finished this book and wow!"
"A crackerjack read."
"I really enjoyed the surprise twists at the end."
"I'm looking forward to posting a glowing review."
"Just finished it early this morning! What a great story!"
"Sweet, emotionally honest, with a lot of backbone in the characters and the writing."
"Love how you are developing the characters and deepening the storyline."
"Inspector Graham has come of age."
From the Author
- ASIN : B019AO3EQ8
- Publication date : December 11, 2015
- Language : English
- File size : 1582 KB
- Simultaneous device usage : Unlimited
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 160 pages
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #104,781 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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As noted above, I got this book without cost. On that basis, I didn't have high expectations; however it was much better than I expected. You can see from the title that this is a British mystery. I don't really consider it a cozy since it doesn't involve pets, cooking or crafts, or any of the other interests that I feel are in the "cozy" category. In fact, it is best described as a police procedural.
The book starts with Detective Inspector David Graham's arrival as the head of the police station on the island of Jersey. Awaiting him are a Detective Sergeant and two fairly inept constables. As might be expected, a newly discovered body soon joins the cast of characters. As DI Graham says, "We’re officially in a murder inquiry. And,” he added with a quirky smile, “I’m not even jolly well unpacked yet. Who ever said that Jersey was some quiet little island?"
The book then covers the usual search for means, motives and opportunities, concluding with the standard mystery conclusion wherein the DI gathers all the suspects and unveils which of them is the culprit. (We all understand, don't we, that this type of scene never occurs in real life?)
The weak point of the book is that the characters are all pretty flat. I recall nothing about the Sergeant is her gender and I had trouble recalling which name went with which Constable, A rewrite with some character development would raise my rating a full point.
DI David Graham is newly arrived on the Island of Jersey in the little town of Gorey. He meets his new crew: Sergeant Janice Harding who seems a little too friendly, Constable Jim Roach who believes his this is his big chance to make it to the Met in London, and Barry “Bazza” Barnwell who is a somewhat lazy and inept sod.
He barely checks into his hotel when a body is discovered on the beach. The dead woman is Dr. Sylvia Norquist. She was soon to be engaged to a retired Colonel Graves who dabbles in the Florida real Estate market. Also on the island are the Pilkingtons, a married couple who bitterly argue when it is learned that the husband was seeing Dr. Norquist. His cancer that she cured has returned and he hasn’t told his wife and Carlos Alves. Mr. Alves’ son died of a brain stem tumor that Dr. Norquist was treating. Some said that she was incompetent in her handling of the case, but Mr. Alves was out at sea during the time of the murder. Or was he?
As the police go about investigating the case, they interview the hotel staff and Dr. Norquist’s acquaintances. They seem to be getting nowhere, and with Barnwell and Roach constantly bickering, it doesn’t help.
During a walk along the beach, the answer finally comes to Graham and he and his officers gather all the suspects together. Since the group of suspects was so small, the identity of the murderer came as no surprise, just that the motive was a little twisted. Still, it was a good and adventurous read.
This book reminds me strongly of a British television show called “Death in Paradise” about murder and mayhem on a small Caribbean island. It is a rather tongue-in-cheek police/detective show. Even the gathering of all the suspects together at the end to reveal the killer is the same as the TV show.
I wouldn’t call this book a “cozy” mystery; it is closer to a police procedural, but with a humorous slant. The bickering between the constables provides smiles now and then. The novella is both well written and plotted. We are given hints of the main characters’ backgrounds, but it doesn’t intrude on the story at all. There is quite a bit packed into this short read. It was surprisingly good. This is my first Alison Golden novel, but it definitely won’t be my last. I am looking forward to the next in the series.
As always, Alison has given us rich characters, i.e. lots of suspects, a well written, twisting plot, and a surprising finish. All mystery resents for those of us who love a good "who done it." I highly recommend all her cozy mysteries!
Top reviews from other countries
There are several other 'long-termers' at the Inn, and they and the staff are all quizzed as to their whereabouts, once the coroner's ascertained the time of death.
Their relationships to the victim, plus other secrets they'd rather keep to themselves but relating to the unusual cause of death are cleverly revealed.
Once more Alison Golden has shown she's a worthy contender for the title 'Cozy' Queen of Fiction; with her entertaining portraits of all the characters, which makes this a quick and enjoyable read.