Books by Hugh Miller

SKIN DEEP by Hugh Miller
Released: Sept. 9, 1992

Somebody is terrorizing and killing Asian immigrants and defiling the corpses, and Asian community leader Mani Chandra is threatening Detective Inspector Mike Fletcher (An Echo of Justice) with vigilantes if he doesn't clear up the case. The clues lead to a barman whose reading includes A Fascist Manifesto for the Nineties and a tough- cookie prostitute who's managed to charm Constable Jim Chinnery, but to nobody who seems capable of murder; so Mike marks time, bickering with psychologist Kate Barbour over whether he's ready to move in with her, waiting to recall the detail that will close the case. Unsurprising and understated to the vanishing point. Mike is right when he admits he hasn't shone as a detective this time. Read full book review >
Released: Sept. 25, 1991

Rough justice among the British constabulary as compassionate Inspector Mike Fletcher sweats to save fugitive cop-killer Steve McMillan (what could have made this scared kid kick Sgt. Lowther to death under the eyes of 20 witnesses?) from the clutches of loutish Sgt. Percy Cullen—who's willing to maim and kill in order to bring in Steve. Meanwhile, Mike's being hunted himself by Guy McKaskill, determined to avenge his arrest of McKaskill's jailed son. Except for one neat twist toward the end, the plots work out just as you'd expect. Miller (Home Ground, Snow on The Ground, etc.) has a nice eye for the gray area between justice and revenge, though his police officers divide too improbably into savage brutes and tenderhearted gents. Read full book review >
HOME GROUND by Hugh Miller
Released: Jan. 10, 1990

Miller's third installment of the Megan Roberts story (following The District Nurse and Snow on the Wind) seems intent on proving that the ailments of people in rural Wales can be just as interesting as those of animals in Herriot's Yorkshire. So here we're treated to a motley assortment of human sufferers, all tended to by Nurse Megan, who in her 40s is just as handsome and capable as ever. Among her patients are an aging schoolmaster wasting away from a mysterious form of metal poisoning, and a depressed minister's wife named Ruth, who gets a little Freudian-style therapy from astute Megan. Miller's favorite medical lady has returned to her hometown of Drynfor to care for her mentor, Gwendolyn Pughe-Morgan, who's been laid low by a weak heart. She's convinced to stay on as district nurse by the local doctor, Dougall McKendrick, who writes poetry and medical texts while quaffing too many spirits. He's a fascinating but boorish sort, which is why Megan takes up with a local shopkeeper instead. Still, it's McKendrick's face that haunts her dreams—an apparition Megan tries to banish with heavy doses of hard work. She sorts out Ruth by persuading her to leave her brutal husband and then discovers that the schoolmaster's wife has been quietly poisoning him. And when McKendrick finally admits that he's fallen in love with Megan, she gets her own house in order, too, by becoming the doctor's better half. More of the same cozy, mildly melodramatic stew, then, seasoned with anal fistulas, obscure diseases, and farming accidents. Read full book review >